Tag - border

The Case for Why We Need More Immigration, Not Less

Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg recently said while speaking at a Mexican restaurant that despite the efforts to curtail immigration that the current administration has undertaken, more immigration is needed not less. “We need immigrants to take all the different kinds of jobs that the country needs — improve our culture, our cuisine, our religion, our dialogue and certainly improve our economy.” And while this view has not been echoed by many other politicians, there are some who believe as Mayor Bloomberg does – more immigration to the US is needed, not less. Here are some of the arguments for why more immigration to the US is needed.

  • Immigrants tend to be highly productive: According to the Hoover Institution, people who immigrant to the U.S. from poor countries are two to eight times more productive than they were in their native countries. In fact, many immigrants hold down more than one job which contributes to the economy.
  • Immigration supports a younger work force: Many demographers and economists are warning that the population of aging baby-boomers is beginning to surpass the number of working-age adults in the work force. Thus, many people believe that since immigrants tend to be young, working-age individuals, their infusion of energy can help reverse this trend.
  • Immigrants support social safety net programs: Even immigrants who use illegal social security cards fund many of the social safety net through the taxes they pay. In fact, IRS data shows that in 2015 alone immigrants paid 6 billion in taxes.
  • Immigrants help to increase the Gross domestic product (GDP): The total value of goods produced and services provided in a country during one year increases as immigrants help by producing more goods in their adopted country. This can benefit the GDP of the immigrant’s new country and contribute to the world GDP overall.
  • Immigration can help stabilize falling birthrates: American birthrates are dropping as the population is aging. In fact, according to Census data, from 2015 to 2035, the number of working-age Americans with domestic-born parents is expected to fall by eight million. Immigration could help halt this decline.

The movement to decrease immigration is generally supported by people who are operating with a lack of facts or who are motivated mainly by fear and ignorance. I – attorney Erika Roman – help to fight such fear and ignorance on daily basis. I will support you in your efforts to confront this overcomplicated and often impersonal immigration system that nearly everyone agrees is in need of reform. I am Erika Roman immigration lawyer. I will speak to you about your case for free.

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Courtroom Etiquette: Tips on How to Conduct Yourself Court

We attorneys spend much of our working hours in court. Thus, an environment that seems completely strange and intimidating to most people is very familiar to us. However, non-attorneys should know that certain standards of conduct are expected and even demanded from litigants when they are in court. Here are some of the most basic rules about how you should conduct yourself in court:

  • Dress appropriately: You should always dress conservatively when appearing in court. This means that you will most likely want to wear what would be considered to be business formal in an office setting. Men should wear a suit, a nice shirt, dress shoes and slacks. Women should wear a conservative dress, pants suit or business suit and avoid clothes that are revealing or provocative.
  • Arrive early: Judges consider tardiness as a sign of disrespect towards the court. Therefore, you should make every effort to not only attend your hearing on time, but you should try to be early if you can. First, your attorney may wish to go over a few things with you before your hearing begins. Second, you will need to allow time for parking if you have a car or to get public transportation.
  • Address the judge properly: When addressing the judge always address him/her as “your honor”. “Sir” or “ma’am” is usually acceptable as well.
  • Treat everyone you encounter with respect: Remember to be polite and to treat everyone at your hearing with respect. You do not want to prejudice the judge or other people present at your hearing by behaving in an inappropriate manner or by using inappropriate language.
  • Wait quietly during the hearing until you are directed to speak: This helps keep the courtroom procedures flowing in an orderly and efficient manner. Additionally, you do not want to let your attention wander or engage in idle conservations with others while your case is being heard.
  • Stand up when it is your turn to speak: Always stand and speak loudly and clearly when addressing the court. Also, you do want to use slang terms or profanity while making a statement or when answering questions.

This is just a small sample of how you should conduct yourself during your immigration hearing and during all appearances in court. The entire process may seem foreign to you but this will not work as an excuse when you are in court. As an immigration attorney in Van Nuys, I will help you prepare for court by going over these rules and others. As an immigration attorney in Oxnard, I can never guarantee the outcome of your case but I can guarantee that I will use all of my education and experience to advocate for you.

