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Immigration Law

News Excerpts From the Jan. 15, 2014, Bender’s Immigration Bulletin

Labor Department to Delay Implementation of BALCA Ruling in Island Holdings |

On December 20, 2013, the Labor Department announced that it would seek review of the ruling issued by the Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals in Matter of Island Holdings LLC, which vacated supplemental prevailing wage determinations issued after DOL’s interim final rule on wages under the H-2B program. See the discussions at pages 25 and 27 of the January 1, 2014, issue of the Bulletin.

DOL stated that it would not immediately implement the BALCA decision in light of the pending class action CATA v. Perez, 13-CV-07213 (E.D. Pa.), which could ultimately overturn the Island Holdings decision. DOL stated that all pending appeals of supplemental prevailing wage determinations would be stayed pending resolution of the district court action.

Pro Se Manual for Survivors of Domestic Violence Released

On December 20, 2013, the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies at the University of California Hastings College of Law ( released a manual to assist women seeking protection in the United States after surviving domestic violence in their native countries. The manual was developed in response to reports of women who failed to seek or were denied asylum due to their inability to obtain legal representation while in immigration detention. The manual explains how women fleeing domestic violence can apply for asylum affirmatively or as a form of relief from removal. Future versions of the manual will be available in Spanish and Haitian Creole.

MAVNI Program Expanded to Reserve and Guard Units

On December 13, 2013, the Department of Defense authorized the expansion of the Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest program to the Reserves and National Guard. Under the MAVNI program, certain aliens who are not LPRs may enter the Armed Forces if they possess medical skills or speak selected languages. The program is open to asylees, refugees, aliens with Temporary Protected Status, and members of most nonimmigrant categories. Enlistees in the MAVNI program are permitted to naturalize after they complete basic training. As a result of the announcement, 100 of the 1,500 annual enlistees will be permitted to serve in the Reserves or the National Guard. For more information consult Appendix A. Information on MAVNI in general is at 17 Bender’s Immigr. Bull. 1907 (Dec. 1, 2012).

USCIS Releases FOIA Request Processing Guide

In response to a request under the Freedom of Information Act, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services released a guide detailing how the agency handles request under FOIA and the Privacy Acts. The guide, which incorporates all articles previously published in FOIA “Information Bulletins,” explains the agency’s standards for withholding documents under each FOIA exemption. The FOIA release also included other documents issued by DHS, including a guide issued in 2012 entitled “Handbook for Safeguarding Sensitive Personally Identifiable Information.” The five-hundred-plus pages are available at

Bender's Immigration Bulletin

[This is an excerpt from the Jan. 15, 2014, issue of Bender's Immigration Bulletin.]

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