On Wednesday, July 29, 2020, the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship will hold a hearing on “Oversight of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services” where, among other witnesses, AILA’s Director of Government Relations Sharvari (Shev) Dalal-Dheini will testify as to the reasons USCIS finds itself in a financial crisis, endangering 13,000 jobs and the lives and livelihoods of countless immigrants who would be impacted by halts to service.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is the agency charged with administering immigration benefits, adjudicating immigration applications and petitions, reuniting families, and ensuring U.S. businesses have the global talent needed to drive innovation and flourish. USCIS is not, according to its statutory mission, an enforcement agency. However, shifts made by the Trump administration have led to just that, making it more of a vetting agency. And now, USCIS has asserted that furloughs of more than 13,000 USCIS employees may be necessary due to a budget crisis. If furloughs occur, the U.S. immigration system will come to a grinding halt causing tremendous harm to the customers of the agency, American families and businesses, and our nation’s economy and welfare.