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Early Arrival: Queens Man Arrested by ICE at Green Card Interview

Monday June 18 edition of Documented newsletter Early Arrival: Queens Man Arrested at Green Card Interview – Breaking Down the 'Zero Tolerance' Policy Separating Families – Trump and House GOP huddle on immigration. Early Arrival is a roundup of local and national immigration news.

ICE reportedly arrested a man from Queens during an interview for his green card and he now faces deportation to his native China.

Xiu Qing You is married to a U.S. citizen and is the father of two children born in the country. The Daily News reports that You was asked to leave his green card interview halfway through, and his wife has not seen him since.

He is currently being held in a detention center in New Jersey. New York Daily News

Hungry for more immigration information? Migratory Notes is a weekly newsletter with news, resources, jobs, reading materials, and more on immigration in America. Read the latest newsletter and sign up here.

Ellis Island

Lawmakers Visit New Jersey Detention Center

Democratic lawmakers from New York and New Jersey made a visit to the Elizabeth Contract Detention Facility in Elizabeth, New Jersey, on Sunday. The delegation included Democratic Reps. Frank Pallone Jr., Albio Sires and Bill Pascrell from New Jersey, and Carolyn Maloney, Hakeem Jeffries and Adriano Espaillat from New York The Father’s Day visit coincided with several Democrats taking similar actions across the country to draw attention to the country’s controversial “zero tolerance” policy. More on that below. HuffPost

Another Cab Driver Commits Suicide

Abdul Saleh, a taxi driver in Brooklyn, committed suicide on Friday, after running out of money to lease his vehicle. He is the sixth driver to take his own life in six months, according to the New York Taxi Workers Alliance. Competition from Lyft and Uber has depressed the value of medallions and oversaturated the number of cars on the street, which NYTWA says has led to the spate of suicides. Following the suicide of Saleh, a Yemeni immigrant, Democratic Rep. Adriano Espaillat called on the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commissioner Meera Joshi to step down over her failure to resolve the issue. Uber drivers have also been hit by the oversaturation of cars and are now organizing more aggressively. ABC7, NBC4, The New York Times

Crowley Does not Support ‘Abolish ICE’

Immigration was a key issue during a debate for the Democratic primary of New York’s 14th Congressional District in Queens between Rep. Joe Crowley and challenger Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Cortez has repeatedly reiterated her call to abolish ICE. Crowley, the incumbent since 1999, mostly agreed with Cortez’s characterization of the agency but rejected the call for abolishing the agency as he said it would do little to change the situation. POLITICO

Free Pizza Deliveryman from ICE for Sake of his Young Daughters, an op-ed by Sandra Chica, the wife of Pablo Villavicencio, the man arrested by ICE at Fort Hamilton Army Base after attempting to deliver food, New York Daily News [Opinion]

ICE Fugitive who Escaped from JFK Airport is Diplomat’s son, New York Daily News

Local Leaders Hold Emergency Meeting over Specialized Admissions Test Debate, Which Many Have Called ‘Anti-Asian,’ ABC7

Special Edition: ‘Zero Tolerance’ Policy Leads to Nationwide Rebuke

It’s been six weeks since Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the “zero tolerance” policy that has led to children being separated from their parents at the border.

Since then, 1,995 minors have been separated from their parents, according to DHS data obtained by the Associated Press. The data cover April 19 to May 31 and include separations for illegal entry, immigration violations or possible criminal conduct by the adult. The Washington Post reports those numbers could double.

The policy has led to nationwide protests and condemnation from across the political spectrum. A wave of reporting over the weekend covered the fallout from the policy.

Reuniting Families: The New York Times’ Miriam Jordan examined the difficulty of reuniting parents who have been separated from their children. Once separated, migrant parents and children become separate legal cases in the government’s view, Jordan writes, and no system exists to keep them linked. A federal judge will rule on Thursday as to whether or not the government is compelled to reunify certain migrants who are separated from their children.

Tent City: A temporary shelter consisting of tents is being built in Tornillo, Texas, to house minors crossing the border. Dallas News reports that dozens of unaccompanied minors have already been placed there. Hundreds of protesters marched on the encampment on Sunday.

The Long-Term Effects: HuffPost and BuzzFeed took a look at the psychological effects of separating children from their parents. Experts told both outlets that the children are likely to suffer from long-term psychological challenges.

How We Got Here: White House Adviser Stephen Miller has been the main champion of the “zero tolerance” policy, The New York Times reports. The concept of separating children from their parents to deter migrants from crossing the border is not a new one, but previous administrations were unwilling to accept the inhumanity — and political risk — of the policy.

Trump Blames Democrats: One of the most prominent critics of the president’s family separation policy is… the president himself. “I hate the children being taken away,” Trump told reporters on Friday. He has repeatedly blamed Democrats for the policy despite his own attorney general announcing it a month ago. White House Adviser Kellyanne Conway claimed that “nobody like the policy” First Lady Melania Trump said in a statement on Sunday that she also hates to see children separated from their families, but stopped short of criticizing her husband. She called on “both sides” to agree to end the policy. And Kellyanne Conway on Meet the Press called this issue a question of “American morality,” citing her motherhood and Catholicism to denounce the policy Trump’s administration has put in place.

Confused? If you’re still confused by the “zero tolerance” policy, Vox’s Dara Lind offers the most comprehensive explanation here.

Views on family separation:

  • In a rare public comment on policy, former First Lady Laura Bush pens an op-ed in The Washington Post calling for an end to the “zero tolerance” policy. The Washington Post
  • Law professor and publisher of the Crimmigration blog, César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández, wrote in The Guardian how President Barack Obama’s policy set the stage for “zero tolerance.” The Guardian
  • In an interview with NPR, former U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Roberta Jacobson  called the separation of families “un-American.” NPR


Undocumented Immigrants Killed Following Car Chase with Border Patrol

Five undocumented immigrants were killed in a car crash in Texas after being chased by border patrol agents and a local deputy sheriff. The were 14 people in the SUV that crashed in the town of Big Wells, 50 miles from the border, according to the sheriff. ABC News

Footage of Border Patrol Attempting to Block Asylum Seekers

The Intercept obtained footage of asylum seekers being blocked from entering the U.S. In a policy that has been in use since 2016, but has ramped up in recent months, according to reports, border officials have been profiling asylum seekers at points of entry. The Intercept

Washington – Trump to huddle with Republicans on immigration

Trump will meet with House Republicans on Tuesday, POLITICO reports, to quell fears that he may not support immigration bills that are due for a vote on Thursday.

The president caused confusion on Friday when he told Fox & Friends that he would not support a bill that Republicans had put forward. He backtracked later in the day to say he would. POLITICO

Despite Republicans claiming that one of the immigration bills put forward for a vote outlaws family separation, Vox reports that that is a lie.  Vox

Washington is also bracing for a potential September shutdown over the border wall as Trump has indicated that he will not support a budget bill that does not include it. POLITICO

Corey Stewart, Virginia Senate Nominee, Evokes Trump on Racial Issues, The New York Times

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