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E. Scott Lloyd has been named Director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement, the office at the Department of Health and Human Services tasked with assisting refugees resettle in the United States. Mr. Lloyd's background includes government service, work in the private sector, and a strong devotion to conservative Christian causes.
Scott Lloyd, Director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement.
Mr. Lloyd got his start helping his law school professor represent the parents of Terri Schiavo, a woman in a persistent vegetative state. The case pitted Ms. Schiavo's husband and legal guardian against Ms. Schiavo's parents:
Schiavo's husband argued that Schiavo would not have wanted prolonged artificial life support without the prospect of recovery, and elected to remove her feeding tube. Schiavo's parents argued in favor of continuing artificial nutrition and hydration and challenged Schiavo's medical diagnosis. The highly publicized and prolonged series of legal challenges presented by her parents caused a seven-year delay before Schiavo's feeding tube was ultimately removed [in 2005, leading to her death].
Mr. Lloyd built on this experience by assisting Americans United for Life (the self-described "legal architect of the pro-life movement") to develop a policy on end-of-life issues. He also helped a Congressional Subcommittee prepare for a hearing and issue a report on the "chemical abortion drug" RU-486.
In 2010, Mr. Lloyd co-founded a law firm called Legal Works Apostolate, "a full-service law firm providing effective representation and counsel, informed by the particular concerns of families and institutions that must navigate the 'thickets of the law' while remaining faithful to Church teaching." All of the firm's attorneys and staff "undertake or persist only in work that is consistent with our deep and abiding concern for the right to life and the sacramental nature of marriage."
Immediately prior to his job at ORR, Mr. Lloyd was employed by the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic fraternal and charitable organization, where he focused on assisting Christian refugees and other religious minorities persecuted by ISIS. As an organization, the KoC has expressed pro-immigrant views. For example, in 2006 (before Mr. Lloyd's time), the KoC called upon “the President and the U.S. Congress to agree upon immigration legislation that not only gains control over the process of immigration, but also rejects any effort to criminalize those who provide humanitarian assistance to illegal immigrants, and provides these immigrants an avenue by which they can emerge from the shadows of society and seek legal residency and citizenship in the U.S.” The organization has also been politically active, particularly in campaigns across the U.S. against gay marriage.
In addition to his day jobs, Mr. Lloyd has been an active volunteer in the pro-life movement. He is on the Board of Directors of the Front Royal Pregnancy Center, an organization that provides "counseling" related to unwanted pregnancies. He is also a founder of Witness Works, which aims to build a "culture of life." In addition, he contributes to various pro-life publications, including Human Life International ("Contraception: The root of the Culture of Death") and Veritatis Splendor, where he writes, "The Supreme Court, when it claimed to recognize for women the 'right' to abortion on demand, simultaneously stripped the fathers of these children of their right to be parents, and other associated rights" and "LifeSiteNews provides this nice criticism exposing the logical bankruptcy of [Maryland] Governor O'Malley's support for so-called ‘gay marriage.’" In another article, Mr. Lloyd references the “radical secularists” who opposed the display of a cross on government land. He also has a piece in the National Catholic Register, where he bemoans the high failure rate of contraception and opposes taxpayer-funding for birth control. Mr. Lloyd writes, "I suggest that the American people make a deal with women: So long as you are using the condom, pill or patch I [the taxpayer] am providing with my money, you are going to promise not to have an abortion if the contraception fails, which it often does. You will put the baby up for adoption if you don’t want him or her."
So what we have in Mr. Lloyd is a man who has devoted himself to the pro-life cause, who seems to oppose "so-called" gay marriage and "radical secularists," and who has worked to help Christian and other minority-religion refugees (as opposed to Muslim refugees) in the Middle East. Whether any of this is relevant to his new position as Director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement, I do not know. But I can't help but feel concerned that Mr. Lloyd's narrow focus on "Christian issues" leaves some doubt about his commitment to the wide and diverse group of refugees and resettlement agencies he is now expected to serve.
More troubling than Mr. Lloyd's experience, though, is his lack of experience. It seems he graduated from law school in 2007, and then worked for most of his career on pro-life issues. He formed the Legal Works Apostolate law firm in 2010 and then sometime thereafter he worked for the Knights of Columbus on Christian refugee issues (as best as I can tell, Mr. Lloyd was working on contraception issues with the KoC by early 2012). Indeed, Mr. Lloyd's sparse government profile provides no dates, so it is unclear how much experience he actually has. And with regards to his time at KoC, we're told only that he "served as an attorney in the Public Policy office." It's not even clear that his primary duties at KoC involved refugees.
