April 22, 2014

ICE Agrees To Limit Use Of Shackles On Immigrants In San Francisco Immigration Courts

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agreed to avoid shackling immigrants at the San Francisco immigration court in many hearings. Immigrants will still be shackled at a type of brief, procedural hearing in which several detainees are addressed at the same time.

In 2011 the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California and others filed a lawsuit against ICE. The lawsuit says detainees at the San Francisco court wear metal restraints on their wrists, ankles and waists and that most are bused from jails several hours away, spending hours in shackles before, during and after their hearings.

A federal judge in San Francisco was scheduled to consider Thursday whether to approve the settlement in the lawsuit, ACLU attorney Julia Harumi Mass said the agreement applies only to the San Francisco court, which serves more than 2,000 immigrants a year who are in ICE custody at three county jails in Northern California.- Huff Post

Juana Villegas wears handcuffs while demonstrating outside the Tennessee Supreme Court building on Thursday, June 14, 2012, in Nashville, Tenn. In 2008, Villegas was jailed in Nashville and kept in shackles while in labor with her son, Gael Carachure, now 3 years old. Inside the Supreme Court chamber Thursday, a Nashville immigration attorney argued that the Davidson County sheriff should be barred from participating in a federal program that lets deputies perform some of the duties of immigration | ASSOCIATED PRESS

April 15, 2014

Immigrants Make San Francisco One of the Top Metropolitans for High Tech Entrepreneurs

Researchers at the Kauffman Foundation have found that the importance of highly skilled immigrants is growing "because immigrants are far more likely to start businesses – particularly high-tech companies – than are the native-born".

This can serve as a lesson for metro areas trying to attract these types of entrepreneurs. Foreign born entrepreneurs are more likely to locate in areas that have ethnically diverse populations. It is not surprising then to find that San Francisco along with Los Angeles and New York was home to about a third of all immigrant high-tech entrepreneurs in the country in 2011.

Source: Kauffman Foundation

April 01, 2014

Chile Added to Visa Waiver Program

On February 28, 2014, the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of State designated Chile as a country that is eligible to participate in the Visa Waiver Program.  Accordingly, this rule updates the list of countries designated for participation in the Visa Waiver Program by adding Chile. This final rule is effective on March 31, 2014.

Eligible citizens, nationals and passport holders from designated Visa Waiver Program countries may apply for admission to the United States at U.S. ports of entry as nonimmigrant aliens for a period of ninety days or less for business or pleasure without first obtaining a nonimmigrant visa, provided that they are otherwise eligible for admission under applicable statutory and regulatory requirements.