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  1. #1
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    The Other Illegal Immigrants - Visa Overstays

    The other illegal immigrants

    Posted: Jun 29, 2010 7:04 PM PDT Tuesday, June 29, 2010 10:04 PM EST
    Updated: Jun 30, 2010 6:55 AM PDT Wednesday, June 30, 2010 9:55 AM EST

    Reporter: Claire Doan

    TUCSON (KGUN-TV) - The national debate over SB1070 has largely ignored one sizeable population: millions of people who used visas to enter the United States legally, but stayed long after their documentation expire.

    The latest statistics show these illegal immigrants comprise nearly half of the 11 million illegal immigrants currently in America, but few are actually caught.

    Last year in Arizona, federal agents arrested and deported only 27 visa violators – a tiny figure compared with the 241,673 people that Tucson Border Patrol apprehended last year.

    Immigration attorney Maurice Goldman says he often encounters people who stay in the United States, even after Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) notifies them of their visas expiring.

    "I've seen people here for sometimes a decade, sometimes longer without documentation. They're flying under the radar. They're not doing anything that's drawing attention to them," Goldman said. "That's why you see so many people here over the years. As long as [they're] not getting into criminal trouble, they're not really high priority as far as arrests."

    9OYS asked Richard Crocker, the Deputy Special Agent in Charge at ICE, why there seems to be a lack of priority when it comes to tracking down visa violators. He says the statistics do not reflect a lack of effort on ICE's part; rather, it's a matter of geography.

    "Most of what we deal with here are the entry-without-inspection people who walk across the border, who have not status to begin with. That's the bulk of our work," Crocker said. "Most of your visa overstays, foreign student, violent overstays – most of them are in your major metropolitan areas."

    Agents in ICE's special enforcement unit in Washington, DC look through data and records for possible violators, prioritize the list of possible offenders and send names to local ICE offices. That's when local agents in Arizona track down the visa violators and make arrests.

    "The problem is that we have procedures in place. The federal laws exist. The penalties exist. They basically have not been enforced over the years," Attorney General Terry Goddard said, but emphasize that Arizona has certain mechanisms in place to deter visa violators.

    "Frankly, in Arizona we're very tough on having any kinds of benefits. You can't get driver's licenses. You can't get insurance. You can't get state benefits of many kinds. So that's a start."

    http://www.kgun9.com/Global/story.asp?s=12731193#
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  2. #2
    Senior Member BetsyRoss's Avatar
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    The H-1B temporary guestworker visa is often violated in this way. They just don't go home. Also, the spouse visa, the H4, they aren't supposed to work but they do anyway, which is a visa violation. They come here on visitor visas, student visas, you name it - and don't leave. There is a shady network of bodyshops that will hire them - meaning a job lost to an American.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member swatchick's Avatar
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    That is one of the biggest problems in South Florida. We have lots that were allowed to come here from Central America after hurricane Mitch and are still here. Colombians also had temporary visas and some have overstayed by 15 years or more. The same with Haitians year ago and now after the earthquake many got them and our biggest fear is that when they expire the people will just remain here.
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    Senior Member hattiecat's Avatar
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    I just returned from North Miami where I stayed at a Best Western. Every employee I encountered was from Haiti; they were very nice folks but none could speak English. While I surely empathize with them due to the devastation their country has suffered, at the same time think that out of work Americans, who are also suffering, surely would be willing to work at that hotel.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member swatchick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hattiecat
    I just returned from North Miami where I stayed at a Best Western. Every employee I encountered was from Haiti; they were very nice folks but none could speak English. While I surely empathize with them due to the devastation their country has suffered, at the same time think that out of work Americans, who are also suffering, surely would be willing to work at that hotel.
    North Miami is an extension of Little Haiti. Your comment about American workers willing to work hotel jobs reminds me of my friend. She was a legal immigrant and worked cleaning rooms at Hampton Inn. Her coworkers were mostly Hispanic who spoke little English and same the with the maintenance workers. Many of them were also illegals. She used to comment on how poor of a job they did and never cleaned all the rooms they had to do and she ended up helping them. She got good tips as she did a good job and was pleasant. All the sudden she got less in tips and wondered what was going on. One day she saw a maintenance man go into her rooms before she did and realized he may be taking her tips and after a guest asked her if she got her tip she knew her tips were being stolen. The supervisors were Hispanic and when she complained they did nothing to help her and ended up getting her fired.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member ReggieMay's Avatar
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    It's interesting how the government can track one cow from birth to slaughter house to protect herds against disease, but it can't keep track of visa overstays.
    "A Nation of sheep will beget a government of Wolves" -Edward R. Murrow

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  7. #7
    Senior Member swatchick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ReggieMay
    It's interesting how the government can track one cow from birth to slaughter house to protect herds against disease, but it can't keep track of visa overstays.
    The problem is that in the past the overstayers were looked at as less of a threat as they were screened for criminal histories. Now in has changed due to technology for one. In Florida you can only get a driver's license if you are here legally and if you have a visa then your license runs out on the same day as your visa. It also has temporary written on it in red capital letters. If you are caught driving afterwards and they run you by name it will come up as notify ICE.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member edstate's Avatar
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    Get them too!

    Get the employers!

    Get them ALL !

    ...that's one of the biggest misconceptions about "us". That we ONLY want the Illgals (who are of course all hard working, families, etc, etc, lol) to be the target of enforcement.

    Not so.

    You break the immigration laws? You should go DOWN. Period.
    Just because you're used to something doesn't make it right.

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