KEY NOTES ON BIDEN’S IMMIGRATION POLICIES
President-elect Joe Biden began his first term with a purpose to mark new changes to immigration policy.
As of January 21, 2021, a new administration entered the White House with changes in mind. Although these changes will not transform the immigration system overnight, they are steps in a positive direction.
President Joe Biden used his executive orders to ensure these changes became laws immediately,.
Many historians believe that Biden’s immigration policies are the most progressive of all his predecessors. However, it is important to note that time has changed. Also, the United States is more diverse than years before. Here are some key notes on his immigration laws:
- The policy ended the national emergency at the United States-Mexico border. Some migrants thought this meant the border was open for crossing; however, president Biden warned them not to attempt to cross the securely-guarded borders.
- Biden issued an executive order which provides safe and orderly processing of asylum seekers at the border.
Also, he ended the Muslim Travel Ban. This was one of former president Trump’s executive action in 2017 which banned travel to the United States for 90 days from seven predominantly Muslim countries. These countries are: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.
- There are new changes to Naturalization test (citizenship).
- In addition, Biden’s executive order ended punishment for ‘sanctuary cities’ who do not police interior enforcement.
- It creates an open path to citizenship for immigrants. In prior years, many immigrants are not certain of how to enter with visa and become citizens. But, this proposed pathway will allow immigrants to obtain work permit and become permanent resident within 5 to 7 years.
- The executive order preserved DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) – allowing them to attend school and/or work legally.
- It mandated that the U.S. Census Bureau count undocumented non-citizens during census.
- There is less hostility toward immigrants and inclusion of new Americans of color.
- Lastly, President Biden’s order called an end to family separation; instead, it reunited separated families.
One more bonus key note on changes to the immigration law.
One of the major changes to immigration law is the end of public charge.
Last year, immigration advocates were furious after President Trump announced a public charge. This law mandated that USCIS create an additional requirement which made it difficult for immigrants to become permanent resident. It was a hurdle for Applicants who rely on government benefits.
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