News Round Up In-Brief
- On October 8, eight Democratic members of the House of Representatives were arrested outside the Capitol building during a protest to support comprehensive immigration legislation.
- Sonia Nazario, author of Enrique’s Journey: The Story of a Boy’s Dangerous Odyssey to Reunite with his Mother, writes that U.S. immigration policy has been at the root of much family separation, both by driving family members to immigrate separately and by deliberately deporting parents without their children.
- ThinkProgress posted a “simple guide to the Affordable Care Act” for non-citizens with varying levels of access to ACA-provided care.
- A “family glitch” in the 2010 Affordable Care Act threatens to cost families thousands of dollars for health insurance, since the “affordable” mandate applies only to the employee whose household income is under consideration – not to his or her family. Additionally, undocumented immigrant parents may not know that there are “protections” built into the ACA that make it safe for mixed-status families to apply for health care for their legal resident and U.S. citizen children.
- Governor Jerry Brown (D) of California broke with his own party to veto a bill to extend jury duty to non-citizens.
- On October 5, thousands rallied across 40 states in support of a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. In light of Congress’ stalemate on immigration reform, the New York Times editorial board implored states to follow California by passing piecemeal reforms to ease the burden of “illegality” for undocumented residents. House Democrats proposed their own comprehensive reform bill with an added border security component, but this bill is expected to fail against House Republicans who reject a citizenship path. The effect of the shutdown on reform efforts remains to be seen.
- Some midwestern cities aim to appear welcoming to immigrants, in the hope of gaining new residents and stimulating their economies.
- The high court of the Dominican Republic ruled to revoke the citizenship of anyone born to non-citizens after 1929, a move that primarily affects citizens of Haitian descent.
- On October 3, a boat carrying over 500 hopeful migrants caught fire and sank off the coast of the Italian island of Lampedusa, killing at least 339 people and mobilizing Italian search operations. On October 11, another maritime wreck involving migrants killed at least 27 people. According to a New York Times editorial, the incident indicates the need for changes to European Union refugee policy. The incident affected Germany’s search for a new government, where Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party has called for changes to Europe’s asylum seeker policies.
- In light of the Lampedusa incident, UK immigration scholar Nando Sigona writes that the EU should redirect its attention to the causes of refugee migration. Sigona argues in a second article that Italian and EU policies prioritizing refusal, detention, and removal of refugees only increase suffering, even as international law obligates the EU to provide safe and legal routes for asylum seekers.
- A senior European Union official called for more patrols of Mediterranean Sea routes into Europe in order to prevent migrant deaths. Spain has increased boat patrols off its borders over the last several years, which reduced its unauthorized border crossings, while those to Italy skyrocketed.
- The blog Le Monde Diplomatique has mapped Europe’s attempts to “secure its borders” against unauthorized immigration.
- In Russia, the arrest of an Azerbaijani man on a homicide charge set off an anti-immigrant rampage of violence by Russian nationalists, who were caught on camera abusing migrant workers at a market in Moscow.
- Two pregnant woman, both with high-risk pregnancies, are being held in hot weather in the Australian detention facility on the island of Nauru, where the main hospital was partially destroyed by a fire in August (although the maternity ward remains intact). The government continues to remove pregnant detainees from mainland to offshore detention facilities, with limited media coverage.
- The government of Papua New Guinea pushed back against the new Australian government’s insistence that migrants be transferred from Australia’s Christmas Island to PNG’s Manus Island within 48 hours, a time limit that PNG says would violate its own immigration laws by not giving time for adequate health checks.
- Norway’s conservatives formed a coalition that puts the anti-immigrant Progress Party in government for the first time in its 40-year existence, with a platform that promises to make it easier to deport asylum seekers.
- The UK introduced a hardline immigration bill that bars undocumented immigrants from opening bank accounts, requires immigration checks in private housing applications and health care, and makes it harder to appeal deportation orders.
- France deported a 15-year-old Kosovar girl of the Roma minority, leading migrant advocates to condemn ill treatment of children and the racial politics of the case. The actions of French police, who stopped a school bus to remove and detain her, were widely questioned.
- Brolan, Claire E., Stéphanie Dagron, Lisa Forman, Rachel Hammonds, Laila Abdul Latif, and Attiya Waris. 2013. Health rights in the post-2015 development agenda: including non-nationals. Bulletin of the World Health Organization (2013) 91: 719-719A.
Prepared by Rachel Stonecipher
Categories: News Round Up In-Brief