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5 Facts about Migrant Agricultural Workers

Most economic experts say that without migrant agricultural workers the US economy would take a major hit. In fact, in acknowledgment of this reality bipartisan members of Congress have worked together to forge a bill called The Agricultural Job Opportunities, Benefits, and Security (AgJOBS) Act. This bill has been designed to be a blueprint for comprehensive immigration reform as it relates to agricultural workers. It deals with reforming the H-2A temporary foreign agricultural worker program. Here are a few facts about the migrant agricultural workers and the critical role they play in the nation’s economy.

Fact: Agricultural workers support the $985 billion agricultural industry.

Some studies show that the agricultural workers contribute $23.3 million to the economy of Michigan alone. Their financial impact on the US economy as a whole runs into the billions.

Fact: Most farm workers are not authorized to work legally in the U.S

In a National Agricultural Workers Survey (NAWS) conducted in 2002, 53% of all seasonal agricultural workers admitted they were not authorized to work in the U.S. However, presently it is believed that as many 75% of agricultural workers are undocumented.

Fact: A large unauthorized workforce is bad for workers and for growers.

Intermittent worksite raids, immigration audits and investigations, Social Security Administration (SSA) “No-Match” letters, and other immigration-enforcement activities slow down production at farms. This is bad for both growers and workers. The solution lies in legislation such as the (AgJOBS) Act.agriculture

Fact: Continued “deportation-only” policies without meaningful reform will cripple the agricultural sector:

According to the Farm Credit Associations of New York, a severe and prolonged disruption in labor would be the result of enhanced “deport only” policies. Additionally, more than 800 farms in New York alone would be out of business if this policy was fully implemented.

Fact: Native-born workers are not filling agricultural jobs:

As the native-born population in the US is growing older and better educated, few people aspire to work on farms. Moreover, studies show that immigrants who do work on farm usually have several years of experience in the area. Thus, there is no learning curve for them to overcome.

Migrant workers face risks to their fundamental freedoms on a daily basis. However, this does not stop many of them from seeking to support their dream of becoming citizens by doing hard, grueling work on the farms and in fields. As an immigration attorney in Ventura County, I use my experience and skills to make this dream a reality for many on a daily basis. Immigrant rights in Los Angeles is my passion and my specialty. Call me if you wish to speak to someone about your case.

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Question to Ask Your Immigration Attorney about Bail Bonds

There are vast differences between immigration bail bonds and normal bail bonds. For this reason, it will be of little value for you to seek out an attorney who is not familiar with the differences. In fact, it could cause things to turn out horribly for you if you do. This is the value of the free consultation my office offers all potential clients. Here are some questions to ask your attorney to help you prepare for your bail bond hearing.

What is an Immigration Bond Hearing?

An immigration hearing is proceedings in front of an immigration judge. The outcome of this hearing will determine the eligibility of an individual for bond and establish the amount of the bond. Just as is the case with a normal bond hearing you have the right to be represented by an attorney. This attorney should always be an immigration attorney.

How long have you been helping families with immigration bonds issues?

Experience is a great teacher. In fact, many people believe that it is the best teacher. Before you seek out an attorney who can help you prepare for your bond hearing, make sure that he or she is experienced in this field and that they have a proven track record of success.

What happens if the immigrant fails to show up for court?

As an attorney I strongly advise you to obey all laws that you are compelled to follow. For example, if you do not show up for court a warrant may be issued for your arrest which could lead to your being deported from the country. Thus, it is always best to show up for court on time no matter how much you may fear the outcome.

How much do you charge?

Finding out how much an attorney charges is one of the most important things you should know from the start. In deciding whether you can meet your financial obligation to the attorney you should consider that most attorneys will work to make out a payment schedule with potential clients. Also, know that what is at stake when it comes to immigration proceedings can be far costlier than any monetary expense. As someone who knows immigration rights in Los Angeles, the initial consultation is always free.

How will a consultation help me?

A consultation is of value to you in a number of ways. First, it lets a professional gauge the strength (and weaknesses) of your case. Second, it lets you know if the attorney is right for you. Lastly, it helps you prepare for subsequent legal proceedings.

No matter what your situation is you should always come to your consultation with a list of questions you wish to ask the attorney. Otherwise, the consultation will be of little value to you and he/she will not be able to determine whether or not you and he/she are compatible. So, if you are asking where I can find an immigration lawyer near me, look no further that my firm.

