Suddenly, this small South Carolina town has no police. Why do critics, officers blame the mayor?
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Situated in the southeast of Lexington County near where Interstate 77 ends at Interstate 26, the town of Pine Ridge has a small police department protecting its population of 2,000 people. At most, the town would normally have three full-time officers on staff, supplemented by part-time officers.But Pine Ridge has been without a functioning police department since Oct. 13, when Lt. Vincent Silano, the town’s interim police chief and only serving full-time officer, resigned after only five months on the job. Silano is the fourth chief to step down in the last three years, and ...
The State (Columbia, S.C.)
'Do they just not care?' Miami immigrants troubled by surge of Latino support for Trump
MIAMI — Unable to vote because of her immigration status, Maria Elena Hernandez, a Nicaraguan janitorial worker with temporary protected status (TPS)Along with fellow members of her union, a local chapter of Service Employees International, Hernandez spent the days leading up to Nov. 3 knocking on doors across Miami-Dade and talking to voters about Joe Biden, whom she considers to be more “in favor of workers and immigrants” than President Donald Trump. For years, Hernandez has also encouraged immigrant co-workers eligible for citizenship to complete the naturalization process, so that they ca...
Under Trump, hundreds of small changes in immigration rules have had a huge impact
PHILADELPHIA — Immigration lawyers call it the “no-blank-space policy.”In 2019, the Trump administration imposed a rule requiring immigrants seeking asylum or other humanitarian relief to fill in every space on the application, even if the question doesn’t apply to them. If they leave one spot empty — say, they don’t write down a middle name, because they don’t have one — the document is rejected.That causes more than delay in refiling. It can derail entire claims and open the door to deportation. Last week two national immigrant advocacy groups filed a federal class-action lawsuitBut the blan...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Commentary: Immigration is the story of our families
President-elect Joe Biden is expected to restore protection to “Dreamers,” provide a pathway to citizenship for other immigrants, rescind his predecessor’s travel bans and allow in more refugees. It is a welcome break from the cruelty of his predecessor, who separated children from their parents and put them in cages.Immigration is often discussed as an abstract political concept. But for so many of us, it’s the story of our family.My mother, Violetta Tironi, born in Milan, Italy, in 1931, was a studious girl who liked sports. Her father, Sergio, was a police officer. Her mother, Giuseppina, w...
Tribune News Service
Michael Smolens: Biden plans big changes in immigration system — some won't be easy
Nearly 15 years ago, then-Sen. Joe Biden voted to fund hundreds of miles of new fencing along the border with Mexico.He was joined by Sens. Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and other Democrats.One of the first things President-elect Biden said he will do after being sworn in on Jan. 20 is halt the construction of President Donald Trump’s border wall, though he doesn’t plan on tearing down what has been built so far.About $15 billion has been spent on the project and 450 miles of wall have been constructed, all but 12 miles of it replacing some kind of existing barrier.Biden has pledged to quickly...
The San Diego Union-Tribune
Immigration advocates make some election gains, but face pushback
For cities and counties looking to protect immigrants living in the United States illegally from deportation, November’s election results were a double-edged sword.Some sheriffs were elected in cities and their suburbs in part by touting their opposition to federal deportation efforts. And the Biden administration likely will support so-called sanctuary cities and allow local officials more say in adjudicating who gets deported, experts say.But Republican-dominated state legislatures that have favored strict immigration policies kept GOP majorities in the election. They may clamp down on the n...
Michigan man who fought deportation to Iraq sworn in as US citizen
DETROIT — The lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit that sought the release of 1,400 Iraqi Americans was sworn in as a United States citizen on Friday after winning his immigration case.Usama “Sam” Hamama of West Bloomfield Township said he finally feels liberated.“I honestly told my wife ‘something’s gone.’ I just feel like my mind, back, shoulders, you feel free,” Hamama told The Detroit News. “Where I came from, I didn’t have rights, and when I came here, I didn’t respect the rights, and now I finally feel like I have a responsibility for my own. I thank God, I really do.”The case, filed...
The Detroit News
It just got harder for immigrants: The US naturalization test is about to change
MIAMI — U.S. legal permanent residents who apply for citizenship through naturalization on or after Dec. 1 will face a more challenging test — in which immigrants must prove they can read, write and speak basic English, and have essential knowledge of U.S. history and government.U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, or USCIS, announced Friday the implementation of a revised version of the citizenship civics test for naturalization applicants with a filing date (also known as a receipt date) of Dec. 1 and beyond.The test will evaluate an immigrant’s knowledge of American history, governmen...
What will a Biden presidency mean for California? A lot fewer lawsuits, for one
SAN JOSE, Calif. — Donald Trump clashed with California throughout his presidency like nowhere else in the country over everything from immigration to automobile efficiency. By a two-to-one margin, Californians backed his Democratic challenger Joe Biden for president.So how might things be more golden for the Golden State with Biden in the White House?Well for starters, California won’t be suing the administration so much. Under Attorney General Xavier Becerra, California filed more than 100 lawsuits against the Trump administration — from protecting “dreamer” immigrants to regulation of gun p...
The Mercury News
Editorial: Hold federal officials accountable for separating migrant families
The needless trauma inflicted on children in President Donald Trump’s immigration crackdown remains alive. Court-appointed advocates cannot find the parents — still — for 545 children taken away from their families in 2017 and 2018. That includes about 60 who were under age 5 when forcibly separated.That’s years of growing, learning and loving missed out on, forever. That’s a tragedy that must remain in this nation’s consciousness. Those responsible must be held accountable.Trump has tried to obfuscate the cruelty of the decision to separate families to deter migration. Information that trickl...
The Seattle Times