On Tuesday, the “Dignity 2023” immigration plan was proposed by congressmen Maria Elvira Salazar (R-Florida) and Veronica Escobar (D-Texas) in Washington DC. The initiative, according to the authors, seeks to move the debate that is now established in both chambers and includes a path to legalization for some undocumented immigrants who have been in the United States for a long time and have no criminal record.
If advanced to the committee level in the House of Representatives, the bill needs 218 votes in the plenary session where Republicans have a majority with 222 seats, while Democrats have 213 seats. In the Senate, for his part, where the Democrats have the smallest party with 51 seats, three independents, the future plan is complex and 60 votes are required for approval.
Until now, the leaders of both parties have not governed the matter, like the White House, which in March 2021 achieved victory through measures in the Lower House, with the approval of two bipartisan immigration reform projects with a journey to citizenship for some 4 million undocumented.
However, both bills failed in the Senate due to a lack of support from both Republicans and Democrats.
“We welcome and appreciate any serious effort to forge a bipartisan immigration solution and short-sighted efforts to replace our broken immigration efforts,” said Vanessa Cardenas, executive director of Voice of America, after the initiative was launched.
These are the keys to the new policy called “Dignity Law 2023”.
Axis of prestige project
It rests on four broad pillars;
- border security;
- Legalization, the road to citizenship;
- It protects American workers;
- Legal immigration (changes to the H-2 visa program); and
- Reduce traffic jams to the immigration service and to the immigration court.
“We are concerned about some of the provisions of the bill, but we understand that it is also a start,” Cardenas said. “Before solving the problems plaguing our immigration system, lawmakers must come to the table of agreement, and Congressman Salazar and Escobar and their colleagues at least establish a dialogue and prepare that table.”
1. Security limit
The project has invested $25 billion to achieve its goals. In addition, it requires 100% of employers to use the E-Verify program.
Note Current law includes the use of software to verify the immigration status of workers.
The plan also includes;
- The construction of “improved physical infrastructure and advanced technology to develop the frontier”;
- Funds to hire new Border Patrol agents and border intelligence units;
- New location and tracking systems for human traffickers and drug cartels;
- Designates Mexican Cartels as Special Transnational Criminal Organizations;
- Complete the entry and exit biometric system at the port borders;
- The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is authorized to use DNA to test family relationships.
2. Asylum policy
The bipartisan immigration committee recommends “expediting” the asylum process and resolving cases within 60 days. But he doesn’t remember that the Joe Biden administration in May last year accelerated and set deadlines of up to 45 days to decide on the case of granting and refusing asylum.
It also does not mention policies implemented as of May 12 after the lifting of Title 42 of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) order, which include new asylum regulations, expedited processing, access to legal advice and deportations. who do not have a legal reason or reason to remain in the United States.
- Put an end to the ‘catch and release plan’ (catch and release);
- Create five Humanitarian Camps (HC) on the southern border to receive people and families who arrive seeking asylum;
- Until the cases are resolved, the asylum seekers will remain;
- Asylum cases will be resolved within 60 days;
- Creates five additional immigration centers in Latin America to stop migrants;
- The new plan establishes a double penalty for those caught at a crossing point other than the port of entry, to ensure that legitimate asylum seekers receive due treatment while criminals are apprehended.
use 1 . The government, through executive authority, can optimize resources and place under the Alternative Detention Program (ATD) immigrants who do not represent and are expected to pose a threat to the state, national or border interests of the United States. their asylum in immigration cases at liberty.
use 2. The bill against the Biden administration’s policy does not include access to legal counsel for detained immigrants seeking asylum.
use 3. At the end of April, the Departments of Homeland Security (DHS) and Justice (DOJ) announced the creation of regional centers in Central and South America to stop caravans, provide information about legal programs to enter the United States and promote legal immigration.
3. Legalization, the road to citizenship
- Creates an immediate and simpler path to protected status for Dreamers and Temporary Protection Program (TPS) holders;
- Creates a seven-year pathway to waiver (a dignity program) for undocumented immigrants who have been in the country for a minimum of 5 years (from the date the law was passed);
- Those who are competent to do the work are permitted;
- Among the requirements, speak English, pay taxes and have no infamy;
- Recipients will pay a penalty of $.5,000 in restitution over the seven-year period;
- People who participate do not have access to federal benefits or benefits tied to economic resources;
- At the end of the seven-year period electors will apply for US naturalization.
Use It is not clear if the fine of 5,000 will be a single payment for seven years of remaining in the program or every year, they must renew the renewal of the fine.
4. Protect American workers
The Dignity 2023 bill creates a new Fund for America’s Workers, with a repayment plan from the redemption program.
The fund, he said, “will provide training, education and training to working Americans who are unemployed.”
He says the purpose of the bill is to “ensure that Americans can apply for the most in-demand careers,” but he doesn’t explain how.
5. Legal immigration
A bipartisan immigration proposal:
- H-2A and H-2B visa processing streams;
- The quota for H-2A, H-2B visas increases the time periods required;
- The H-2 visa program is expanding to other areas; and
- It allows certain workers with H-2 visas to apply for residency after 8 years of residency plus work experience.
6 Reduce bottlenecks
The plan mentions the modernization of the legal immigration system and the bottlenecks in the Office of Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Immigration Court (EOIR) within 10 years, but does not explain how or why, at least in time.
- Reduce the expectation of family-based or work-based visa slots;
- Increase the quota limit established in the 1990 Immigration Act from 7% to 15%.
- Allow STEM PhD graduates from US universities, including medical students, to be eligible for O visas and work in the US;
- Grants of employment allow H-4 visa holders to immediately receive status;
- Create a new visa for temporary family visits;
- Modernize the F Visa program for foreign students; and
- Create a Czar or Coordinator of Immigration Organizations.
Benjamin Johnson, executive director of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), said in response to the introduction of the Dignity Act of 2013 by Representatives Escobar and Salazar, “the introduction of a bipartisan bill that modernizes our immigration system is an encouraging sign in this divided, ultra-divided era.
“This is an important first step, restarting the conversation that must happen if our country’s immigration laws are to meet the needs of the 21st century economy,” he added.
Johnson went on to say that “AILA is pleased that these two leaders say the issue of giving up, a necessary and vital element of any immigration reform effort, has been sidelined because of the focus on the southern border.” And that, while being “doesn’t agree with everyone on this bill, he looks forward to working with those leaders to understand and work out a compromise.”
7. Who are the co-authors of the document?
In addition to Congressman Salazar and Escobar, the Dignity Project 2023 by lawmakers Jenniffer González-Colón (R-Puerto Rico), Hillary Scholten (D-Michigan), Lori Chávez-DeRemer (R-Oregon), Kathy Manning (D -North Carolina ) and Mike Lawler (R-New York).