All this begs the question, how is Mr. Lloyd qualified to direct the Office of Refugee Resettlement? What experience has he actually had with refugees? Or with running a large organization that has an annual budget in excess of $1.5 billion (though presumably the budget will be cut significantly under President Trump)?
Also, in a properly-functioning democracy, one would hope that appointed government experts would have the knowledge and the courage to speak truth to power. Does Mr. Lloyd have the breadth and depth of experience necessary to advocate for refugees? Will he stand up to Trump Administration officials who falsely characterize refugees as terrorists and criminals? Will he be able (and willing) to stand up for Muslim refugees, and dispute the many false stories vilifying them? And what about LGBT refugees? Given his history opposing gay rights, will he treat LGBT refugees with the respect and compassion that they need and deserve?
Perhaps I am too skeptical of Mr. Lloyd. He clearly has demonstrated compassion for certain vulnerable populations, and that compassion may very well extend beyond his prior areas of interest. His challenge will be to expand that circle of compassion to include people who he has not previously served. Christian teaching commands "love your enemy." And Proverbs states, "If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink." And of course, the Torah reminds us again and again to welcome the stranger. If Mr. Lloyd takes these admonitions seriously, he may well prove my skepticism wrong. I certainly hope so.
Originally posted on the Asylumist: www.Asylumist.com.
Updated 04-06-2017 at 02:28 PM by JDzubow
By: Bruce Buchanan, Sebelist Buchanan Law
The Office of Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO) issued an interesting decision involving “document abuse” which was recently renamed “unfair documentary practices” in the new regulations. U.S. v. Mar-Jac Poultry, Inc., 12 OCAHO no. 1298 (March 2017). It was a split decision with the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) for OCAHO finding Mar-Jac Poultry committed many document abuse violations while other allegations were not document abuse.
The case started with a charge filed by Edwin Morales, a TPS recipient, with the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practice (OSC) alleging document abuse. Thereafter, OSC informed Mar-Jac that it was expanding its investigation to include “a possible pattern or practice of document abuse against non-U.S. citizens.”
Based on its investigation, the OSC filed a complaint with OCAHO alleging in Count I – Mar-Jac committed document abuse against Morales and “other similarly situated persons” and Count II – Mar-Jac engaged in a “pattern or practice of discrimination in the hiring and Employment Eligibility Verification Process.”
In its Motion for Summary Judgment, Mar-Jac argued the statute only prohibits document abuse as it relates to protected individuals - U.S. citizens (USCs), recent lawful permanent residents (LPRs), refugees and asylees. Since Morales was a TPS recipient with an Employment Authorization card (EAD), Mar-Jac argued he was not protected regarding the document abuse allegations. The ALJ determined that “claims of document abuse with an intent or purpose of discriminating against an individual based on citizenship status is limited to claims against statutorily-defined protected individuals as defined in 8 U.S.C. § 1324b(a)(6).” Since Morales was on TPS, the ALJ agreed with Mar-Jac’s defense that Morales was not a protected individual.
Concerning Count II – whether Mar-Jac engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination, Mar-Jac conceded its HR employees required potential applicants to present a photo ID and a Social Security card in order to obtain an employment application. Without such, Mar-Jac did not provide them with an application.
Also, if a person checked a box on Section 1 of the I-9 form as a LPR or authorized to work and presented Lists B and C documents, such as a driver’s license and Social Security card, respectively, the Mar-Jac HR employee would request the LPR card or EAD. Mar-Jac’s witnesses stated this request was made to make sure the card was valid and they believed E-Verify required non-USCs to present their LPR card or EAD. The witnesses acknowledged they were mistaken in their beliefs. Mar-Jac conceded USCs were not requested to present a particular document.
Mar-Jac argued it had a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason, to verify the correct box was marked in Section 1, when its HR employees asked non-USCs to see their List A document – LPR card or EAD. Mar-Jac asserted it followed this practice in order to have Sections 1 and 2 accurately completed and to avoid non-compliance with the completion of the I-9 form, which could cause civil and criminal liability. Mar-Jac also argued it required non-USCs to present a List A document because of a mistaken belief that E-Verify required it; thus, it had no discriminatory intent. Furthermore, Mar-Jac asserted requests related to E-Verify are not covered by 8 U.S.C. § 1324b; thus, no violations should be found.
