Officers with Immigration and Customs Enforcement may begin deporting families in California and throughout the country who have received deportation orders from a judge. The agency's intention is to start cracking down on immigrants even if they do not have a criminal record and to target what are known as sanctuary cities.
This news was delivered to members of Congress on May 22. The interim director of the agency said he expected a backlash but was determined to enforce the orders. The hearing of the House Border Security and Maritime subcommittee was held to discuss how to handle the waves of immigrants fleeing violence in Central America.
Rep. Martha McSally, who chaired the meeting, said the immigration system was broken and loopholes needed to be closed. She said people only needed to tell agents that they had a "credible fear" to begin the process of asylum seeking. Rep. Nanette Barragan said the families should not be assumed to be threats and being granted asylum did not mean that claim was a fraudulent one. According to immigration officials, of the Central American migrants who arrived at the border in a caravan in April, more than 300 were allowed into the country. More than 200 have passed credible fear interviews.
Immigration law is undergoing rapid changes. There are also changes in how it is being applied such as an increasing focus on rounding up people who are living in the country illegally even if they do not have criminal records. Therefore, people who are seeking asylum, facing deportation or who have questions about their immigration status or whose loved ones are in this situation might want to consult an attorney.