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5 Icons Who You Might Not Know Were Immigrants

Since the country’s founding, immigration has been one of the most divisive issues we have faced as a nation. This is ironic indeed since – with the exception of Native and African Americans – nearly every American who is alive today is the descendant of immigrants in one form or another. And since the current administration seems to be woefully ignorant of this fact, I would like to list some iconic Americans who were themselves immigrants. It is my intent to continue acknowledging these men and women who have made the development of this great nation possible.

  • Albert Einstein, Germany: This Nobel Prize–winning theoretical physicist who developed the general theory of relativity is not only an example of the contributions that immigrants have made to the country and indeed the world, his story is also an example of the dangerous effects of what prejudice can lead to. As a German Jew, Einstein fled Nazi regime just years before the Holocaust began.
  • Levi Strauss, Germany: Unlike Albert Einstein, Levi Strauss is perhaps more famous for his first name than for his last. Yes, Strauss famously founded the company Levis and to this day there is hardly a wardrobe in America that does not contain a pair of his ubiquitous jeans.
  • Patrick Ewing, Jamaica: Ewing moved to the U.S. from Jamaica at the age of 13 and learned to play basketball in high school. He was named outstanding player in 1984 when Georgetown won the NCAA and was a member of the U.S. Olympic team that won in 1984. Since then he has gone on to be named one of the top 50 players in the history of the NBA.
  • Bob Hope, England: Yes, arguably the most legendary American comedian of all time -Leslie Townes Hope – was actually born Eltham, County of London in 1903. Hope and his family emigrated from England when he was 17 years of age. For nearly a century, Hope had a distinguished career in radio, television, on Broadway and in movies. bob hope
  • Oscar de la Renta, Dominican Republic: This world famous fashion designer has dressed notables such as Jackie Kennedy, Hillary Clinton, Penelope Cruz and Taylor Swift to name just a few.
  • Rita Moreno: This EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony) winner was born in Puerto Rico. She immigrated to the mainland with her seamstress mother as a child and has gone on to win just about every entertainment award that can be earned.

It is somewhat frightening to think of how much our culture would be diminished without the contribution of the above individuals and many others whose talents helped to shape this nation. As an immigration lawyer from Ventura County, I recognize the contributions that all people can make to this country regardless of where they were born. I am immigration lawyer Erika Roman and I will speak to you about your case for free.

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5 Anti-Immigrant Extremists Groups that Are Now Active in United States

In the past, President Trump has called for sanctuary cities to publish a weekly list of crimes committed by “aliens.” Indeed, his entire immigration policy is based on the notion that immigrants are somehow victimizing innocent Americans with abandon. The unfortunate truth is that some Americans have taken it upon themselves to band together and victimize immigrants. Here is a list of just some of the more dangerous extremist groups that have done so.

  • Aryan Nations: In the 1980s and early 1990s neo-Nazis, racist skinhead and Klansmen were all allied with this group that has its origins in Idaho. This was the peak of the group’s influence. In 2000, the group was seriously weakened by a lawsuit filed against it by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC).
  • Fraternal Order of Alt-Knights (FOAK): FOAK has often been at the center of right-wing rallies and has made no qualms about advocating violence as a means of achieving their goals. In fact, its founder is a repeat felon himself.
  • Knights of the Ku Klux Klan: One of the oldest hate groups in America, the Klan can trace its origins back to the end of the civil war. And although it has gone through many transformations over the centuries, it still clings to its anti-immigrant, anti-black, anti-Catholic and Anti-Semitic doctrine. It also continues to threaten people who oppose its extremist ideology with violence.
  • Proud Boys: In addition to their anti-immigrant views, this group is also known for its anti-Muslim and misogynistic rhetoric. Recently, they have appeared at the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, where counter-protester Heather Danielle Heyer was killed. Donald Trump, as most people know, famously claimed that there were “fine people on both sides.”
  • Stormfront: Stormfront is a white nationalist, anti-Semitic and Holocaust denial group who have the distinction of having formed the Internet’s first hate site and forum. Moreover, according to the SLPC in the five years leading up to 2014, Stormfront members murdered nearly 100 people.

There are no groups who are more supportive of the First Amendment than attorneys such as me and journalists. However, the words one chooses to use do have consequences. This administration and many who echo its anti-immigrant rhetoric are inspiring throngs of people who use force and terror to make their point and don’t just stop at words. As an immigration lawyer from Oxnard I will continue to provide my clients with and immigration defense in Los Angeles.

