News in Brief: TPS for Sudan Ending November 2018; TPS for South Sudan Extended; Apply for Work Authorization and Social Security Number at the Same Time; Immigration Surge at Border Receives Mixed Results; ICE Plans New 1,000-Bed Facility in South Texas “Detention Alley;” Largest Civil Settle in Employer Sanctions Case
TPS for Sudan ending November 2018: DHS has determined that conditions in Sudan no longer support its designation for temporary protected status (TPS). The decision will affect over 1,000 Sudanese nationals living in the United States under a grant of TPS. In announcing the termination of TPS for Sudan, DHS extended the program for one additional year. TPS status for Sudanese nationals will thus officially terminate on November 2, 2018. Those who need to renew their work cards should do so immediately in order to take advantage of their TPS benefits all the way through to the November 2018 deadline.
TPS for South Sudan Extended: While country conditions in Sudan no longer support a TPS designation, conditions in South Sudan have prompted the DHS to the extend TPS benefits for those foreign nationals for an additional 18 months, through May 2, 2019. Acting DHS Secretary Elaine Duke stated that the country is “engulfed in an ongoing civil war marked by brutal violence against civilians, egregious human rights violations and abuses, and a humanitarian disaster on a devastating scale across the country.”
Apply for Work Authorization and a Social Security Number at the Same Time: USCIS and the Social Security Administration have created an information-sharing partnership that will streamline getting an SSN. Instead of having to wait for USCIS to grant their application before applying for a Social Security number, foreign nationals can now apply for work authorization and a Social Security number at the same time, using the new version of Form I-765.
Immigration Judge Surge at Border Receives Mixed Results: After Executive Order 13767 (Border Security) was issued earlier this year, Attorney General Jeff Sessions relocated more than 100 immigration judges down to the Southern Border. The Justice Department stated that the surge resulted in about 2,700 more case completions. Despite this numerical success, however, the court backlog looms even larger due to interior enforcement efforts. More importantly, serious due process concerns have been raised regarding the accelerated immigration hearings taking place on the border.
ICE Plans New 1,000-Bed Facility in South Texas “Detention Alley”: ICE is planning to increase the number of its detention facilities to include a new privately run 1,000 bed facility to house men and women in South Texas. Proposals are being accepted for the new location, which would add to the seven facilities currently located along the I-35 corridor between Laredo and San Antonio. Sharp increases in the number of individuals detained due to ICE raids have put a strain on the existing number of facilities. The new arrests have added to the existing 632,261 cases pending nationwide.
Largest Civil Settlement in Employer Sanctions Case: ICE announced that Asplundh Tree Experts, one of the largest privately held U.S. companies, pleaded guilty to unlawfully employing individuals and was sentenced to an $80 million criminal forfeiture judgment and $15 million in civil payment, the largest immigration payment ever levied.