Many people in Tennessee have been concerned about changes to U.S. immigration law made by the Trump administration, especially people who are looking to protect their status in the country. People may feel uncertain about the future, especially given the frequent changes and new executive rules that alter the way that visa or green card applications are handled. On Jan. 23, 2020, the administration issued another rule changing the way that visa applicants are treated, this time addressing pregnant women. According to reports, consular officials were directed to deny visas to pregnant women unless they can show a consular officer that they are not coming to the U.S. for the birth or have a legitimate medical need.
The "Return to Mexico" initiative of the Trump administration has caused significant worry among friends and family of asylum seekers in Tennessee and nationwide. People who arrive at the southern border to make a claim for asylum were, in the past, often admitted to the United States. They may have been detained or released to the community, especially if they had family members or loved ones willing to support them and vouch for them. Under the new policy, however, over 55,000 asylum seekers have been forced to stay in Mexican, even after they present themselves to a U.S. border official and make a claim for asylum.
When Tennessee residents think about the requirements for an individual to become a naturalized U.S. citizen, child support payments may be the last thing on their mind. However, when a person applies to become a naturalized U.S. citizen, one of the questions they are asked is if they have ever failed to pay child support or alimony.
Tennessee residents will likely be aware that thousands of Central American migrants have entered the United States in recent months hoping to be granted asylum. Some of these migrants are LGBT couples who are fleeing persecution and violence in countries where they are not permitted to marry or enter into civil unions. These couples are usually separated when they make their petitions for asylum because U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services policy only allows couples to remain together while they wait for a hearing if they can produce a civil union or marriage certificate.
Since the tightening of immigration rules at the beginning of the Trump administration, it has become more difficult for ballroom dance studios in Tennessee and other states to hire the instructors they need. Even when studios have found the right applicants, deportations and other processes have stymied the hiring process. Since the most popular ballroom dance forms are foreign, hiring instructors from overseas is often necessary.
Immigrants in Tennessee and throughout the country are unlikely to move around based on what states offer them better health care access. This was one of the findings of researchers at Stanford University, who used data from the American Community Survey to determine that expansion of public health care options was unlikely to lead to an influx of immigrants.
Expedited removal is the process of removing a non-citizen from the United States without a hearing before an immigration judge. This is contrasted with normal removal proceedings which involve a hearing before an immigration judge to determine first the non-citizen's removability and then, if removable, any eligibility for relief under the Immigration and Nationality Act ("INA").
Tennessee residents who follow international news will likely be aware that President Trump recently announced that he planned to recall U.S. troops from Syria. A fierce reaction from both sides of the political aisle has prompted the White House to revise its position, but questions still linger about American intentions in the region and what will be done to protect Syrian Kurds who have put themselves in harm's way by working with U.S. troops.
Individuals in Tennessee and around the country who are taken into custody by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services would be required to provide a sample of their DNA if a measure proposed by the Trump administration on Oct. 21 is implemented. The proposal would allow information derived from the genetic material to be added to a database maintained by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The proposed policy change was published in the Federal Register on Oct. 22. The public has 20 days to submit comments about the measure.
Tennessee readers might be interested to learn that President Donald Trump signed a proclamation on Oct. 4 requiring people immigrating to the U.S. to acquire health insurance. The document states that immigrants should no longer be allowed to "saddle" the U.S. healthcare system.