February 2023 Immigration Update

Welcome Corps

Disclaimer: The information provided in this video does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available in this video are for general informational purposes only. Information may not constitute the most up-to-date information.

Senate Introduces 2023 Version of the DREAM Act

Senator Lindsay Graham (R- South Carolina) and Senator Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) reintroduced the DREAM Act to the Senate on February 9th, 2023. If passed into law, the DREAM Act would provide a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who came into the country as minors and colloquially known as Dreamers.

Biden-Harris Administration announces end to COVID-19 Pandemic Health Emergency Declaration 

Title 42, the current health policy used to rapidly expel asylum seekers and other migrants at the Southern Border, will end with expiration of COVID-19 Emergency Status. Title 42 is a health and safety policy it has effectively been used as a de facto immigration policy for the last 3 years. 

  • Title 42 allows for the closure of ports of entry and rapid expulsion of individuals crossing the border, ostensibly to prevent the spread of disease 
  • The last two Presidential administrations have used Title 42 to expulse asylum seekers caught crossing the border 
  • A Title 42 expulsion is not the same as a formal deportation order and bears none of the same long-term legal ramifications 
  • As a result, the use of Title 42 was relatively ineffective as many individuals who were apprehended and expulsed were apprehended again, sometime multiple times, as people tried to cross the border again with days or weeks of their initial apprehension and expulsion

This will have a major impact implantation of rules and security regulations at the border.

Biden-Harris Administration proposes new Asylum policy

With Title 42 moving out of effect in May the Biden-Harris Administration has announced a new 153-page rule on Asylum Policy to attempt and prevent the Asylum system from being overloaded immediately. This new rule is similar to several Trump-Pence policies that would have placed eligibility limits on asylum seekers, however the Trump-Pence era rules were struck down for unconstitutionality.

These new policies raise some concerns for asylum seekers:

  • Lack of reliable access to internet connection for asylum seekers to set appointments 
  • High demand for appointments and low availability is making it very difficult for full families with children to acquire an adequate number of appointment slots 
  • The exemption for Unaccompanied Minors may lead to more desperate families sending children alone to try and get across and get access to Asylum procedures 

State of the Union Address

During his State of the Union Address, President Biden encouraged both Houses of Congress to Act on Immigration Reform, specifically pushing for passage of the DREAM Act

Update on Special Process for Venezuelans, Cubans, Haitians, and Nicaraguans

A group of states, led by Texas, are suing the Biden-Harris Administration to end this program. DHS has reported that over 7,000 people have applied through sponsorship through this program, with over 1,700 having already been resettled as Humanitarian Parolees in the United States.