To establish a case of document abuse, the decision stated a complainant must show (1) “that, in connection with the employment verification process required by 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(b), an employer has requested from the employee more or different documents than those required or has rejected otherwise acceptable valid documents and (2) that either of these actions was undertaken for the purpose or with the intent of discriminating against the employee on account of the employee’s national origin or citizenship status.”
One of the issues in the case was the requisite intent required to prove the violations. The OSC asserted U.S. v. Life Generations, a 2014 OCAHO decision, stated an intent to discriminate means that a person “would have acted differently but for the protected characteristic.” Mar-Jac argued it had no intent to discriminate because a significant portion of its workforce were non-USCs. Furthermore, their actions were merely designed to “assist the applicant in satisfying the requirements of the Form I-9.” The ALJ stated discriminatory intent does not require “malice, ill will, or a malevolent nature.” Thus, Mar-Jac’s arguments were without merit.
The ALJ concluded the testimony of Mar-Jac’s HR employees established direct evidence of discriminatory intent – the requests to see a DHS-issued document, LPR card or EAD, was motivated by the individual’s LPR or work-authorized status. Thus, the ALJ found the company “engaged in prohibited documentary practices by virtue of both specifying the kind of document that a new hire had to present, and requesting an additional document when a new hire sufficiently presented Lists B and C documents. Moreover, Mar-Jac’s documentary practices were carried out for the purposes of satisfying employment verification requirements of 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(b).”
As for Mar-Jac’s remaining defense that it completed Section 1 as the preparer/translator and thus it needed to verify the information listed to avoid civil and criminal liability, the ALJ stated, “Although the preparer/translator attestation in Section 1 requires an attestation that the information contained therein is true and correct to the best of the preparer/translator’s knowledge, that standard does not require absolute metaphysical certainty – or even actual knowledge – regarding the information from the preparer/translator and in no way requires an employer to ask to see a document to verify the information.”
Therefore, the OCAHO ALJ found Mar-Jac committed the violations alleged in Count II. A determination on the civil penalties and back pay were left for a later time. Furthermore, Mar-Jac has the right to appeal the ALJ’s decision to the Chief Judge of OCAHO.
This decision shows employees can be mistaken on the proper manner to complete the I-9 form. Therefore, it is crucial that employers obtain regular training from immigration counsel on immigration compliance issues.
WASHINGTON – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers arrested 82 individuals from 26 different countries during a five-day operation focused in Virginia and the District of Columbia that ran from March 26 to 30.
Of the 82 individuals arrested, 68 had previous criminal convictions for crimes like armed robbery, larceny and drug distribution. Of the remaining 14, two had ties to the MS-13 street gang; two had outstanding final orders of removal; three had overstayed their visas; one was wanted by a foreign law enforcement entity; one was a verified human rights violator and two had pending local charges.
The remainder had unlawfully entered the United States in violation of U.S. immigration laws.
On March 26, ERO officers arrested a 50-year-old citizen and national of Somalia in Falls Church, Virginia. He was identified as a second lieutenant in command of the Somalian National Security Service, an organization known for human rights abuses, rape, torture and extrajudicial killings. He also has a felony drug conviction.On March 26, ERO officers arrested a 40-year-old citizen and national of Trinidad and Tobago in Norfolk, Virginia. He has felony drug distribution and firearm possession convictions.On March 28, ERO officers arrested a 45-year-old citizen and national of the Dominican Republic in Chesterfield, Virginia. He has felony convictions for sale of a cocaine and attempted robbery.On March 29, ERO officers arrested a 22-year-old citizen and national of Honduras in Fairfax, Virginia. He has felony convictions for stolen goods and grand larceny.On March 29, ERO officers arrested a 34-year-old citizen and national of El Salvador in Chesterfield for being a documented MS-13 gang member who was previously removed from the United States in 2006.On March 30, ERO officers arrested a 57-year-old citizen and national of Honduras in Richmond, Virginia. She has felony convictions for grand larceny and inflicting corporal injury to spouse.