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How Trump’s Immigrant Detention Policy is a Boon for Private Companies

One of the most disturbing aspects of a system that is already needlessly cruel is the news that some private companies are profiting from the mass detention of immigrants which is now the hallmark of this administration’s immigration policy. Here, is a look at this troubling development and a look at some of the key players who are profiting off of the misery of others.

Quick Facts about Immigrant Detention

  • It costs taxpayers in the state of California $144.35 per day for the government to maintain these facilities.
  • 60 percent of people are held in privately-run immigrant prisons. So much of the above money goes to private individuals and corporation who have seized upon the Trump administration’s cruel policies.
  • Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) uses a number of private contractors to build and maintain these facilities including GEO Corporation who in 2017 received a $184 million contract from the government. GEO Group – Florida-based company specializing in privatized corrections, detention, and mental health treatment – is currently the subject of a lawsuit that alleges that they treated inmates at these facilities inhumanly.
  • According to government itself, the average length of stay at any one immigrant prison or jail is was 34 days.
  • The average number of children in care of HHS has ranged from 11,151 to 14,226 so far in fiscal year 2019, according to HHS. Some of these children have allegedly been the victims of sexual abuse at the hands or their captors.

Private Companies that are Profiting from the Mass Detention of Immigrants

So what are some of the private companies that are profiting from deportation centers? The following are ICE contractors who profit in one way or another off from the mass detention of immigrants.

GEO Group and CoreCivic: These companies, as it so happens, donated nearly half a million dollars to Trump’s inaugural committee and to a Trump Super Pac in 2016, according to The Observer.

BCFS: This company has received $179 million in federal contracts since 2015.

General Dynamics: This defense contractor lobbied lawmakers to the tune of 11 million dollars last year to secure choice contracts including with ICE.trump

Johns Hopkins University: The Baltimore-based university has three contracts with ICE to provide “emergency medical training” to these facilities. Students there have protested the university’s links to ICE.

Microsoft: This tech giant handles ICE date processing for these facilities.

Thomson Reuters Special Services: This company has a $4.7 million contract with ICE.

The list goes on and on.

The good news is that there are people who are committed to shining a spotlight on these companies and the role they play in the mistreatment of their fellow human beings. As an immigration lawyer in Van Nuys I can tell you that I and many of my colleagues will not give up the fight until the immigration system is fairer and more compassionate despite the President’s efforts to make it otherwise. I am attorney Erika Roman and I will talk with you for free.

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5 Immigrant Advocacy Organizations to Donate to if You Support Immigrant’s Rights

One of Newton’s Laws – the third – states that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Similarly, as the nation’s immigration laws become more Draconian, there will always be those who stand in opposition to these arbitrary policies that have made it more difficult for people to seek asylum, imprisoned those who seek freedom in this country and separates children from their parents and parents from their children in some cases permanently. The following nonprofit organizations are defending immigrants’ legal and human rights. I invite anyone who is interested in preserving the rights of all people to support any of the following organizations in this critical time of need.

  • American Civil Liberties Union (Northern California): This nonprofit organization’s stated mission is “to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States.” It has constantly challenged nearly every edict on immigration that has come from this administration. During the Trump presidency the organization has seen a steep rise in membership and in donations. However, one can never give too much support to an organization that has been such a staunch defender of civil and human rights.
  • Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR): This is the largest organization in the US advocating for the rights of Muslims.
  • Families for Freedom: Families for Freedom are made up of former immigrant prisoners and their loved ones who have gathered together to fight the family separation policy the Trump administration has chosen to use as a deterrent to immigration.
  • The National Immigration Law Center: National Immigration Law Center: Established in 1979, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) is dedicated to defending the rights of low income immigrants. It does so by coordinating its efforts with local and national civil rights organizations and by educating policy makers on the plight of low income immigrants.
  • Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights: The plight of immigrant children has been in the news quite a bit lately including the heartbreaking image of the little girl whose father was caught up in an ICE raid in Mississippi recently. The Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights champions the right of unaccompanied immigrant children in this country. They attempt to influence immigration policy and by directly lending them assistance starting from the moment they enter the country.

