Federal Policy

Resources on this page highlight the most salient federal laws and policies that impact the experiences of immigrant families and children as well as the most common immigration relief options for these children and families.

Medicaid Coverage for Immigrants

By | Child Well-Being, Federal Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law

Medicaid Coverage for Immigrants

Sarah Grusin and Catherine McKee, National Health Law Program (May 17, 2021)

This issue brief clarifies which immigrants are covered by federal Medicaid funding, including a flow chart to help determine eligibility. The brief also outlines states’ verification processes of applicants’ immigration status and income for eligibility purposes.

Congress Should Adopt American Families Plan’s Permanent Expansions of Child Tax Credit and EITC, Make Additional Provisions Permanent

By | Child Well-Being, Federal Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law

Congress Should Adopt American Families Plan’s Permanent Expansions of Child Tax Credit and EITC, Make Additional Provisions Permanent

Chuck Marr, Kris Cox, Stephanie Hingtgen, and Katie Windham; Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (May 24, 2021)

This report details key reasons for permanent expansions of the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit, which would have important implications for children in immigrant families especially.

Essential and Invisible: The Urgent Case for Supporting Immigrant Essential Workers

By | Federal Policy, Immigration Relief, Law/Policy Highlight

Essential and Invisible: The Urgent Case for Supporting Immigrant Essential Workers

Rocio Perez and Adewale Maye, CLASP (July 12, 2021)

This report discusses key challenges encountered by immigrant essential workers during the pandemic and calls for an equitable economic recovery that addresses work conditions and wages as well as improved economic opportunity via a pathway to citizenship.

State of Texas et al v. United States of America et al – Memorandum and Order – July 16, 2021

By | Federal Policy, Immigrant Youth, Immigration Relief, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law

State of Texas et al v. United States of America et al – Memorandum and Order – July 16, 2021

Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (July 19, 2021)

This resource contains the July 16th Memorandum and Order of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas in State of Texas, et al., v. The United State of America, et al., which ruled that DACA is unlawful and vacated the June 15, 2012, memorandum that created DACA.

Central American Minors Program: Providing a Safe Alternative to a Dangerous Migration Journey

By | Federal Policy, Immigrant Youth, Immigration Relief, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law, Unaccompanied Minors

Central American Minors Program: Providing a Safe Alternative to a Dangerous Migration Journey

Kids in Need of Defense (June 7, 2021)

This policy brief provides background, updates, and recommendations on the Central American Minors (CAM) program, which enables some children to apply for refugee protection or parole from their home country.

USCIS Issues Three Policy Updates to “Improve Immigration Services”

By | Federal Policy, Immigration Relief, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law

USCIS Issues Three Policy Updates to “Improve Immigration Services”

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (June 9, 2021)

In efforts to reduce barriers to and improve access to the U.S. immigration system, USCIS has introduced three policy updates in its Policy Manual related to expedited processing, requests for evidence and notices of intent to deny, and employment authorization documents.

A Solvable Challenge: Improving Asylee Access to Health and Other Benefits

By | Federal Policy, Immigration Relief, Law/Policy Highlight

A Solvable Challenge: Improving Asylee Access to Health and Other Benefits

Essey Workie, Mark Greenberg and Lillie Hinkle; Migration Policy Institute (June 2021)

This commentary discusses the many challenges that asylees face in accessing needed health and other public benefits, and offers recommendations for improving access to services and benefits for this vulnerable population.

DHS Announces New Guidance to Limit ICE and CBP Civil Enforcement Actions In or Near Courthouse

By | Federal Policy, ICE, Immigration Enforcement, Law & Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law

DHS Announces New Guidance to Limit ICE and CBP Civil Enforcement Actions In or Near Courthouse

Department of Homeland Security (April 27, 2021)

The Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro N. Mayorkas, has put new limits in place on immigration enforcement actions in or near courthouses. The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) have received information regarding the new guidance set by the Department of Homeland Security.

