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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Unauthorized Alien Students: Issues and "DREAM Act" Legislation

Unauthorized Alien Students: Issues and "DREAM Act" Legislation

Date: March 21, 2012
Creator: Bruno, Andorra
Description: The 109th and 110th Congresses considered, but did not enact, comprehensive immigration reform legislation that included large-scale legalization programs for unauthorized aliens. In the aftermath of these unsuccessful efforts, some interested parties have urged the President and Congress to pursue more limited legislation to address the status of unauthorized alien students. Such legislation is commonly referred to as the "DREAM Act."
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Immigration of Temporary Lower-Skilled Workers: Current Policy and Related Issues

Immigration of Temporary Lower-Skilled Workers: Current Policy and Related Issues

Date: March 20, 2012
Creator: Bruno, Andorra
Description: U.S. employers in various industries argue that they need to hire foreign workers to perform lower-skilled jobs, while others maintain that many of these positions could be filled by U.S. workers. While the discussion of current guest worker programs in this report focuses on the H-2A and H- 2B visas, it also covers the Summer Work Travel (SWT) program, the largest of several programs under the J-1 visa for participants in work- and study-based exchange visitor programs. The SWT program is particularly relevant because participants work largely in unskilled jobs, including H-2B-like seasonal jobs at resorts and amusement parks.
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U.S. Immigration Policy on Permanent Admissions

U.S. Immigration Policy on Permanent Admissions

Date: March 13, 2012
Creator: Wasem, Ruth Ellen
Description: Four major principles underlie current U.S. policy on permanent immigration: the reunification of families, the admission of immigrants with needed skills, the protection of refugees, and the diversity of admissions by country of origin. Against competing priorities for increased immigration are those who offer options to scale back immigration levels, with options ranging from limiting family-based legal permanent residents to the immediate relatives of U.S. citizens to confining employment-based legal permanent residents exceptional, extraordinary, or outstanding individuals.
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Refugee Admissions and Resettlement Policy

Refugee Admissions and Resettlement Policy

Date: March 7, 2012
Creator: Bruno, Andorra
Description: Typically, the annual number of refugees that can be admitted into the United States, known as the refugee ceiling, and the allocation of these numbers by region are set by the President after consultation with Congress at the start of each fiscal year. For FY2012, the worldwide refugee ceiling is 76,000, with 73,000 admissions numbers allocated among the regions of the world and 3,000 numbers comprising an unallocated reserve. Overseas processing of refugees is conducted through a system of three priorities for admission. Priority 1 comprises cases involving persons facing compelling security concerns. Priority 2 comprises cases involving persons from specific groups of special humanitarian concern to the United States (e.g., Iranian religious minorities). Priority 3 comprises family reunification cases involving close relatives of persons admitted as refugees or granted asylum. Special legislative provisions facilitate relief for certain refugee groups.
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Immigration Legislation and Issues in the 112th Congress

Immigration Legislation and Issues in the 112th Congress

Date: January 12, 2012
Creator: Bruno, Andorra
Description: This report discusses immigration-related issues that have received legislative action or are of significant congressional interest in the 112th Congress.
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Immigration-Related Detention: Current Legislative Issues

Immigration-Related Detention: Current Legislative Issues

Date: January 12, 2012
Creator: Siskin, Alison
Description: As Congress considers addressing some of the problems in the nation's immigration system, the detention of noncitizens in the United States may be an issue as Congress may choose to reevaluate detention priorities (i.e., who should be detained) and resources. There are many policy issues surrounding detention of aliens. The Illegal Immigrant Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRIRA) increased the number of aliens subject to mandatory detention, and raised concerns about the justness of mandatory detention, especially as it is applied to asylum seekers arriving without proper documentation. Additionally, as DHS increases its ability to identify aliens who are subject to removal from local jails in more remote locations, the nationwide allocation of detention space may become an issue.
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Overview of Immigration Issues in the 112th Congress

Overview of Immigration Issues in the 112th Congress

Date: January 12, 2012
Creator: Wasem, Ruth Ellen
Description: This report synthesizes immigration issues as a multi-tiered debate. It breaks down the U.S. immigration law and policy into key elements: border control and visa security; legal immigration; documentation and verification; interior immigration enforcement; integration, status, and benefits; and refugees and other humanitarian populations. This report also delineates the debate in the 112th Congress for a range of issues, including border security, criminal aliens, and worksite enforcement.
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Birthright Citizenship Under the 14th Amendment of Persons Born in the United States to Alien Parents

Birthright Citizenship Under the 14th Amendment of Persons Born in the United States to Alien Parents

Date: January 10, 2012
Creator: Lee, Margaret Mikyung
Description: Background of birthright citizenship to alien parents in the U.S. The report ends with a detail of amendments in the 112th Congress that would amend the Constitution to exclude from citizenship at birth persons born in the United States whose parents are unlawfully present in the United States or are non-immigrant aliens.
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Border Security: Immigration Enforcement Between Ports of Entry

Border Security: Immigration Enforcement Between Ports of Entry

Date: January 6, 2012
Creator: Rosenblum, Marc R.
Description: This report concludes by raising additional questions about future investments at the border, how to weigh such investments against other enforcement strategies, and the relationship between border enforcement and the broader debate about U.S. immigration policy.
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Temporary Protected Status: Current Immigration Policy and Issues

Temporary Protected Status: Current Immigration Policy and Issues

Date: December 13, 2011
Creator: Wasem, Ruth Ellen
Description: This report is a brief overview of current policies regarding temporatry protected status (TPS), which is relief from removal under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). It includes information about humanitarian migrants, temporary protected status, other blanket forms of relief, nationalities receiving protections, and issues with TPS, as well as recent legislation.
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