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Judge Jeffrey S. White of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled on Thursday that President Trump overstepped his authority in suspending new work visas, including the H-1B visa, due to the coronavirus pandemic. Trump issued an order in June that was set to be in place until Dec. 31, which applied to thousands of companies hoping to hire foreign workers, such as tech workers or seasonal employees. Judge White found the president does not have the power to set policy on nonimmigrant foreigners. Trump argued it would protect Americans from foreign competition as they faced record unemployment. The New York Times
In other national immigration news…
CBP Snipers Watched Over George Floyd’s Funeral
Members of Customs and Border Protection’s militarized tactical unit BORTAC watched over George Floyd’s burial outside Houston in June and were prepared to use deadly force as they braced for “rioting and looting.” At least six sniper teams were in place on rooftops and authorized to open fire if the situation spiraled out of control, according to documents obtained by VICE. The documented granted use of deadly force to all agents “anytime,” with BORTAC “geared up ready to deploy” in response to “verbal aggressive language” by protesters.” Vice
Trump Admin. No Longer Holding Children in Hotels, Rapid Deportations Continue
The Trump administration has quietly stopped holding migrant children in hotels, but it still argues children can be rapidly deported. Immigration and Customs Enforcement came under fire for holding children in hotels along the border instead of placing them in shelters when they arrived at the border alone. ICE has reportedly not held children in border-area hotels since Sep. 11, something ICE official Melissa Harper repeated in court. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention allowed rapid deportations during the pandemic, and CBP is continuing to enforce it. CBS
Record Number of Deaths in ICE Detention in FY20
More immigrants died in ICE detention in fiscal year 2020, which ended on Wednesday, than did in 2018 and 2019 combined. In the last fiscal year, 21 people died in ICE custody, the highest number of deaths since 2005. Immigrant advocates argue the deaths are an indication of the deteriorating conditions in ICE detention, while ICE maintains deaths are still rare. More than a third of the deaths were people who tested positive for COVID-19. The number of people in ICE detention decreased significantly during the pandemic, but still, more than 6,100 detainees have tested positive for COVID-19. CNN
Honduran Migrants Make Their Way to U.S. Border
About 2,000 Honduran migrants hoping to reach the U.S. despite the pandemic entered Guatemala on foot Thursday morning. The group is set to cross recently reopened borders that were shuttered due to COVID-19. Guatemala’s president said he would detain and deport the migrants, saying they represented a health threat. Still, the group outnumbered Guatemalan police and pushed past them to enter the country. One migrant died trying to board a flatbed truck. Associated Press
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