“ICE conducts targeted immigration enforcement operations focused on criminal aliens,” said ERO Washington Field Office Director Yvonne Evans. “This week’s operation successfully removed immigration violators with a variety of criminal convictions ranging from driving under the influence to grand larceny from our communities.”
The arrestees were citizens and/or nationals of several different countries across the globe, including Algeria, Bolivia, China, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Honduras, Iran, Jamaica, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Peru, Philippines, Somalia, South Korea, Sudan, Trinidad, Vietnam and Sierra Leone.
Arrests took place across Virginia, with two taking place in the District and one in Maryland.
Arrested individuals who have outstanding orders of deportation, or who returned to the United States illegally after being deported, are subject to immediate removal from the country. The remaining individuals are in ICE custody awaiting a hearing before an immigration judge, or pending travel arrangements for removal in the near future.
by Chris Musillo
The USCIS has issued a Policy Memorandum that will likely lead to denial of Computer-related positions where the employer uses a Level 1 OES wage. Accordingly, MU Law recommends that all clients use at least Level Two OES wages, or use alternative wage surveys. The new Policy Memorandum takes immediate effect and will be used for all H-1B petitions: H-1B cap, H-1B extensions, H-1B transfers, and H-1B amendments.
The March 31, 2017 Policy Memorandum rescinds a seventeen-year-old December 22, 2000 Policy Memorandum, issued by Nebraska Service Center then-Director Terry Way. There is little doubt that the new Policy Memorandum is a direct result of immigration restrictionists in the USCIS who feel emboldened by the new Trump presidency. It remains to be seen how restrictive USCIS officers will be as they interpret forthcoming computer H-1B petitions.
At virtually the same time, USCIS also has issued additional measures aimed at perceived abuses in the H-1B program. The April 3, 2017 press release says that these site visits will focus on:
Cases where USCIS cannot validate the employer’s basic business information through commercially available data;H-1B-dependent employers (those who have a high ratio of H-1B workers as compared to U.S. workers, as defined by statute); and Employers petitioning for H-1B workers who work off-site at another company or organization’s location.
Please read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com and www.ilw.com. You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
Updated 04-08-2017 at 09:16 AM by CMusillo
Seth Stodder, a senior law enforcement official ln both the Bush and Obama administrations whose whose most recent position was assistant secretary of Homeland Security for Border, Immigration and Trade Policy, writes in POLITICO on March 31 that he was opposed to the idea of Sanctuary Cities while he was a government official, but he has now changed his mind.
The reason, he explains, is that in the previous two administrations, federal immigration enforcement activities were (at laast in theory, one has to add) focused on deporting dangerous criminals. Therefore, Stodder points out in his piece, any lack of cooperation by local police officials in providing information about such individuals or turning them over to the federal government for deportation made those localities more dangerous places and directly impeded efforts to reduce violent crime.
However, Stodder writes that he has now changed his mind about Sanctuary Cities because the Trump administration's announced deportation policy no longer focuses only on on violent criminals who threaten the safety of their communities, but are directed againtt entire immigrant communities within these cities or states themselves.
In other words, what originally started out as a crime fighting measure under the two previous presidents has now morphed into mass deportation, something that cities and states have a legitimate interest in protecting members of their immigrant communities who are not violent or dangerous crimininals against.
But the transformation of fighting against crime into mass expulsion of up to 11 million unauthorized immigrants of every variety is not the only danger in the Trump administration's attacks against Sanctuary Cities, as most recently evidenced by A.G. Sessions' threat to cut off their federal funding because of their refusal to share information about immigration status with federal immigration authorities under INA Section 1373.
The most fundamental rights of American citizens are also at risk from this escalation. These include the rights to free speech, free association, and even marriage rights, all of which are in danger under INA Section 274, which makes it a federal felony to "harbor" or even "assist" an unauthorized immigrant in remaining in the United States.
Already, in some quarters, there have been dark calls to prosecute mayors of Sanctuary Cities under this broad, draconian, but up to now infrequently used statute.
Could millions of American citizens be sent to prison one day soon for providing advocacy, advice, legal or medical assistance, or even just failing to report any immigrant whose papers may not be in order to ICE for deportation?
Could America turn into a country governed by the spirit, (though of course not the letter) of Germany's infamous 1936 Nuremberg laws against the Jews?
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants obtain work visas and green cards for more than 35 years. Roger's email address is email@example.com
Updated 04-09-2017 at 04:37 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs