Posted by Rachel Levitan on Tue, Nov 27, 2012 at 11:52 am
This year’s historic election-day wins in Maryland, Maine, and Washington supporting gay marriage are emblematic of the dramatic strides that the U.S. has taken to recognize the social and legal rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) individuals. Parallel to this domestic progress, the US government has publicly supported the rights of sexual minorities internationally. In December, the White House released a presidential memo directing all agencies engaged abroad to “ensure that U.S. diplomacy and foreign
Posted by Bethany Orlikowski on Tue, Nov 27, 2012 at 11:28 am
As Congress reconvened last week in Washington, advocates around the country have been urging legislators to finally reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Earlier this year, the Senate and House passed conflicting versions of the bill. Please take a moment to ask your elected officials to pass the Senate version of VAWA, which maintains programs and services for immigrant survivors of sexual and domestic violence, as opposed to the House version, which would roll back these protections.
Posted by Bethany Orlikowski on Tue, Nov 27, 2012 at 11:12 am
In early November, Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) announced that they will resume discussions about how to fix the U.S. immigration system. There has been a renewed focus in Washington on immigration reform in the wake of the Presidential election, in which President Obama won 71% of the Hispanic vote. The Senators have said that their plan would include previously-discussed components such as biometric ID cards, border security, temporary worker programs, and a path to citizenship
Posted by Bethany Orlikowski on Fri, Nov 09, 2012 at 12:40 pm
In his victory speech, President Obama cited "fixing our immigration system" as one of the main areas of focus for his next term. Please join HIAS and the Interfaith Immigration Coalition for a conference call and webinar on Monday, November 12th at 4:00pm EST to learn more about the potential impact of the election on immigration reform. Contact Liza Lieberman for more information or to RSVP.
Posted by Bethany Orlikowski on Fri, Nov 09, 2012 at 12:33 pm
The 2012 General Assembly (GA) of the Jewish Federations of North America will be held November 11-13 in Baltimore, MD. Each year, the GA brings together Federation members, national Jewish organizations, and volunteers to learn about and discuss critical issues facing our community. If you are attending this year's GA, make sure to visit the HIAS booth in the Exhibit Hall to meet our staff and learn about how to get involved in our work in the U.S. and around
Posted by Mark Hetfield on Thu, Nov 08, 2012 at 14:23 pm
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, there still are thousands of people without heat, water, or electricity, many from the Russian-speaking, Jewish communities in Brooklyn, Staten Island, and New Jersey. There is a desperate need for donations, supplies, and volunteers. Below are some ways you can assist with Hurricane Sandy Relief in the New York area.
UJA Federation of New York
Posted by Genever McBain on Fri, Oct 26, 2012 at 10:48 am
The Economist just posted an article about Leonid Razvozzhayev, who currently is being held in pretrial detention in Lefortovo prison. A national of the Russian Federation, he disappeared on October 19 after approaching the HIAS office in Kyiv, where HIAS provides free legal assistance to asylum seekers in partnership with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), who had referred Mr. Razvozzhaev to HIAS.
Posted by Bethany Orlikowski on Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 14:48 pm
Earlier this month, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that it will temporarily extend all 287(g) agreements through the end of the year, in order to provide the agency with time to consider the program's future. The agreements, made between ICE and 57 state and local law enforcement agencies, deputize local officials to assist ICE in enforcing Federal immigration law. The program has come under fire because of accusations of racial profiling as well as inefficient allocation of resources, especially
Posted by Bethany Orlikowski on Thu, Oct 18, 2012 at 10:41 am
In Tuesday night's town hall presidential debate, President Obama and Governor Romney were asked a question about immigration. Governor Romney said that "we welcome legal immigrants into this country." He expressed support for streamlining the legal system, issuing visas for immigrants with science and math degrees, stopping illegal immigration, and an employment verification system. He objected to "amnesty" and issuing driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants. He suggested that children who came to the U.S. illegally could have a pathway to
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Recipients Denied Comprehensive Health Care Coverage - Act NowAdvocacy Updates
Posted by Bethany Orlikowski on Thu, Oct 18, 2012 at 10:37 am
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy enacted by the White House this summer allows young people under 31 who were brought to the United States as children and are currently undocumented to apply for relief from deportation or removal proceedings for two years. While DACA would not provide a path to citizenship for young people, it allows them temporary lawful residence, work authorization, and certain state benefits like in-state tuition. However, the Obama administration has recently proposed that
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