GONZALEZ URGES PRESIDENT TRUMP TO ACT ON DEPORTED VETERANS

Monday, March 27, 2017 Contact: Jose Borjon Cell: (956) 459-2415 jose.borjon@mail.house.gov   Gonzalez Urges President Trump to Act on Deported Veterans   WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (D-McAllen) sent a letter to President Donald Trump urging him to take action on deported veterans.  “Veterans who served our country with honor should have never been deported,” U.S. Congressman Vicente Gonzalez said. “President Trump should honor his commitment to our veterans and bring them home.” Below is the letter in full: Continue reading

H.R.1470 - Restoring Respect for Immigrant Service in Uniform Act

Shown Here: Introduced in House (03/09/2017) Restoring Respect for Immigrant Service in Uniform Act This bill expresses the sense of Congress that the Department of Homeland Security should exercise its discretion (including through the use of exceptions to inadmissibility based upon family reunification, humanitarian, or public benefit grounds, temporary waiver of inadmissibility, or consent to reapply for admission) to admit to the United States an alien who is inadmissible, was previously subject to an order of removal or has been removed, is outside of the United States, and is seeking U.S. admission, if such alien: has been a member of the Armed Forces for at least 180 days and has not received an other-than honorable discharge; has not been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors that are not significant misdemeanors and that each occurred on a different date and arose out of separate conduct; and is not otherwise a threat to national security or public safety. The Immigration and Nationality Act is amended to exempt from deportation an alien who has been a member of the Armed Forces for at least 180 days and has not received an other-than honorable discharge, except in the case of an alien who: has been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors that are not significant misdemeanors and that each occurred on a different date and arose out of separate conduct; and is otherwise a threat to national security or public safety. "Significant misdemeanor" means a misdemeanor: (1) that is a crime of domestic violence, (2) that is a sexual assault, (3) that involved the unlawful possession of a firearm, or (4) for which the alien was sentenced to prison for more than 90 days. Continue reading

Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher Proposes Legal Assistance Fund for Deported Military Veterans

AB 386 Would Provide Legal Aid to Deported Veterans Seeking Reentry to the Country They Served SACRAMENTO – (Thursday, February 9th, 2017) – California State Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D-San Diego) today introduced Assembly Bill 386 to provide legal representation to foreign-born U.S. military veterans who have been deported under federal immigration law. AB 386 would create the Veteran Reentry Assistance Fund to receive both private funding as well as money budgeted by the Legislature to contract with qualified non-profit legal service organizations to provide legal services to deported veterans who are seeking reentry to the nation they served. “These men and women have fought for our country, only to be tossed aside by the very government they served, and that’s offensive to me as a American and as the wife of a veteran” Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher said. “These veterans deserve a chance to plea their case in immigration court.” A recent report by the American Civil Liberties Association (ACLU) of California titled Discharged, then Discarded highlighted the federal government’s cruel policy of deporting immigrant veterans for minor, misdemeanor offenses, such as possession of marijuana. Continue reading

Veteran Visa and Protection Act

H.R.5695 - Veterans Visa and Protection Act of 2016 Shown Here:Introduced in House (07/08/2016) Veterans Visa and Protection Act of 2016 This bill requires the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to: (1) establish a program to permit eligible deported noncitizen veterans to enter the United States as, and to permit eligible noncitizen veterans in the United States to adjust their status to that of, a noncitizen lawfully admitted for permanent residence; and (2) cancel the removal of eligible noncitizen veterans and allow them to similarly adjust their status. An "eligible" veteran is a veteran who: (1) was not ordered removed, or removed, from the United States due to a criminal conviction for a crime of violence or for a crime that endangers U.S. national security for which the noncitizen served at least five years' imprisonment; and (2) is not inadmissible to, or deportable from, the United States due to such a conviction. DHS may waive such eligibility requirements for humanitarian purposes, to assure family unity, due to exceptional service in the U.S. Armed Forces, or if such waiver otherwise is in the public interest. A noncitizen veteran or service member shall not be removed from the United States unless he or she has a criminal conviction for a crime of violence. A noncitizen who has obtained the status of a noncitizen lawfully admitted for permanent residence under this bill shall be eligible for naturalization through service in the U.S. Armed Forces, except that: (1) the grounds on which the noncitizen was ordered removed from, or rendered inadmissible to or deportable from, the United States shall be disregarded when determining whether the noncitizen is a person of good moral character; and (2) any period of absence from the United States due to the noncitizen having been removed or being inadmissible shall be disregarded when determining if the noncitizen satisfies any requirement relating to continuous residence or physical presence. A noncitizen who has obtained the status of a noncitizen lawfully admitted for permanent residence under this bill shall be eligible for all military and veterans benefits for which the individual would have been eligible if he or she had never been been removed from, or voluntarily departed, the United States. DHS shall: (1) identify cases involving service members and veterans at risk of removal from the United States, and (2) annotate all DHS immigration and naturalization records relating to any noncitizen involved and afford an opportunity to track the outcome. Continue reading