Awareness - February 21, 2023 - We Welcome

Awareness - February 21, 2023

Thousands of Ukrainians at imminent risk of losing legal status

In the first few months after Russia invaded Ukraine, tens of thousands of Ukrainians flew to Mexico, hoping to be allowed to enter the U.S. This led the Biden administration to put together two different immigration programs to grant them status and have them resettled quickly. Those who arrived by April 11, 2022 were given Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and then on April 21, the administration announced the Uniting for Ukraine program which allows Ukrainians with a U.S. sponsor to fly to the U.S. and remain legally for two years. However, those who arrived between the dates of those programs were given only a one year reprieve to live in the U.S. The end of this reprieve is quickly approaching with no announcement from the government regarding plans to renew it.

A new policy update will provide protections from aging out for some documented Dreamers 

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has updated a policy to allow children and young adults with dependent visas to lock in their age earlier in the process of applying for a green card. These individuals have parents who hold temporary visas with pending green card applications. Previously age calculations were based on the “final action date” of a visa approval, but under the change, age calculations will be based on the earlier filing date when applicants submitted their green card applications. This will put some of these children and young adults at ages lower than 21 and therefore they will not have aged out and will remain eligible to immigrate with their parents. “This is an important step forward that will protect many individuals who contribute to our country and economy every single day, but we cannot stop here,” Rep. Deborah Ross (D-N.C.) stated. It is imperative that Congress pass bipartisan legislation that offers a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers.

DHS Secretary Mayorkas calls on Congress to help fix the broken immigration system

As some members of the House of Representatives work to build a case for impeachment against DHS Secretary Mayorkas due to their criticisms of the Biden administration’s immigration policies, the secretary calls on Congress to work to fix the broken immigration system. “The level of migration that has gripped our hemisphere is extraordinary,” Mayorkas stated and stressed the need for comprehensive reform, which over 75% of American adults also support.