Barely two weeks into his administration, President Trump has already begun implementing some of the immigration-related promises made on the campaign trail. Two, in particular, have received widespread attention and sparked anxiety among immigrants throughout the country: one ordering the construction of a wall along the border with Mexico and another requiring local law police to enforce federal immigration laws. Immigration lawyers throughout the nation note that these executive orders are vaguely worded, creating uncertainty about their impact on U.S. immigrants and the nation at large.
Building the Border Wall
Donald Trump made building a border wall a cornerstone of his campaign, claiming that it would substantially reduce the flow of undocumented immigrants. While his recent executive order may have authorized the federal government to begin construction, the project faces significant hurdles. The funds must first be allocated by Congress, which may hesitate to spend billions of dollars on infrastructure that even border protection officials claim is not necessary.
Local Police & Immigration
Previously, most undocumented aliens were only deported after being convicted of a crime, but President Trump's executive order expands the program to include anyone charged with a crime. Typically, when ICE learns that a police department has detained an undocumented immigrant, they issue a formal request that the county holds the inmate for an additional 48 hours. Complying with this request is voluntary, and many police departments in jurisdictions with high immigrant populations routinely refuse. Currently, several cities are challenging the executive order in court, and there is considerable doubt about whether the President has the authority to withhold federal funds from cities and states, and how much.
Berd & Klauss, PLLC, NYC immigration lawyers, are closely monitoring the fast-paced changes to American immigration policy. They have provided assistance to clients from around the world dealing with a broad range of issues, from visa applications to deportation threats. Follow them on Facebook for more updates and interpretation of new developments, visit their website for more information, or call (212) 461-7152 for a consultation with an accomplished immigration lawyer today.