New Trump Initiative Will Not Have Drastic Effect On Reduction Of Immigration - Lawyer

New Trump Initiative Will Not Have Drastic Effect on Reduction of Immigration - Lawyer

WASHINGTON (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 13th August, 2019) The Trump administration's decision to deny permanent residence to applicants who rely heavily on welfare programs will not lead to a serious reduction of immigration as other factors reduced it already significantly, the founder of Washington-based National Capital Legal Services Elizabeth Krukova told Sputnik on Tuesday.

On Monday, the US administration announced that immigrants may be denied permanent residence status in the United States if they use food assistance, housing vouchers and other welfare benefits over a threshold referred to as a "public charge."

"I do not think it will have a drastic effect on reduction of immigration," Krukova said. "That goal was achieved by other means and it was already happening."

The lawyer, who specializes on immigration cases, noted that the flow of immigrants has been reduced since Donald Trump became US President.

"For the US it might not be a very bad idea to try to sort out the people who are coming to the country," she said. "But I think this system where a lot of discretion is being given to the individual consular officers during their interviews is not very good because we know that there have been a lot of cases of abuse by the consular officers."

New regulations will come into force in October.

However, Krukova highlighted that a lot of cases against potential immigrants already made in light of this rule which was widely discussed in the media in recent months.

"Unfortunately, under current administration this discretion was not exercised to the benefit of the immigrants," she said.

The lawyer noted that potential green card seekers from poor counties will be the most affected category as they may have not enough education, skills and wealth for getting US permanent residence. Immigrants from Russia and other CIS countries will be affected less, she said.

Meanwhile, the new policy provides more clarity on what benefits potential immigrants may and may not use to be eligible for a green card, Krukova said.

"Before it was really uncertain which benefits were covered and which not. With this new regulation at least it will become more clear," she said.

As such, the lawyer noted that people should not refuse to apply for benefits that are specifically excluded from the regulation.

The new policy sparked a wave of criticism from Trump's opposition. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) called the move a crackdown on poor people while US Congressmen Eliot Engel emphasized that US administration targets immigrant families.

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