FAQ & Resources on Trump Executive Actions on Immigration

TRAVEL WARNING: The Trump Administration has rolled out Muslim Ban 2.0, after a federal judge placed a stay on the travel ban impacting citizens and nationals of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Sudan. The new executive order was supposed to go into effect on March 16, 2017, and bans citizens and nationals of Iran, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia, and Sudan from obtaining a visa to come to the U.S., with certain exceptions. However, several federal district court judges have issued another stay on the roll-out of this visa ban.

IMMIGRATION BENEFITS PROCESSING WARNING: The United States has resumed processing applications for immigration benefits for citizens and nationals of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Sudan who are abroad and need to travel to the United States. USCIS continues to process cases for people from these countries who currently reside in the United States (Adjustment of Status, Change of Status, DACA, TPS, naturalizations and so on) and will continue to conduct interviews for everyone seeking asylum or refugee status.

Donald Trump has signed three executive orders on immigration recently, and as predicted, the sum of these orders makes immigration enforcement much harsher than previous Administrations.

Full text of the orders can be accessed below, along with summaries from various sources. For a better general understanding of executive orders, and memorandums signed by the President, see this handy cheat-sheet.

Executive Order: Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States

This Executive Order mainly empowers law enforcement agencies to pursue the removal of all undocumented immigrants (without exception), non-citizens who are security risks, non-citizens with criminal convictions, and individuals with final orders of removal. It rescinds the Priority Enforcement Program (PEP), directs Immigration and Customs Enforcement to hire 10,000 officials to enforce the order, and restores the 287(g) program that allows local law enforcement to enforce immigration laws. The order also calls for actions to be taken against sanctuary cities and jurisdictions that refuse to comply with the enforcement of these laws, but these actions remain undefined (and arguably, unconstitutional).

At the crux of it all, the Trump Administration is calling for law enforcement officials to assist with the removal of everyone who has no immigration status, particularly if they have committed crimes or have final orders of removal. It remains unclear how the priority removal of every undocumented individual coincides with deferred action and DACA program, which currently remains in place, but may be rescinded.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

Everyone without status is a priority for removal. However, we think the following people may be more at risk than others:

  • An individual who is currently in jail or prison or has a criminal conviction
  • An individual who has a stay of removal or an order of supervision. A check-in with an ICE office to renew requests for prosecutorial discretion or appearances for supervision check-ins may result in detention and removal. ICE may also target such a person at their last known address.
  • An individual who has a final removal order, including those with DACA
  • An individual whose name is in a local police gang database or who may be construed as having gang affiliations

In sanctuary jurisdictions such as California, local law enforcement is prohibited by state law (the TRUST Act), from holding undocumented immigrants at the request of federal authorities, unless they have committed “serious” or “violent” crimes. Early reports indicate that most state officials will continue to act in accordance with the spirit of the TRUST Act, and the state is looking into ways in which it can protect all non-U.S. citizens.

Executive Order: Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements

Signed on January 25, 2017, this Executive Order calls for funding of a costly border between the U.S. and Mexico; curtails the due process of asylum seekers; calls for the detention of all persons attempting to enter the United States and all persons in removal proceedings; directs the Department of Homeland Security to immediately construct detention facilities at or near the southern border; limits the use of parole; expands the use of “expedited removal” to anyone in the United States who cannot prove s/he has lived here for at least two years; and prioritizes the criminal prosecution of unlawful entry into the United States. Recent guidelines issued by DHS also directs ICE to penalize parents who bring their undocumented children to the United States, and remove individuals with pending deportation cases to Mexico pending the conclusion of their cases.

Executive Order: “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry

The Trump Administration initially banned non-U.S. citizens from the seven countries above from traveling to the United States, hundreds of travelers were detained, and many had their visa interviews cancelled abroad. Green card holders from these countries were also interrogated at ports of entry around the country, despite assurances from the Trump Administration that this ban did not apply to them. Several courts issued injunctions against the executive order, and a federal court judge in Washington state stayed the travel ban (issued a temporary order to not execute the travel ban) as of February 3, 2017. In light of this court decision, citizens and nationals from Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Syria, Sudan, Libya and Somalia with non-immigrant visas, can once again, come back to the United States as their visas are no longer revoked, while the stay is in effect. Since the Ninth Circuit upheld the stay on the Executive Order, the Trump Administration has issued a new order to replace the initial one. However, there is also a stay on the new order.

See summary below:

Resources for Impacted Individuals

These fact sheets do not constitute legal advice. UC Berkeley graduate and undergraduate students who have questions about how these executive orders affect them or their immediate family members, should reach out to the UC Berkeley Undocumented Student Program attorney at plal@ebclc.org or call 510-269-6675 and leave a message.