The Biden administration is now telling USCIS officials to use more “inclusive language” such as “undocumented noncitizen” or “undocumented individual” instead of saying “illegal alien” when referring to those coming into the United States illegally.
The White House is stating that President Biden strongly “believes in the rights” of illegal immigrants. This is a move to embrace “Dreamers” as well as other illegal immigrants.
A memo was issued to administration staffers on Tuesday that conveyed the directive from the White House. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services acting director Tracy Renaud was the one that relayed the new ‘acceptable terminology concerning immigration topics.’
“Illegal alien” was not the only term that was on the chopping block. “Assimilation” will now be “integration” or “civic integration.”
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Axios broke the story on Tuesday. Renaud was reported as pushing “more inclusive language in the agency’s outreach efforts, internal documents and in overall communication with stakeholders, partners and the general public.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki seemed to confirm on Tuesday that an “earned path” to citizenship would be included in Biden’s immigration reform policies.
“Part of the proposal that the president outlined and proposed on day one is an earned path to citizenship for 11 million immigrants who are undocumented immigrants, who are living in the country,” she stated.
“He’s also somebody who believes in the rights of the DACA recipients to be in the country. He was here during the, of course, Obama-Biden administration, of which he played a prominent role — an important role — and supported that program.”
“We’ve outlined the tenets of what we think the proposal should look like, which includes that, but also includes funding to address the root causes, includes investment in smart security. But Congress will have to work through what it looks like moving forward and what components will be included in here or what components could be dealt with separately,” Psaki vaguely added.
Biden is expected to unveil his immigration reform package in Congress this week. His plan will ostensibly provide a five-year path to obtaining legal status for “Dreamers” in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and other immigrants or a green card for those who pass a background check, pay taxes and meet other requirements. After the five-year process, the immigrant would embark on a three-year path to citizenship.
“By statute, ‘alien’ literally means a person not a U.S. citizen or national. That is not offensive, and neither is ‘assimilation,'” stated Robert Law, who is a former Trump administration official that is currently working at the Center for Immigration Studies.
In 2015, California similarly removed the word “alien” from their labor code.
New York City politicians banned the use of “alien” and “illegal” in reference to undocumented immigrants last year. The Big Apple can now fine an individual $250,000 if they use “illegal alien” or “illegals” with “intent to demean, humiliate or harass a person.”
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