Just few hours in the office, Joe Biden reversed many policies of Donald Trump administration from the last four years. This changes the tone of anti-immigrant actions taken before. For the first day in office the president had already planned to unveil the immigration reform bill. The immigration reform bill provides a pathway for undocumented people getting citizenship.
Previously, Trump had excluded all the undocumented people for the census, banned their travel, deported them and used to divert funds to the making of the wall on US-Mexico border. On Wednesday after taking charge, President Biden used executive actions to end all these policies. He also issued a presidential memo to show the support of the administration for the program of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (Daca) program. This program allows the children who were brought to USA without legal documents to get a temporary work visa and not be deported. Trump administration ended the program of Daca in 2017 but was rejected by the Supreme Court.
In another memo issued by Biden, the program protecting 4000 Liberians who had Deferred Enforced Departure (DED), holding a protected immigration status was extended. Leaders of immigration advocacy groups celebrated the first moves made by Biden’s administration.
Along with these, Biden also reversed an order which Trump signed on the fifth day after taking the office that made the interior immigration Law enforcement to prioritize the deportation of around 10.5 million undocumented people in the US, including longtime residents, families and dreamers. Biden told the department to not prioritize deportation.
Biden taking things forward also ended the travel ban which was kept in place by Trump in his first week of office. The state department is instructed by Biden to restart the process of visa processing for the countries which got affected by the travel ban.
Biden’s administration emphasized on planning to address the root causes of migration, including sending aid to Central American countries where there is an increase in family immigration due to multiple reasons. It is expected that Biden administration will have a very different approach towards regional migration when compared with the last four years.
Biden will also send an immigration bill to Congress after taking the office. It is expected that the US citizenship Act of 2021 will allow all the undocumented immigrants to be able to apply for temporary legal status, let them apply for green cards after living for five years if they pay their taxes and have a clean background record. Temporary protected status holders, dreamers and Immigrant farm workers who meet some requirements will be eligible for green cards immediately, after three years of having green card they can apply for citizenship.
Furthermore, the administration of Biden is also keen to build back the US asylum and Refugee program but this could take few months to get it in practice.