Executive Action: What it would mean and how you can get prepared.
We know––you’ve heard it before–but we think changes are coming to the US immigration system. Though comprehensive immigration reform has yet to be passed under President Obama’s administration, the president has announced that he will use his executive power to enact some immigration reform by the end of the year. According to the New York Times, that announcement might come as early as this week, so it’s important to stay informed and get prepared. Sign up for our safe information network for real-time information so that you’re never caught off guard.
What would an Executive Order mean?
If Obama takes Executive Action for immigration reform, it will not be comprehensive but it will likely impact millions of the undocumented persons living in the US. These are some of the options the president might enact:
- Deferred Action:
- Obama has made it clear that one of his top priorities would be to extend Deferred Action to the parents of children with DACA status, as well as to persons with a spouse or child that has a green card or citizenship.
- Deferred Action is not citizenship. But those granted deferred status would likely be safe from ICE deportation for a specific amount of time, and given work permits and temporary Social Security Cards.
- Redistribution of enforcement resources:
- Obama’s administration has deported more individuals annually than the Bush administration. And while we insist that Obama take responsibility for the deportations that have torn apart families under his Presidency, we are hopeful that Obama’s Executive Order might change some of those tactics.
- The President has said that he would direct the Department of Homeland Security to use their resources at the US border, rather than within the United States to lessen the number of daily deportations. ILG endorses the American Immigration Lawyers Association’s recommendations to the Department of Homeland Security and urges President Obama to create a humane enforcement policy that will allow aspiring Americans to be full contributors to our communities without the constant fear of deportation.
How can I prepare?
- Get screened! Getting screened by a lawyer will let you know what options might be available to you. If immigration changes do come, demand for attorneys will skyrocket, and it may be harder to find a good attorney.
- Gather your documents. Collect documents related to your immigration status in the U.S. and your presence in this country. Find as many documents as you can––anything that might help your attorney get a picture of your life.
- Start Saving. Most immigration applications cost hundreds or thousands of dollars. Save you pennies now so that you’re ready when reform is announced.
- Open up a bank account. Don’t have a Social Security Number? Don’t worry! You can get a bank account without one.
- Stay informed. Check out our posts about Notario Publico’s, applying for DACA, what to do if you or your family is deported , where to get ESL help in the Portland area, and more. You can be your own best ally!