In an increasingly rare gesture of unity, the Senate and House (Senator Patrick Leahy D-VT and Representative Zoe Lofgren D-CA) jointly introduced the bicameral Refugee Protection Act earlier this month. Among its many sweeping improvements for refugees and asylees are smaller — but critical — changes to legal procedure that will help solve problems which have long plagued immigration courts.
Improving the speed and integrity of the process has become urgently necessary. The Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) faces the largest caseload in history, and is badly backlogged. Between 2010 and 2016, the caseload has more than doubled.
Affording counsel in certain circumstances, as the proposed legislation empowers the Attorney General to do, will not only increase the odds that justice will be done, but will help immigration cases move more expeditiously through the system.
Read the entire piece published here.