Immigration symposium confirms the need for overhaul of the U.S. Immigration system
June 7, 2011
Are there serious flaws with the U.S. immigration system? Yes, was the primary response echoed by a group of leading immigration experts who convened at Penn State University’s Dickinson School of Law on March 18 for a symposium titled “Immigration Adjudications: Court Reform & Beyond."
Sponsored by Penn State Law's Center for Immigrants' Rights and organized by Professor Shoba Sivaprasad Wadhia, director of the center, the program included a diverse lineup of speakers with backgrounds ranging from current immigration judges and legal practitioners to representatives from the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) and Equal Justice Works. Throughout the day, the panelists examined the state of immigration adjudications and debated proposed administrative and legislative solutions, including the creation of an independent immigration court.
The four panels covered a wide range of issues, but the topic of reform was the pervasive theme. The "Chronicles of Adjudication" covered both the history and current approach of the U.S. Immigration System. Some of the discussion also focused on cases that never reach adjudication. In the panel entitled From the Prison to the Courtroom, presenter Chris Nugent pointed out that more than 350 facilities, the majority of which are prisons in remote locations, hold over 300,000 detainees on an annual basis, which resulted in over 282,000 people last year being deported from the U.S.