AUGUST 28, 2012
While President Obama’s new “deferred action” plan to spare nearly 1 million young illegal immigrants from deportation has created an uproar, a little-known policy has for decades granted permanent U.S. residency to the same demographic.
It hasn’t created a brouhaha because its been kept quiet by administrations—both Democratic and Republican— over the last 20 years. The special U.S. government visa program has granted amnesty to thousands of illegal immigrants in foster care, according to a national newswire story. Since 1997 more than 10,000 young illegal aliens have quietly become permanent legal residents.
It happens under a special immigrant juvenile status program known as SL6, a code for special immigrant juvenile status. Under the policy, dependents of the state who wind up in foster care become legal residents of the United States. In some cases their illegal immigrant parents get deported or arrested for criminal acts. Unlike the amnesty recently enacted by the president, the SL6 policy cannot be overturned.
Most Americans probably had no idea that this provision even existed. After all, there were no politically-motivated White House announcements, praise from the powerful open borders movement or outrage among those who favor securing the nation’s borders. This helps illustrate how, on most occasions, the public receives only information that the government approves for dissemination.
That’s what occurred when the Obama Administration announced, with great fanfare, its plan to spare nearly 1 million so-called “dreamers” from deportation. Under the deferred action process, made public in mid-June, “young people brought to the United States through no fault of their own as children” will have a chance at U.S. citizenship. This is a line that is often used to justify giving illegal aliens taxpayer-funded benefits such as discounted tuition at public colleges.
Shortly after Obama announced the amnesty policy, federal immigration officers complained that they’ve been ordered to release illegal immigrants arrested for violent crimes as long as they claim to be “dreamers” who came to the U.S. as children and are being allowed to remain in the country under the measure. The astounding directive was made public by a pair of officials who work for separate Homeland Security front-line agencies; Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Border Patrol.
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