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Action Alert: June 20, 2018
Call Your Member of Congress TODAY to Stop Family Separation and Protect Immigrant Survivors


1. Find your Congressional Representative here and Tell Them to Oppose Immigration Bills that Harm Survivors of Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault
The House of Representatives is expected to vote on two harmful immigration bills on Thursday, Please urge your Representatives to VOTE NO on: 

Both of these bills attempt to address the Administration’s termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) for several hundred thousand young people, but unnecessarily restrict access to the program, make drastic reductions to legal immigration, and eliminate protections for vulnerable children, many of whom are fleeing sexual and domestic violence or human trafficking, created by the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA). Also, neither of these bills will stop the Administration’s inhumane and shameful family separation policy. 

Call your Representative today!
Find your Representative to Congress here, using your zip code and click here for contact information.  

  • My name is _______and I’m calling from [City and State]  I’m calling today to tell [Representative________ ] to vote NO on both the Goodlatte bill (HR 4760)  and the Paul Ryan’s Border Security And Immigration Reform Act (HR 6136). These bills will harm domestic violence and sexual assault survivors, fail to adequately protect Dreamers, limit protections existing for abused and neglected children, and they fail to address the family separation crisis at the border. 

Background Information:

  • The American Immigration Lawyers’ Association has a brief summary of both bills available here.

Specific Impacts of HR 4760 on immigrant survivors:

  • Eliminates the ability of abused parents of U.S. citizens to apply for VAWA self-petition protections
  • Places limits on individuals on temporary worker (H) visas, from filing civil actions for damages against their employers, potentially limiting the ability of those sexually assaulted or harassed at work from accessing justice
  • Provides for a benefit fraud assessment on various immigration programs including VAWA self-petitions, fiancée visas, Special Immigrant Juvenile Visas, U-Crime victim visas, and asylum, among other immigration programs
  • Bars abused family members, including abused ex-spouses, of drug traffickers from obtaining legal status.
  • Undermines policies that local welcoming jurisdictions have determined are Constitutionally sound and are appropriate for their respective communities, and they decrease the ability of local law enforcement agencies to respond to violent crimes and assist all victims of crime, U.S. Citizens, and immigrants alike.
  • Attempts to coerce local law enforcement agencies into sharing information with ICE by placing restrictions on federal law enforcement funding in grant conditions.
  • Expands criminal penalties for those who are present without authorization. 
  • Expands immigration penalties for individuals with domestic violence convictions, as well as the types of evidence immigration courts can consider in deporting individuals with domestic violence convictions.
  • Reduces access to Special Immigrant Juvenile status for abused and neglected children.

Specific Impacts of HR 6136 on immigrant survivors:

  • Excludes more potential DREAMERS from accessing a new “contingent visa”  by excluding more individuals with certain domestic violence and child abuse convictions. The bill cross-references the broad Violence Against Women Act definitions of domestic violence and child abuse to exclude more potential DACA beneficiaries with such convictions. This cross-reference will create difficulties in expanding access to services for victims in other, future VAWA legislation by tying the definitions in VAWA to immigration consequences.
  • This bill expands definitions relating to domestic violence as a basis for deporting individuals, and fails to provide exceptions or waivers for survivors who may have used violence against their abusers.
  • The bill undermines the work of local communities who’ve implemented welcoming policies that reduce law enforcement collaboration with ICE, policies that encourage immigrant victims to come forward, seek help, and cooperate with police.
  • Undermines important protections for minors who are fleeing sexual assault, domestic violence, and abuse who arrive from Northern Triangle countries, making it easier to deport them back to their countries from which they are fleeing violence.
  • Makes it harder for asylum seekers to flee persecution by increasing the standard of proof need to apply, likely halving the number of asylum seekers. By changing the law to facilitate the quick deportations of asylum seekers and make it harder to apply for asylum, victims fleeing sexual and domestic violence and other forms of gender-based violence, who could articulate a genuine fear of persecution will be deported anyway without the chance to collect evidence or present witnesses before a judge.