Citing the coronavirus epidemic, judges and ICE attorneys demanded the closure of immigration courts

Citing the coronavirus epidemic, judges and ICE attorneys demanded the closure of immigration courts

To temporarily close all countries despite growing demand for the judiciary Immigration court Most courts are open because of the coronary virus epidemic. Some courts have reopened after the department confirmed there were people tested positive for the virus.

Janine Fried, a government lawyer representing a union of attorneys for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), called the decision “openly offensive” to most immigration courts.

“People can now move on to positive popping up,” said Fried, vice president of the American Federation of Federal Employees, so you cannot claim credible denial. Now it is consciously neglecting human life and safety, ”Fred Local 511Told CBS News.

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Twelve immigration courts were closed on Tuesday. Two of them – Verrick Street in New York and Elizabeth in New Jersey – were closed because attendees received positive results. Diagnosis of COVID-19, According to the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR), A branch of the judiciary that oversees immigration tribunals. However, on Wednesday morning, both facilities were open for business again.

The decision to reopen the location of Verrick Street has been a sudden draw on Facebook. One commenter EOIR’s Facebook page “Instead of taking the CDC’s recommended natural measures, the policy of the EOIR is to wait until the staff is infected with the virus and then shut down for a day. It’s a shame.”

Federal immigration judges are expressing concern.

“I have never seen such laziness and innocence in any agency leadership,” said Judge Ashley Tabadore, president of the National Association of Immigration Judges (NAIC), Another union, told CBS News.

Hearing on immigrants not detained by ICE adjourned until April 5 The judiciary also adjourned the hearing for asylum seekers by April 22 Back to mexico Under the Immigrant Protection Protocols program. However, the hearing for the detained migrants and asylum seekers is still under way and some support staff is needed to get to the office.

On Wednesday, the Justice Department opened six immigration courts that were closed, with locations hit hard by the Cornwallis epidemic. New York And in California, for the “limited purpose” of receiving files filed by lawyers

“All the immigration courts in the country, failing to stop both non-detention and incarceration, will now exacerbate a century-long public health crisis and cause even more harm,” said Tabadore.

Although the EOIR constantly discourages cases involving detainees, except in extremely precarious circumstances, sources say they occur regularly. If the immigration court is closed, non-violent prisoners may be released on parole or imprisoned for a long time. In the latter case, immigrants are likely to file a deferred hearing for habeas corpus, or unlawful detention. To avoid that, the immigration law groups have called on the DOJ to close the court and advise on priority issues by phone and electronically. They say, something that doesn’t happen now.

In a letter to the EOIR on Monday, the association’s deportation defense attorneys wrote: “Requests for telephonic hearings are not being approved immediately, or they are simply not being prosecuted despite timely requests.”

Most, if not all, blocked-hearings are already being rescheduled. These types of cases usually involve being released from asylum or deportation. Sources say that the immigration court backlog currently has more than 1.5 million cases, and the suspension hearing is often adjourned for several years. As a result, all non-detained immigrants with scheduled hearings will see delays in the removal process.

There are also concerns that people will have to disobey an order issued by their local or state government, leaving the court open. One person posted on Facebook wrote, “I’m a lawyer in Denver, Prince Bono 8. I have a filing for April, I need to violate my city’s shelter in order for the filing to take effect so that I have to make the necessary copies and then mail the documents again.” To do or to provide them personally I am in the R = high (sic) risk category and you are at my Color copies in court and the health of employees is endangered. ”

Earlier this week, the NAIJ and the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers (IFPTE) The next incentive law sent a letter to Congress to resolve “congressional feeling” that 688 immigration courts were calling for a complete and temporary closure.

“In the face of insufficient national testing,” the letter read, “It is illegal to do anything other than close our court until adequate testing is conducted.”

In FY2012, the EOIR closed More than 277,6 cases, The second highest number of completions in the history of the agency.

The Justice Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment on CBS News.

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