Notes and Practice Pointers from USCIS, VAWA, U and T visa Stakeholder Events 2016 created in collaboration by ASISTA, AILA VAWA, U and T visa National Committee, Immigration Center for Women and Children (ICWC), Immigration Legal Resource Center (ILRC), Just Neighbors Ministry Inc, and Sanctuary for Families. This advisory contains general information shared by USCIS staff during multiple stakeholder events this year, and we have added practice pointers and clarification where relevant. We realize that with the change of administration, some of these policies or procedures may be changed or delayed, and we will be sure to update the materials as needed.
ICE Family Residential Committee Report. Develop recommendations for best practices at family residential centers that will build on ICE’s existing efforts in the areas of educational services, language services, intake and out-processing procedures, medical staffing, expansion of available resources and specialized care, and access to legal counsel. ASISTA staff Sonia Parras Konrad was appointment as a committee member.
Enhance Your U Visa Practice
Join our U visa session in the Immigration Advocates Network’s fifth annual fundraising e-Conference, “Cutting Edge Issues in Immigration Law.” This interactive training is a U visa case strategy session, to troubleshoot common U visa issues, including how to frame qualifying crimes, complex inadmissibility issues, and more. Register soon to submit your U visa scenarios on the registration form. Then we can discuss some of the issues you face in practice.
· Cecelia Friedman Levin, Sr. Policy Counsel, ASISTA
· Gail Pendleton, Co-founder of ASISTA.
· The moderator is Christie Popp, of the Popp Law Office.
The training is for two hours on Thursday, November 3rd at 2:00 pm Eastern / 1:00 pm Central / 12:00 pm Mountain / 11:00 am Pacific. The cost of the session is $25. To register, visit https://www.immigrationadvocates.org/link.cfm?26145.
About the e-Conference:
This is a week-long series of interactive online trainings with national experts in representing children, administrative advocacy, entry & admission, U visas, and provisional waivers. We explore the issues through the lens of current events and latest developments in the law.
USCIS' response to the May 16, 2016 sign on letter regarding the significant delays in the U visa program, to which 307 agencies were signatories. In this response, Director Rodriguez notes the increase in applicants as one of the causes of the delay (e.g 11,000 applicants in FY2009 compared with 52,000 applicants in FY 2015) as well as VSC's recent prioritization of adjudicating derivative applications in cases where the principal already has U visa status. One of the strategies to address this delay, not surprisingly, is the U visa workshare with the Nebraska Service Center, which began last month.
* Scroll down for Spanish version of the letter.
Comments on the new I-765V Form and Instructions, which will be for work authorization for abused A, E(iii), G and H derivatives pursuant to INA 106. As these protections were initially in VAWA 2005, this process has been a long time coming, but we are one step closer to USCIS finally accepting these applications. The comments were submitted by AILA, Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence (APIGBV), ASISTA Immigration Assistance, CLINIC, National Domestic Workers Alliance and We Belong Together, that were submitted on Tuesday. Special thanks to Grace Huang, Susan Schreiber, Sameera Hafiz and Laura Lynch for their amazing and thoughtful contributions.
We will let everyone know when USCIS starts accepting these applications and these forms have been finalized.
We are letting you know about a special project we started awhile back with CGRS and Tahirih, melding the holistic approach to helping survivors of gender-based violence with bringing in new folks (as well as providing a refersher) to do asylum for those released from family detention. The results of this effort are free; we hope you find them useful!
TRAINING RESOURCE (this resource can also be found in our clearinghouse under Representing Survivors Seeking Asylum)
ASISTA, Center for Gender and Refugee Studies (CGRS), and the Tahirih Justice Center present a pre-recorded webinar series for attorneys, accredited representatives, domestic and sexual violence advocates, mental health service providers and social workers already familiar with VAWA and U visas to help women and children released from family detention centers, including
- An overview of the asylum framework, help participants with issue spotting and identifying red flags, discuss asylum’s intersections with other forms of immigration relief (SIJS, Tvisa, etc.)
- The mechanics of preparing an asylum application for survivors of gender based violence, including key processes and procedures
- A discussion of complex legal issues, including one-year deadline issues, framing "particular social groups," and preparing successful litigation strategies
To access our training materials and webinar recordings, please CLICK HERE
Assisting Immigrant Survivors of Workplace Sexual Violence
A brand new guide for advocates, organizers and leaders to
advance immigrant women’s gender equality rights
in the workplace
National Latin@ Network Casa De Esperanza's BLOG TALK RADIO Show on Sexual Assault at the Workplace