Forgoing Healthcare in a Global Pandemic: The Chilling Effects of the Public Charge Rule on Health Access Among Children in California

By | Child Well-Being, Federal Policy, Law & Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law, Public Charge

Forgoing Healthcare in a Global Pandemic: The Chilling Effects of the Public Charge Rule on Health Access Among Children in California

Alma Guerrero, Rodrigo Dominguez-Villegas, & Arturo Vargas Bustamante, UCLA Latino Policy & Politics Initiative (April 6, 2021)

This policy brief focuses on seven regions in California to attempt to estimate the chilling effects of the public charge rule on health care access for children during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cut The Contracts: It’s Time To End ICE’s Corrupt Detention Management System

By | Detention, Federal Policy, Highlighted Resources, ICE, Immigration Enforcement, Law & Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law

Cut The Contracts: It’s Time To End ICE’s Corrupt Detention Management System 

NIJC (March 16, 2021) 

Through examining the history of immigration detention and documented nefarious contracting practices, this policy brief calls upon the Biden administration to bring about the immediate end of detention centers and contracts on behalf of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).  

How the U.S. Citizenship Act Impacts Children

By | Federal Policy, Highlighted Resources, Immigrant Youth, Immigration Enforcement, Immigration Relief, Law & Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law, Unaccompanied Minors

How the U.S. Citizenship Act Impacts Children 

CLASP (March 2021) 

This fact sheet covers the potential impact of the recently introduced U.S. Citizenship Act upon children, including a pathway to citizenship, a four-year strategy addressing causes of child migration, the development of guidelines for children in CBP custody, the provision of grants to educational agencies serving unaccompanied minors, facilitating family reunification, and eliminating current restrictions to immigrants for means-tested federal benefits. The authors indicated that collectively, this bill’s implementation would promote immigrant children’s safety and development.

Remedying the Separation of Families at the U.S. Mexico Border

By | Child Well-Being, Deportation, Family Separation, Federal Policy, Highlighted Resources, Immigrant Youth, Law & Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law, Topics

Remedying the Separation of Families at the U.S. Mexico Border 

Ann Garcia, CLINIC (December 1, 2020) 

This transition paper discusses the impact of the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy on immigrant families separated at the border. It then offers five policy recommendations that can be undertaken in the first 100 days of the Biden administration. 

A New Way Forward: What Congress Must Do to Protect the Dignity, Health, and Safety of Children in Immigration Custody

By | Child Well-Being, Detention, Federal Policy, Highlighted Resources, Immigrant Youth, Law & Policy, Law/Policy Highlight, Legal/Law, Topics, Unaccompanied Minors

A New Way Forward: What Congress Must Do to Protect the Dignity, Health, and Safety of Children in Immigration Custody 

National Center for Youth Law (January 2021) 

This two-part briefing describes how federal policy during the last year of the Trump administration has impacted immigrant children and how Congress can legislate comprehensive federal policy for children in federal immigration custody. Specific recommendations describe how the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security could address children’s needs while in custody to ensure their rights are protected. 

Immigrants and the COVID Vaccine: What Do I Need to Know?

By | Child Well-Being, Federal Policy, Law & Policy, Legal/Law, Safety

Immigrants and the COVID Vaccine: What Do I Need to Know? 

North Carolina Justice Center (January 25, 2021) 

In response to the confusion and the spreading of misinformation surrounding immigrants’ eligibility to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, this flyer seeks to clarify basic information about the vaccine, such as its cost and availability. The flyer is available in several languages other than English.  

Review of the Department of Justice’s Planning and Implementation of Its Zero Tolerance Policy and Its Coordination with the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services

By | Family Separation, Federal Policy, Law & Policy, Law/Policy Highlight

Review of the Department of Justice’s Planning and Implementation of Its Zero Tolerance Policy and Its Coordination with the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services

U.S. Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (January 14, 2021)

This document reviews and evaluates the role that the Department of Justice played in developing and implementing the zero tolerance policy along with the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services and finds that DOJ failed to effectively prepare for and manage the implementation of this policy.