On Wednesday, January 20, 2021, the Biden Administration sent a bill to Congress that would modernize and reform the immigration system. While this bill will undergo significant changes before it would pass, the elements of the bill are the following:
The bill would create a path to lawful status for all those in the country before January 1, 2021. The bill would provide 5 years of temporary status and then a 3-year path to citizenship. It would include those here in DACA status as well as those in TPS.
The bill would address the root causes of illegal immigration by researching and providing economic and other assistance to Central American countries to counter violence and improve economic conditions which are the key drivers of illegal immigration. The bill would establish legal processes to apply for asylum from the home country.
The bill would effectively clear the family-based and employment-based backlogs and eliminate per-country caps for legal immigration. It would also stop provide a greater role for cities and states to determine shortage occupations and job needs based on local conditions.
The bill would increase the number of immigration judges across the country and would provide counsel to children apprehended at the border.
The bill would work to establish a commission made up of business leaders to investigate ways to improve and/or replace the I-9 and E-Verify system. It would also expand protections for victims of workplace exploitation and labor violations by expanding U visa eligibility.
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