With budgets in crisis and the recession showing no signs of abatement, Massachusetts is looking for creative ways to cut prison spending. In a recent Joint Committee on the Judiciary session, Republican lawmakers and a group of sheriffs asked the Committee to support a bill that would require Massachusetts inmates to pay for their time in lock up.
Despite mounting evidence of targeted violence, immigration judges seldom recognize that Mexican nationals have a “well-founded fear of persecution”- the substantive criteria for asylum in the United States.
Last week, Federal District Judge Sharon Blackburn declined to strike major portions of Alabama’s extreme anti-immigrant law, HB 56, making Alabama the state with the strictest immigration laws in the country.
Recently, The Nation and The New York Times disclosed that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) may be involved in the transfer of suspected terrorists to Somalia for detention and interrogation, in violation of US and international law.
Victims of persecution and torture should never be at the mercy of a filing deadline to gain asylum. Most asylum seekers do not realize that they only have one year after their arrival to apply for asylum. If they miss this deadline, they risk being sent back to their countries and into the hands of their tormentors.