UPDATE: Military families: Parole in place & DACA remain

The Department of Homeland Security has begun implementing Trump’s Executive Order entitled “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States,” issued by the President on January 25, 2017. While the language in the memo seems to target Parole in Place,  according to the BBC news they were contacted by spokeswoman from the Department of Homeland Security that said it is still a functioning program.

What is Parole In Place?

Parole in place was a policy that allowed immigrant relatives of military members to stay in the US. The Policy Memorandum stated that: “absent a criminal conviction or other serious adverse factors,” that immigrant spouses, children and parents of active duty military plus reservists and veterans could be given parole in place status based on prior policy.

What happened to parole in place?

As of February 17, 2017 Parole in Place sounded like it had been rescinded: meaning no longer an option. The memo that rescinded Parole In Place states:

…with the exception of the June 15, 2012, memorandum entitled “Exercising Prosecutorial Discretion with Respect to Individuals Who Came to the United States as Children,” and the November 20, 2014 memorandum entitled “Exercising Prosecutorial Discretion with Respect to Individuals Who Came to the United States as Children and with Respect to Certain Individuals Who Are the Parents of U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents,”  all existing conflicting directives, memoranda, or field guidance regarding the enforcement of our immigration laws and priorities for removal are hereby immediately rescinded…

But according to the spokesperson from Homeland Security, Parole in Place is still available. With 3 former Generals advising the President, this stands to reason.

What would it mean for immigrant family members of military if Parole in Place WAS rescinded?

If your family member already had a green card, they would not be in any danger of being deported.

BUT active duty military, reservists and veterans with undocumented or immigrant family members would need to get to an immigration lawyer immediately to find out what options there were.

In fact the memo also states that Homeland Security has told ICE  to hire another 10,000 officers and agents to “to take enforcement actions consistent with available resources.”

If you are thinking about applying for Parole In Place, it might be wise to do so as soon as possible.

What about DACA?

DACA is the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals that allows youth aged 15-31 to stop deportation and get work permission in the United States. It can be used to stop the deportation of parents as well under certain circumstances. DACA has now been rescinded as of September 5th 2017. Please read this blog post for more information on DACA.

Remember: Don’t Panic

We have faced many challenges in the last decade to immigration, and we have succeeded in helping many thousands of immigrants and their families successfully become US citizens. For cases like these my only advice is not to try and handle it on your own, call the best immigration lawyer you can find.




Written by: Harlan York

Immigration Attorney Harlan York is Former Chair, Immigration Section, NJ State Bar Association and Former Co-Chair, NY State Bar Association CFLS Immigration Committee. Mr. York appeared on National Television on CBS This Morning with Charlie Rose and Primer Impacto on Univision, as well as Telemundo, NBC, and PBS. He was honored as First Ever Immigration Lawyer of The Year in NJ by Best Lawyers.

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