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On Wednesday, the Biden administration issued a new guidance ordering Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to avoid detaining and deporting immigrants who were victims of crimes, blocking extraordinary circumstances. In a memo, Interim ICE Director Tae Johnson said to agents that the change could encourage immigrants residing in the U.S. without status to contact law enforcement when needed and assist investigations. The new guidance advises agents to use caution with cases involving immigrants who were granted or are applying for an immigration benefit created to protect victims of crimes, such as trafficking and domestic abuse. ICE agents would need to request permission from top agency officials to arrest victims or witnesses of crimes who are included in ongoing investigations or prosecutions. CBS News
In other federal immigration news…
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Mayorkas Says U.S. Dealing With “Unprecedented” Number of Migrants
Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas said the Biden administration is dealing with a “serious challenge” at the southern border. He also said the U.S. encountered an “unprecedented” number of migrants crossing the border. At a news conference in Brownsville, Texas, Mayorkas underscored the sharp incline of migrants arriving at the border. U.S. Customs and Border Protection apprehended 212,672 individuals in July, with 95,788 of them being expelled. “We are facing a serious challenge at our border, and the challenge is of course made more acute and more difficult because of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mayorkas said. CNN
Biden Trying To Find Right Message for Border
Critics say the Biden administration has struggled to find the right message to send for how he’s dealing with the influx of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico. The administration has both told migrants not to come north, but also assured migrants they’d be treated fairly if they do. “Overall, I’d say the administration has really struggled to explain exactly what’s happening at the border, and really put some of the numbers into perspective for the American people,” said Danilo Zak, a senior policy and advocacy associate with the National Immigration Forum, an immigration reform advocacy group. Those who oppose with Biden’s immigration policies have been quick to paint the situation along the border as a “catastrophe” that will increase crime and drugs smuggling. VOA News
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