Saturday, November 10, 2007

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Does Not Detain?

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration (USCIS) is saying it does not enforce immigration law, yet there have been reports around the country that people have been picked up when they visit USCIS offices as they are processing residency status. There is a meeting soon in northern Virginia about immigration applications etc. It is even at a church. Even though ICE supposedly won't be there, its difficult to imagine ICE is not somehow involved, after all they enter homes without warrants, don't allow detainees due process... and comport themselves in a number of ways that do not make them a trustworthy agency.

Agency's Message: No Reason To Fear Us
Dec. 1 Forum Aims To Debunk Myths
By Karin Brulliard
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, November 10, 2007; B04

The Northern Virginia office of the federal agency that processes immigration applications will hold its first public forum next month to answer questions from immigrants.

The forum also is intended to spread word that the agency, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, or USCIS, is distinct from its feared federal cousins, the Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE.

"We don't want people to fear us," said Greg Christian, director of the Vienna office of USCIS. "We want to debunk the myths of USCIS and help people understand that we're here to provide a service."

The agency is often assailed by applicants and immigration lawyers as an impenetrable bureaucracy with complicated forms and a help hotline that dispenses unreliable information. It has also recently been under fire for raising application fees.

But USCIS does not arrest illegal immigrants. That is usually the province of ICE or U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which also are divisions of the Department of Homeland Security. Immigrants often confuse the agencies, Christian said...

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