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Special Reports

Our most in-depth publication, Special Reports provide detailed analyses of special topics in U.S. immigration policy.

An Assessment of DNA Testing for African Refugees

By Jill Esbenshade, Ph.D.

In March 2008, the Bureau of Population, Migration and Refugees (PRM)—the Department of State agency that processes refugees abroad—halted its family reunification program, known as Priority 3 (P3), because of concerns that there were high levels of fraud in the program. In September of 2010, PRM published proposed rules that would change its procedures for processing P3 applicants, including mandatory DNA testing to prove claimed family relationships. Understanding the particular role DNA testing may play in refugee admissions—its costs, its benefits, and the necessary safeguards if put into use—provides insight into not only refugee admissions, but other issues that come into play in immigration policy, such as how family relationships are proven.

This paper traces the underrepresentation of refugees from Africa in the U.S., the allegations of fraudulent African family reunification applications, DNA testing, and how the U.S. government intends to deal with the issue in the future.

Published On: Thu, Oct 21, 2010 | Download File

The New American Electorate (October 2010)

At a time when federal, state, and local elections are often decided by small voting margins—with candidates frequently locked in ferocious competition for the ballots of those “voting blocs” that might turn the electoral tide in their favor—one large and growing bloc of voters has been consistently overlooked and politically underestimated: New Americans.  This group of voters and potential voters includes not only immigrants who have become U.S. citizens (Naturalized Americans), but also the U.S.-born children of immigrants who were raised during the current era of large-scale immigration from Latin America and Asia which began in 1965 (the Post-1965 Children of Immigrants). Read more...

Published On: Thu, Oct 14, 2010 | Download File

Giving Facts a Fighting Chance: Answers to the Toughest Immigration Questions

This comprehensive Q&A guide reviews the most current research available, debunks myths, and answers some of the most common immigration-related questions, including those about worksite enforcement, border security, birthright citizenship, access to public benefits, immigrant criminality, immigrant integration and the economic impacts of immigration.

Americans are justifiably frustrated and angry with our outdated and broken immigration system.  The problem is complex, and a comprehensive, national solution is necessary.  Politicians who suggest that the U.S. can deport its way out of the problem by removing 11 million people are unrealistic.  The U.S. needs a fair, practical solution that addresses the underlying causes of unauthorized immigration and creates a new, national legal immigration system for the 21st century.

Published On: Tue, Oct 12, 2010 | Download File

The DREAM Act: A Resource Page

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Published On: Thu, Sep 16, 2010

Enforcing Arizona's SB 1070: A State of Confusion

By Jeffrey Kaye

Arizona and the federal government await a decision from a Phoenix district judge on whether enforcement of SB 1070 will move forward on July 29th, or whether all or some parts of the law will be enjoined. Meanwhile, local law enforcement is struggling to interpret SB 1070 and provide training to officers, which could be further complicated if the judge allows only some parts of the law to go forward.

In this new report released today by the Immigration Policy Center, journalist Jeffrey Kaye reveals that "instead of 'statewide and uniform practices' as directed by the governor, Arizona police agencies have developed a patchwork of guidelines based on varying interpretations of the law."

Kaye's reporting includes interviews with police officials, who cite concerns with implementing the new law, and a review of training materials that suggest the implementation of SB 1070 will differ from one jurisdiction to another, and even within police agencies, and "will be burdensome, costly, and distort priorities."

Published On: Tue, Jul 27, 2010 | Download File

Reforming America's Immigration Laws: A Woman's Struggle

By Kavitha Sreeharsha

While immigrant communities across the nation endure the long wait for immigration reform, there are roughly 19 million immigrant women and girls currently in the U.S. Immigrant women, particularly the undocumented, are often more vulnerable than their male counterparts, lack the same economic opportunities, and experience exploitation while crossing the border, while working and even in their own homes. In short, immigrant women have become the silent victims of a broken immigration system.

In this IPC report, immigration attorney Kavitha Sreeharsha lays out the economic and social disparities, legal barriers to current immigration law and the many dangers hard-working immigrant women are forced to endure.

The report also explores how women are distinctly harmed by heightened enforcement of immigration laws. Abusers, traffickers, and exploitative employers keep immigrant women from seeking local law-enforcement protection by convincing them that police officers are working in partnership with DHS and will deport victims instead of protecting them. Essentially, these enforcement measures increase the likelihood of abuse and assault against immigrant women by cutting them off from help and giving their perpetrators a powerful tool to silence their victims and escape prosecution.

Ultimately, the author concludes, only through a comprehensive immigration reform package—one that includes a path to legalization that values the contributions immigrant woman make as mothers, wives and workers—can the U.S. reconcile these disparities.

Published On: Mon, Jun 28, 2010 | Download File

DHS Progress Report: The Challenge of Reform

By Royce Bernstein Murray, Esq.

The month of March marks the seventh anniversary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and its immigration agencies. It also marks the end of a sweeping internal review ordered by Secretary Janet Napolitano, a review which as not been made public. In order to assess the first year of immigration policy under the Obama Administration, the Immigration Policy Center releases the following Special Report which compare DHS's actions with the recommendations (Transition Blueprint) made to the Obama Transition Team’s immigration-policy group. How does DHS stack up? The following IPC report finds a department caught between the competing priorities of old broken policy and new reforms. While DHS has failed to meet key expectations in some areas, it has engaged thoughtfully and strategically in others, and has made some fundamental changes in how it conducts its immigration business.

Published On: Tue, Mar 02, 2010 | Download File

The Criminal Alien Program: Immigration Enforcement in Travis County, Texas

By Andrea Guttin, Esq.

The Criminal Alien Program (CAP) is a program administered by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that screens inmates in prisons and jails, identifies deportable non-citizens, and places them into deportation proceedings. In this Special Report, The Criminal Alien Program: Immigration Enforcement in Travis County, Texas, author Andrea Guttin, Esq., provides a brief history and background on the CAP program.  Guttin also includes a case study of CAP implementation in Travis County, Texas, which finds that the program has a negative impact on communities because it increases the community’s fear of reporting crime to police, is costly, and may encourage racial profiling. Read more...

Published On: Wed, Feb 17, 2010 | Download File

Many Happy Returns: Remittances and their Impact

By Kristin Johnson, Ph.D.

Millions of immigrants in the U.S. send billions of dollars in remittances to friends and family members in their home countries each year.  While it is easy to assume that this represents a huge loss for the U.S. economy, the relationship between remittances and the U.S. economy is much more complex than meets the eye. It’s true that remittances are an important source of income for immigrant-sending countries, but remittances are also a huge boost to U.S. exports and the U.S. economy. The following IPC Special Report reveals the economic benefits of remittances to both developing nations and the U.S. economy.

 

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Published On: Wed, Feb 10, 2010 | Download File

Raising the Floor for American Workers

According to a new study by UCLA’s Dr. Raúl Hinojosa-Ojeda, Raising the Floor for American Workers: The Economic Benefits of Comprehensive Immigration Reform, legalizing undocumented workers through comprehensive immigration reform would yield $1.5 trillion to the U.S. GDP over a ten year period, generate billions in additional tax revenue and consumer spending and support hundreds of thousands of jobs. The report, which runs several different economic scenarios, finds that enacting a comprehensive immigration reform plan which creates a legalization process for undocumented workers and sets a flexible visa program dependent on U.S. labor demands not only raises the floor for all American workers, but is an economic necessity.

 

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Published On: Thu, Jan 07, 2010 | Download File