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The Assault on Due Process

The Assault on Due Process and the Need for an Independent Immigration Court
Thursday, May 2, 2019 | 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Program Fee: Free for Members and Non-Lawyers | $15 for Non-Member Lawyers
Non-Lawyers Please Call to Register (212) 382 – 6663 

Description:
The Immigration Court makes decisions with life altering consequences for immigrants. It determines who is to be detained and who is to be released from custody, who is to be deported and who is to be granted relief from deportation. Immigration judges have immense responsibilities and as the broken immigration law continues unfixed year after year, the caseload carried by immigration judges and the complexity of the issues they must handle increases exponentially. There are now almost one million cases in the Immigration Court backlog. While theoretically independent decision makers, immigration judges are employees of the Department of Justice, the same department that represents the government against immigrants in federal court immigration cases, and they serve at the pleasure of the Attorney General. 

Recent changes by the federal administration have imposed requirements and restrictions that directly interfere with the independence of judges, for example, the imposition of case quotas and the removal of judges from cases for exercising judicial independence. The Attorney General has also certified cases to himself, using them to issue decisions restricting the power of judges to control their dockets by limiting when a judge can grant a continuance, administratively close a case, or terminate removal proceedings.  In other cases he has certified to himself, the Attorney General has overturned established case law in order to restrict the claims to relief that immigrants can make in Immigration Court proceedings.

This program will examine the current structure of this administrative judicial system-its inherent flaws and shortcomings and the recent restrictions by the Attorney General that have severely impacted the judicial independence of the court. Proposals for immigration court reform will be presented and discussed by the speakers including the establishment of a new Article I court.

Moderator: 
Beth Fertig,
Senior Reporter, WNYC Radio

Speakers:
Andrea Saenz,
Supervising Attorney, Immigration Practice, Brooklyn Defender Services
Hon. Amiena Khan*,
Eastern Region Vice President, National Association of Immigration Judges
Hon. Mimi Tsankov**,
Grievance Chair Officer, National Association of Immigration Judges 
Jill Family,
Widener University Commonwealth Professor of Law and Government, Director, Law and Government Institute
Elizabeth (Betty) Stevens,
Chair, Federal Bar Association Immigration Law Section

*The speaker is the Eastern Region Vice President of the National Association of Immigration Judges. Her opinions are not necessarily the opinions of the U.S. Department of Justice, the Attorney General or the Executive Office for Immigration Review. The opinions are her own, formed in consultation with the membership of the NAIJ

** The speaker is the Grievance Chair Officer of the National Association of Immigration Judges. Her opinions are not necessarily the opinions of the U.S. Department of Justice, the Attorney General or the Executive Office for Immigration Review. The opinions are her own, formed in consultation with the membership of the NAIJ.


Sponsoring Association Committee:
Immigration & Nationality Law Committee, Vickie Neilson, Chair

Co-sponsoring Association Committee: 
Pro Bono & Legal Services Committee, Amy P. Barasch & Jennifer K. Brown, Co-chairs 
Social Welfare Law Committee, Susan E. Welber, Chair
Task Force for the Independence of Lawyers and Judges, William August Wilson III, Chair 

Related Resource: 
If you are interested in this program, you might also be interested in these City Bar resource:
The Immigration Courts and Due Process - 44th Street Podcast: The Immigration Courts and Due Process
Strengthening & Reforming America's Immigration Court System - Testimony
Quotas in Immigration Courts Would Be Neither Efficient Nor Just
Ensuring Right to Counsel For Minors Facing Removal Proceedings: Testimony


Where
42 West 44th Street New York, NY 10036 UNITED STATES

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