Students Spared Amid Increase in Deportations
The Obama administration, while deporting a record number of immigrants convicted of crimes, is sparing one group of illegal immigrants from expulsion: students who came to the United States without papers when they were children.
From left, Tania Unzueta, Lizbeth Mateo, Yahaira Carrillo, Mohammad Abdollahi and Raul Alcaraz in a protest in Tucson.
In case after case where immigrant students were identified by federal agents as being in the country illegally, the students were released from detention and their deportations were suspended or canceled, lawyers and immigrant advocates said. Officials have even declined to deport students who openly declared their illegal status in public protests.
The students who have been allowed to remain are among more than 700,000 illegal immigrants who would be eligible for legal status under a bill before Congress specifically for high school graduates who came to the United States before they were 16. Department of Homeland Security officials said they had made no formal change of policy to permit those students to stay. But they said they had other, more pressing deportation priorities.
Read more in Julie Preston's article in the New York Times.
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