Immigrants Will No Longer Be Deported On Documentation Grounds Only – U.S.

Immigrants Will No Longer Be Deported On Documentation Grounds Only – U.S.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said immigration officers can no longer detain and deport people from the U.S. solely because of their documentation.

On Thursday, Mayorkas outlined new guidelines that directs Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers in a memo to immigration and border agency officials.

According to him, officials are to focus on the arrest and deportation of immigrants who pose a threat to both national and border security, as well as public safety.

He noted that this includes people suspected of terrorism or espionage, those who have committed serious crimes, and migrants who illegally crossed the U.S.-Mexico border after Nov. 1, 2020.

Homeland Security in a press release said the guidelines require a case-by-case assessment of individuals to determine if they fall under these priority categories.

The statement added that ICE officers will no longer be permitted to arrest and deport undocumented immigrants who have long been “contributing members” of the U.S. community, including faith leaders, farmworkers, and frontline health workers.

The new guidelines which will take effect on Nov. 29 also prohibit officers from detaining immigrants whose status is revealed by “unscrupulous employers,” as long as they don’t commit a major crime.

Mayorkas said in the memo, “We are guided by the knowledge that there are individuals in our country who have been here for generations and contributed to our country’s well-being.

“As we strive to provide them with a path to status, we will not work in conflict by spending resources seeking to remove those who do not pose a threat and, in fact, make our Nation stronger.”

This new guideline mark a shift in U.S. immigration policy as it may spare many of the undocumented immigrants who were at risk of deportation under the Trump administration, which had allowed the arrest of anyone illegally residing in the country.

According to the memo, close to 11 million undocumented immigrants live in the U.S.

Meanwhile, President Joe Biden’s efforts to fight for a path to citizenship this year have faced numerous roadblocks in Congress, as a proposal from Democratic lawmakers to include a citizenship pathway in their budget bill was rejected by the Senate parliamentarian last week.

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