Protecting Immigrant Communities Newsletter: 7/1/20

July 1, 2020 | Texas

[This is a bi-weekly publication produced by Senior Policy Associate, Cheasty Anderson. New issues will be posted here on this blog or you can subscribe to have them delivered directly to your inbox.]


Dear partners and friends,

Thank you so much for wanting to stay up to date on what’s happening. Here’s the latest roundup of immigration-related news, and our bi-weekly action opportunity.  Please let me know as things cross your desk that you think might be of value for our next newsletter, and as always, feel free to forward to folks who might want to join our list.

Lead Stories:

Supreme Court rules against Trump’s attempt to end DACA, a win for undocumented ‘Dreamers’ brought to U.S. as children
The decision written by Chief Justice Roberts stated that the Trump administration did not provide sufficient legal justification to end the program.

U.S. Must Release Children From Family Detention Centers, Judge Rules
A federal judge in Los Angeles ordered the release of migrant children held in family detention centers. This order came after reports that some children had tested positive for COVID-19.

Supreme Court Says Rejected Asylum Seekers Have No Right to Object in Court
In a 7-to-2 decision, the Supreme Court sided with the Trump administration, leaving asylum seekers with bare-bones asylum proceedings that expose them to quick deportations.

Action Items:

The Fight is Not Over: Support Dreamers
The Supreme Court’s decision is a tremendous win in the battle to protect immigrant communities. However, the fight still continues. To continue advocating for Dreamers, United We Dream calls for your support. Follow these steps and take action following this historic SCOTUS decision.

  • Text DACADECISION to 877-877 to stay up to date.
  • Donate to this fund to help immigrant youth afford the renewal of their DACA applications.
  • Learn the most important facts about the SCOTUS decision through this factsheet.

Sign this Petition: Hands Off DACA
Sign this petition to tell the Trump administration to keep their hands off of DACA. While the SCOTUS decision protects DACA for now, Trump and his administration have made it clear that they will attack the program again.

Demand that DHS and USCIS Accept First Time DACA Applications
The Supreme Court’s DACA decision made it clear that new DACA applications must be accepted. However, DHS and USCIS have not released guidance to indicate that applications are open. We need to make sure that everyone who qualifies for DACA is able to apply by signing this petition.

COVID-19 Resources for Immigrants:

Apply for P-EBT: Deadline Extended to July 31st
During this pandemic, immigrant families have been excluded from most forms of government assistance. Pandemic-EBT may be one of the only resources they can access, but many have yet to take advantage of this benefit. Visit this website before the July 31st application deadline to address all of your questions about what this benefit is, whether your family is eligible, and how you can access it.

Immigration-related Executive Actions During the COVID-19 Pandemic
This comprehensive report by the National Immigration Forum outlines the Trump administration’s numerous policy changes since the beginning of the pandemic. These policies have impacted nearly every part of the United States immigration system.

DACA Scholarship Application and Toolkit
In light of the SCOTUS decision on DACA, RAICES created a DACA Application toolkit that outlines what prospective applicants need to know about DACA. Access this toolkit here to understand the program, assess your eligibility, and more.

RAICES is also offering scholarships to help DACA recipients pay for their renewal or their first-time application. Apply to receive this financial assistance here. 

Informed Immigrant’s Resources For the Undocumented Community During The Coronavirus Outbreak

These English and Spanish language pages include national and state-based resources including food distribution sites, mutual aid funds, and health care accessible to undocumented and mixed status families. Please read and share to connect immigrant families with resources during this difficult time.

Other Recent News of Interest:

11 Immigrants in a Detention Center for Families Have Tested Positive for COVID-19
The families have not come in contact with other families at the facility, were asymptomatic, and are in isolation. The test results for other immigrants in the facility are still pending.

Four Severely Ill Migrant Toddlers Hospitalized After Lawyers Visit Border Patrol Facility
The children at this facility were feverish, vomiting, and had diarrhea. They were not receiving medical care before the visiting lawyers intervened.

The True Costs of Deportation
Families face emotional, financial, and mental costs when their loved ones are deported. Read the stories of three families that have faced these challenges.

The White House Is Quietly Deporting Children
This opinion piece showcases the Trump Administration’s attempts to deport children from U.S. borders. The piece highlights the CDC’s extension of an order that would prohibit entry of migrants, including children.

Jails Are Worsening the COVID-19 Pandemic by Transferring People to ICE
The transfers from jail to ICE increase the risk of contracting COVID-19 for immigrants and the communities around them. This report explains the dangers associated with these transfers and what you can do to advocate for immigrants’ public health.

Federal judge makes public letters sent to him by ICE detainees
These letters highlight the circumstances of those detained during a global pandemic. These conditions include a lack of sanitizing supplies and a disregard for immigrant’s safety.

Roberts Bolsters Swing-Vote Status With Immigration Rulings
SCOTUS has addressed a high number of immigration cases. While Roberts sits on a court made up of conservative judges, his decisions are often made to support progressive issues.

Appeals court: Trump wrongly diverted $2.5B for border wall
The administration diverted money from military construction projects to build sections of the border wall without going through Congress, an action ruled unlawful by the appeals court.

Tarrant County leaders extend 287(g) ICE immigration plan
This section of immigration law allows law enforcement officials to work with federal immigration enforcement. In Tarrant County, this federal program has been extended indefinitely.

Immigration groups ask sheriff to end ICE partnership
The Nueces County sheriff extended the 287(g) agreement this month. Due to pressure from immigration groups, the sheriff has agreed to a town hall discussion about the agreement.

Advocates Decry New Use of High Bond Fees as a Condition of Parol for Asylum Seekers
Asylum seekers are faced with challenges as the price of the bond has increased – making it difficult for their relatives and friends to pay their way out of detention centers.

A new Trump proclamation will block foreign workers
Trump continues to block legal immigration, including the sought after H-1B visa, under the pretext of the COVID-19 pandemic. He cites prioritizing American employment opportunities as his main concern when stopping the flow of migrant workers.

Tech leaders say Trump’s immigration crackdown will be bad for business
Business and technology leaders are critiquing President Trump’s regulations on immigration. Many are concerned that the decision could prevent highly trained workers from sharing their talents with the United States.

Texas business leaders say: Trump’s ban on immigrant workers is a move in the wrong direction
This decision comes as a disservice to businesses in Texas, which need to grow now more than ever. Business leaders state that immigrant workers provide their own valuable skill set and help the state’s economy.

I Finally Became a U.S. Citizen Amid the Pandemic
After completing the lengthy process of naturalization, María Méndez shares the story of her citizenship ceremony: a quick and socially distant event during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thanks so much for reading and staying informed.