This is just a small sample of the organizations that are taking the fight for fair and human immigration system directly to lawmakers and who are helping immigrants on the ground. I am an immigration rights Los Angeles who shares the goals of these organizations. So, if you are asking yourself “where can I find an immigration lawyer near me,” reach out to me on my site.

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Costs Involved in Becoming a US Citizen

Lately, we have all heard about the price that some people pay in blood, sweat and tears to become US citizens. Daily, some people even pay the ultimate price – their lives. However, there is also a financial cost involved in becoming or in attempting to become a US citizen. This cost can be rather expensive and even prohibitive to some without the guidance of an immigration attorney in Ventura County. Here is a look at the major steps and the accompanying costs of becoming a US citizen.

  • Attorney Fees ($1,500 to $2,000): Obviously, attorney’s fees vary greatly depending on the experience and location of the attorney. If you do hire an attorney and the price seems to be prohibitive know that many attorneys are willing to work out a fee payment schedule to fit your means. Also, know that an attorney may end up saving you in the long run by informing you of your options if you cannot afford certain fees.
  • Government Filing Fees ($725): This varies too depending on the type of form you are filing. For example, “Petition for Alien Relative” currently cost of $535. An “Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status” costs $1,140. And I–90 Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card cost $365. An “I–526 Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur” – the most expensive form to file – cost $1,500, etc. For a full filing fee schedule you can go to the USCIS website.
  • Document preparation, translations, etc… ($100 to $400): There are also usually miscellaneous fees involved in becoming a US citizen. For example you have to provide copies of certain documents and translations where applicable.

Exceptions and Special Circumstances

Not everyone pays the same amount for these fees. There are special exceptions and circumstances that can lower or eliminate some of these costs. For example, you can apply for certain fee reductions and waivers if you have limited means. This is why it is essential that you contact an attorney who specializes in immigration rights in Los Angeles. By attempting to go it on your own you risk being denied citizenship and you also risk losing a great deal of money. Moreover, immigration is becoming more difficult even when people are well prepared and go about it by following all the rules. My firm keeps track of all changes in the current immigration laws.

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Where the Major Presidential Candidates Stand on Immigration

“Immigration has always been a strength in this country.” Kirsten Gillibrand ~ Sen-NY

Whoever becomes President in 2020 will face many challenges when it comes to the issue of immigration. The left, right and center have all agreed that the system as it exists is in need of reform but there is no consensus on what reform is needed and how those changes will be implemented. But where do the major Democratic candidates stand – and there are more than 20 of them – on the issue of immigration? Here is a brief look at where some of the major candidates stand on this thorny issue.

  • Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders: Sanders’ views on immigration are relatively progressive as you might imagine. He supports DACA and a path to US citizenship for undocumented immigrants currently residing within the United States. In the Senate, Sanders voted against defunding sanctuary cities and has called family separation at the border “heartless and cruel.”
  • California Sen. Kamala Harris: Harris, a former DA, has expressed support for DACA but has been criticized by some in her own party for saying that “ICE should exist.”
  • New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand: Gillibrand has in the past voted to increase funding for ICE but has recently called for abolishing it. She is also a DACA supporter.
  • Former San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro: Castro – a second generation immigrant – supports a path to citizenship for law-abiding, undocumented immigrants, is against Trump’s border wall and regularly criticizes the President’s immigration policies. However, he does not support abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
  • New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker: Booker supports the DREAM Act and has said that the UN has a moral obligation to aid Syrian refugees.
  • Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke: O’Rourke opposes a US-Mexican border wall and has even called for the existing border fence in El Paso to come down.
  • California Rep. Eric Swalwell: Swalwell has repeatedly stated his support for DACA and vehemently opposes family separation.
  • Former Vice President Joe Biden: The former Vice President is a mixed bag on immigration. On one hand he has supported the Violence Against Women Act. On the other hand, he voted twice for extra fencing to go along the US border with Mexico.
  • Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren: Warren supports DACA, supports the abolishing of ICE and voted against Trump’s efforts to defund sanctuary cities.

Yes, whoever becomes the next President of the United State, he/she will face the challenges posed by immigration including problems that that the current President created himself. Whoever he/she may be as an immigration attorney in Van Nuys I will continue to fight for the rights of all people in the US regardless of their legal status. I am also an immigration attorney in Oxnard who will talk with you for free during an initial consultation.

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