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Federal Advocacy

Comments on the Department of Health and Human Services' DACA/Lawfully Present Amendment

On October 23, 2012, CLINIC and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops submitted comments to the Department of Health and Human Services in response to the Department’s amendment of the definition of the term “lawfully present.”  The amendment will prevent those granted deferred action under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program from accessing affordable health insurance coverage options.  Excluding DACA recipients from this program is inequitable and undercuts the spirit of the Administration’s DACA policy.

Support for Integration Grant Funding

CLINIC and other organizations that help permanent residents naturalize and that promote the integration of newcomers sent the attached letter to Representative Nancy Pelosi, urging her to support appropriations funding for the U.S. Citizenship and Integration Grants Program.  Since the program began in October 2009, USCIS’s Program has helped more than 38,000 permanent residents in 30 states and the District of Columbia prepare for citizenship. Twenty-six percent of the 2012 grantees are CLINIC affiliates. 

Support for the Help Separated Families Act of 2012

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) signed onto this letter July 23, 2012 urging members of Congress to support the Help Separated Families Act, legislation introduced by Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA-34). The bill aims to improve the likelihood that children placed in the child welfare system as a result of immigration enforcement actions against their parents can ultimately reunify with their parents.

Comments on Provisional Unlawful Presence Waivers of Inadmissibility for Certain Immediate Relatives

On January 9, 2012, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced its intention to change its current process for filing and adjudicating certain applications for waivers of inadmissibility filed in connection with an immediate relative immigrant petition.  On April 2, 2012, the agency issued proposed regulations to allow certain applicants to apply for and receive a provisional unlawful presence waiver prior to departing the U.S.

Comments Regarding Proposed Changes to Regulations Governing Recognition and Accreditation

The Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC) submitted these comments on March 30, 2012 in response to the Executive Office for Immigration Review’s (EOIR) proposal to amend the regulations governing the recognition of organizations and accreditation of representatives who appear before EOIR.

Religious Worker Visa Program Sign On Letter

CLINIC and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops joined other faith-based organizations in asking Congress to permanently extend the Religious Worker Visa Program.  See the letter here.

Advocates Support Expansion of the Executive Office for Immigration Review’s (EOIR) Legal Orientation Program (LOP)

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, along with other faith-based, human rights, immigrant advocacy, and legal service organizations expressed thir support for expanding the Legal Orientation Program (LOP), a program within the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). Since its launch in 2003, LOP has generated bipartisan support because of its proven track record in reducing court processing times and making the detention and immigration court process more efficient.

Comments on Public Meetings: Proposed Changes to Regulations Governing Recognition and Accreditation [EOIR Docket No. 176]

The Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC) submits these comments in response to the request for public comment by the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) in advance of its two public meetings on the agency's proposal to amend the regulations governing the recognition of organizations and accreditation of representatives who appear before EOIR.

Open Letter in Response to the Closing of the Berks County Family Shelter Care Center and Solicitation of New Family Detention Beds

"We call on the administration to prioritize release of immigrant families in all cases. We
urge the administration to assign social workers to manage familiesʼ cases rather than
placing them in detention. For families without housing, the administration should
partner with non-profit shelter or child welfare organizations experienced in supporting
asylum-seeking and immigrant families to resolve any issues preventing the direct
release of families. Social workers with proven track records providing family and child

Comments on Special Immigrant Juvenile Regulations

The undersigned members of the ICLN and other interested parties are writing in response to the regulations proposed by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) on September 6,
2011, regarding Special Immigrant Juvenile Petitions. While we applaud the proposed
regulations’ provisions reflecting the statutory language updated by the William Wilberforce
Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, we have significant concerns about
much of the proposed regulatory language, as well as the commentary accompanying the

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