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The Biden administration is considering extending deportation protections to undocumented immigrants if they report an abusive employer, the Wall Street Journal reports. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas sent an internal memo to acting U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement director Tuesday morning, which included the administration’s idea for certain deportation protections. The memo detailed the Biden administration’s intentions to go after employers who hire undocumented people instead of the employees. The department can reduce the demand for illegal employment, Mayorkas reportedly wrote in the memo, by going after “unscrupulous” employers who take advantage of undocumented immigrants by paying them lower wages.” The Wall Street Journal
In other federal immigration news…
White House Halts Large-Scale Immigration Job Arrests
In the same memo, the Biden administration also ordered an end to “large-scale immigration arrests at job sites,” The Washington Post reported. In his memo, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said that the deployment of mass worksite operations was not focused on the most “pernicious” aspect of the country’s “unauthorized employment challenge: exploitative employers.” The memo states: “These highly visible operations misallocated enforcement resources while chilling, and even serving as a tool of retaliation for, worker cooperation in workplace standards investigations.” The Department of Homeland security said that this new approach will help American business. The Washington Post
Immigration Advocates Frustrated With Biden’s Reluctance
Some immigrant advocates are frustrated with the Biden administration, saying it isn’t “taking advantage of existing legal pathways for those seeking to come to the U.S.,” the Hill reports. Advocates point to the White House letting visas expire before giving them to immigrants, and the country hitting the lowest number of refugees resettled in the United States in the history of the program. “We’ve lost hundreds of thousands of visas that were meant for people to come here through the employment-based system or to join family members that, because of federal bureaucracy, were not processed in time, which is absolutely unjustifiable,” said Jorge Loweree, policy director for the American Immigration Council. The Hill