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Early Arrival: New York’s Foreign-Born Population Growth Slows

Friday's Edition of Early Arrival: Debt Collection Agencies Fail to Provide Translation Services — Cameroonian Man Dies in ICE Custody —  Trump Denies Alligator Reports

New York has seen a substantial decline in its foreign-born population, according to data released by the American Community Survey. Five major cities – New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, and Houston – house 36 percent of the U.S.’s total foreign-born population. Yet these areas only received 20 percent of the total number of foreign-born people moving to the U.S. between 2017 and 2018. Smaller cities in the south and midwest tended to receive more of the population during this time frame. 

From 2010 to 2018, the New York area saw a 5 percent increase in the number of foreign-born people living there. In comparison, Jacksonville, Florida saw a growth of over 50 percent in the same timeframe. There are currently about 5.8 million foreign-born people living in the New York City area, about 30 percent of the entire population. The cities that have generally seen the sharpest increase in foreign-born residents went to President Trump in the 2016 election.

But it’s not as if those smaller cities and areas are making up for the population loss in New York. New York’s decline mirrors a nationwide trend, with the U.S. in 2017-18 seeing one of its lowest recent gain of foreign-born people since the 1970s. Yet despite this downturn, the foreign-born percentage of the total U.S. population remains the highest it’s been since 1910. The population of China- and India-born people has grown the highest nationwide. The Brookings Institute

Hello, this is Max Siegelbaum and Mazin Sidahmed with today’s edition of Early Arrival. You can email us at max.siegelbaum@documentedny.com or mazin.sidahmed@documentedny.com.

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Debt Collection Agencies Fail to Provide Translation Services

Debt collection agencies that have pledged to provide translations are not living up to their promises, according to a new report from New York City. The Department of Consumer and Worker Protection queried 32 debt collection agencies from around the country, including about their call recordings and limited-English proficiency policies. “The debt collection industry is rife with discriminatory and abusive practices,” said Susan Shin, legal director at New Economy Project, an economic justice organization. The report similarly says that “debt collectors are not taking adequate steps to ensure that limited-English proficiency consumers can understand and resolve their alleged debt.” The City

State Senator and Faith Leaders Expand Sanctuary Network in East Harlem

State Sen. Brian Benjamin (D-Harlem) says faith leaders in his East Harlem district are organizing to create a new network of sanctuary spaces for undocumented immigrants targeted by ICE. The senator is collaborating with the New Sanctuary Coalition to expand its capacity in the area. Faith leaders from the area at a press conference said they hadn’t heard of sanctuary spaces. “We are here today to state unequivocally that ICE is not welcome here,” Benjamin said. About 10 churches have joined the coalition so far. City Limits


Cameroonian Man Dies in ICE Custody

A man from Cameroon has died in federal immigration custody after undergoing treatment for a brain hemorrhage. Nebane Abienwi was being detained at the Otay Mesa Detention Center in San Diego after crossing the border without proper entry documents, according to the DHS. He was transferred to ICE custody on Sept. 19. He was brought to Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center where he was treated, and died Tuesday. Physicians said his cause of death was brain death secondary to basal ganglia hemorrhage. BuzzFeed News

DHS Seeks to Collect DNA From all Immigrant Detainees

The U.S. government plans on collecting DNA from the hundreds of thousands of people it holds in federal immigration custody, senior homeland security officials tell The New York Times. It plans on entering the results into a national criminal database. The move would add scores of new records to the FBI’s database, which is normally restricted to people who have been arrested on, charged with or convicted of a crime. Congress passed a law that authorized widespread DNA collection in 2005, but exempted immigrants. DHS officials said the exemption was outdated and they would eliminate it. The New York Times

Immigrants Caught in National Security Screening

Mehdi Ostadhassan got a mysterious phone call from the FBI in 2014 asking about a recent trip to Iran, only months after his interview with an immigration officer had been canceled without reason. Ostadhassan is an Iranian national and one of the 42,000 people caught up in a national security screening program called Controlled Application Review and Resolution Program, according to records obtained by CNN. He has been waiting since 2014 for his green card after he married his U.S. citizen wife. The ACLU is suing the government and argues CARRP is discriminatory and illegal. A judge will hear arguments in the case in March. CNN

Migrant Child Care Becomes Privatized 

The government spent a record $3.5 billion caring for migrant children over the past two years through grants and contracts to companies that run shelters. The Trump administration has also started shifting these lucrative contracts to private companies and away from religious-based nonprofits. Comprehensive Health Services, Inc. is a private company that is responsible for holding some of the smallest migrant children, holding more than 50 babies, toddlers, and teens at the facility on a recent day. In fact, in June, CHS held more than 20 percent of all migrant children in government custody. Former White House Chief of Staff and DHS Secretary John Kelly joined the board of CHS’s parent company Caliburn this spring. Associated Press/Frontline

Virginia Cop Placed on Leave for Calling ICE

A Virginia police officer was placed on leave after he detained a man at the scene of a traffic incident after reporting him to ICE. According to the Fairfax County Chief Edwin Roessler, the police officer found a warrant from ICE when performing a check on the man’s driver’s license. He alerted ICE to the driver’s whereabouts and detained the driver until ICE came and took him into custody. Roessler said the officer’s conduct violated the department’s policy, which prohibits officers from notifying ICE of an immigrant who is not being held in violation of the law. This driver was issued a summons was not arrested on a criminal charge. NBC News

Trump Denies Alligator Reports, DOJ Harshens Children’s Asylum Promises, Former USCIS Head Returns in New Role

President Trump has denied reports that he wanted to create a moat on the U.S.–Mexico border filled with alligators. A book excerpt from two New York Times reporters claimed that the president had floated those ideas, as well as adding features to his border wall like an electric current and spikes. Trump said on Twitter that the moat filled with alligators and the spikes were even too extreme for him, though he didn’t deny that he’d mentioned the idea of shooting migrants in the legs. In the Oval Office, he told reporters that he first heard those ideas when his staff asked him about the report. He mislabeled the source of the news as the Washington Post, and of course called them “fake.” 

Regardless of the sourcing issue, The Washington Post did confirm a lot of the book’s reporting in a story published Thursday. The Post also reported that the president had mentioned building a moat filled with reptiles surrounding the border and added that he suggested sending U.S. forces with bayonets to block people from crossing the U.S.–Mexico border. The latter idea reportedly came about when Trump decided to send the National Guard to the border. Politico, The Washington Post

The Justice Department is considering a policy that would make it harder for unaccompanied minors to obtain asylum in the U.S. It would impose a two-month deadline on children to apply for asylum, where previously there had been no deadline for children to apply, while adults must submit applications within one year of arriving in the U.S. Immigration judges would also be tasked with classifying individuals as minors, a determination previously made by USCIS asylum officers. BuzzFeed NewsThe former head of USCIS Francis Cissna has rejoined the Department of Homeland Security in a policy role. Cissna was unceremoniously pushed out of the agency earlier this year in a wide-ranging reshuffle at the top of the department. Administration officials described his return to BuzzFeed News as “super awkward.”BuzzFeed News

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