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  1. #1
    Administrator ALIPAC's Avatar
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    ALIPAC in AJC: Illegal immigrants seeking relief from deportation can apply Wednesday

    Illegal immigrants seeking relief from deportation can apply Wednesday

    By Jeremy Redmon

    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
    Alexandra Alor follows a simple system to elude immigration authorities.
    Enlarge photo

    Vino Wong, vwong@ajc.com Alexandra Alor, 17, right, follows a system to elude immigration authorities in the Atlanta area. At left is her sister Bridget, 15, a U.S. citizen who attends Lakeside High and her brother Daniel Carreno, 28, who works in construction.




    An illegal immigrant from Peru, Alor doesn’t venture out of her home in DeKalb County when she sees police setting up traffic stops nearby or hears about them on Hispanic radio stations. That system has worked for the 17-year-old Lakeside High School student ever since her grandmother illegally brought her to the United States about 10 years ago.


    Now she sees an opportunity to remain here without the nerve-racking fear of deportation. She plans to apply for special consideration this week under a controversial new policy the Obama administration announced in June. The policy applies to illegal immigrants who were brought here as young children, who have not committed serious crimes and who are now in school or have graduated.


    Proponents say the policy is a humane way to boost the U.S. economy by keeping educated immigrants such as Alor here. Critics say the White House is pandering to Hispanics for votes with its election-year announcement, and that the move could take jobs away from American citizens. They also worry the changes could send the wrong signals, inviting more people to enter the country illegally. The government’s new approach comes as Georgia is battling in federal court for permission to enforce several tough measures aimed at cracking down on illegal immigration.


    Wednesday is the first day immigrants such as Alor may start applying to the government for “deferred action,” or a promise that they won’t be deported for two years. Alor can apply again in two years. She also plans to seek permission to work legally here as part of the same process.


    Nearly 1 million immigrants across the U.S. are now eligible for deferred action, according to an estimate by the Immigration Policy Center, an arm of the American Immigration Council, an immigrant rights and policy group in Washington. Of those, 24,360 live in Georgia, the eighth-largest total among states.


    The Obama administration announced the policy in June, saying it would help authorities spend more resources on deporting illegal immigrants who threaten public safety or national security.


    To apply, immigrants must pay $465 and submit to background checks. To become eligible for work permits, they must also demonstrate “economic necessity.” Those who are spared from deportation will not be given legal status under the policy. But they may reapply for deferred action and work authorization. Those who receive deferred action can apply for driver’s licenses in Georgia. And those who get work permits can obtain Social Security cards, said Charles Kuck, Alor’s immigration attorney, who teaches immigration law at the University of Georgia.


    The new policy bears some similarity to a provision in the DREAM Act, legislation that would give special consideration to illegal immigrants who came here as children, graduated from high school and attended college or served in the military. That legislation failed in Congress in 2010.


    During a Rose Garden speech in June, President Barack Obama said the change will help make the nation’s immigration policy “more fair, more efficient and more just.”
    “This is a temporary stopgap measure that lets us focus our resources wisely while giving a degree of relief and hope to talented, driven, patriotic young people,” said Obama, whose administration has continued to push for passage of the DREAM Act.


    Supporters say the new approach is humane because it will stop the government from deporting young illegal immigrants to countries they know little about. Republican congressmen have blasted the changes, accusing the White House of making an end run around Congress.


    “President Obama’s announcement earlier this year that he will no longer deport certain illegal immigrants is an election-year gimmick that amounts to amnesty and will be implemented at the expense of Georgia’s taxpayers,” said U.S. Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-Marietta. “This is yet another example of the president’s administration refusing to secure our borders and enforce existing laws.”


    Alor talked about her journey to the U.S. during an interview at her attorney’s office just south of Roswell. She said her parents illegally entered the U.S. to find work when she was an infant, leaving her in the care of her grandmother. Her grandmother illegally brought Alor across the Mexican border to the U.S. when she was 7 so she could reunite with them in Georgia. Alor has a younger sister who was born in the U.S. The two share a room decorated with Winnie the Pooh dolls. On Monday, Alor, who speaks English with no detectable accent, started her senior year at Lakeside High.


    She said she has felt “trapped” because of the fear of deportation and knows many other young immigrants in similar circumstances. She hopes Congress will pass the DREAM Act so she can become a U.S. citizen.


    “Everyone feels stuck,” said Alor, who wears bracelets printed with the words “Love,” “Courage” and “Peace.” “As a group, we try to motivate each other.”


    Meanwhile, Alor plans to apply for a work permit so she can legally wait on tables at a restaurant and save money for college. She wants to become an ultrasound technician.
    Critics worry the new policy will allow illegal immigrants to take jobs from U.S. citizens in Georgia, particularly at a time of high joblessness.


    “That is a direct kick in the teeth to American workers and legal immigrants that are suffering horribly in this historically bad economy and losing their homes in unprecedented numbers,” said William Gheen, president of Americans for Legal Immigration, a political action committee that advocates for immigration enforcement. “No one that was a friend to American workers would do what it is Obama has done.”


    Kuck, Alor’s attorney, dismissed such criticism, saying many of the people who are immediately eligible for relief from deportation are probably already working in the U.S. Adding other immigrants to the workforce will increase spending in the economy, he said.


    “There is going to be an economic boost that comes from this,” said Kuck, past president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. “They are not taking jobs away from anybody.”


    Change in policy



    On June 15, the Obama administration announced a new policy that gives special consideration to certain illegal immigrants. The policy spares them from deportation and gives them the right to work legally in the U.S. for two years. People may start applying Wednesday. To be eligible, applicants must:



    • Be younger than 31 as of June 15;


    • Have come to the U.S. when they were under 16;


    • Have continuously resided in the U.S. since June 15, 2007;
    • Were present in the U.S. on June 15 and at the time of filing their applications for deferred action;
    • Entered the country without inspection before June 15 or their lawful immigration status expired as of June 15;
    • Be in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, obtained a GED certificate or possess an honorable discharge from the U.S. military;


    • Have not been convicted of a felony, "significant misdemeanor," or three or more other misdemeanors and "do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety."

    Learn more here: www.uscis.gov/childhoodarrivals



    How many are eligible?


    A study by the Washington-based Immigration Policy Center shows nearly 1.4 million immigrants in the U.S. might be eligible for deferred action under this policy, either now or when they are older. Of those, 936,930 are between the ages of 15 and 30 and are immediately eligible. Here's a breakdown of the top 10 states now home to immigrants who fit into that category:


    California 298,030
    Texas 152,550
    Florida 60,190
    New York 55,490
    Illinois 48,590
    Arizona 34,840
    New Jersey 28,460
    Georgia 24,360
    North Carolina 18,150
    Washington 18,130

    http://www.ajc.com/news/illegal-immi...f-1499567.html
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

  2. #2
    Senior Member Kiara's Avatar
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    “There is going to be an economic boost that comes from this,” said Kuck, past president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. “They are not taking jobs away from anybody.”

    We all know that illegals take jobs away from American citizens. Obama has just unleashed hundreds of kids to go get jobs. WE need jobs to feed our families, not these kids who never should have been here to begin with!!

  3. #3
    Senior Member MontereySherry's Avatar
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    Does this mean that they are all elligible for Obamacare?

  4. #4
    Senior Member HAPPY2BME's Avatar
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    Join our FIGHT AGAINST illegal immigration & to secure US borders by joining our E-mail Alerts at http://eepurl.com/cktGTn

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