Elizabeth Keyes, Director of the University of Baltimore School of Law Immigrant Rights Clinic, stressed the important role of excellent service providers, including Tahirih Baltimore, in serving immigrants who may be able to benefit from President Obama’s executive action on immigration.
The most interesting question about President Barack Obama’s action on immigration is not its legality. Presidents from Eisenhower forward, Republicans and Democrats alike, have used their executive authority to legalize immigrants in large and small measures, and their actions roused little debate.
In fact, most Americans want the situation of the undocumented to be regularized. (Last week, 60 percent of respondents in an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll favored a path to citizenship for immigrants.) President Obama’s program, in which nearly 4 million immigrants will be eligible for a new status that would permit them to work legally, is a promising start.
The key question for me, as the director of the University of Baltimore School of Law’s Immigrant Rights Clinic, is how to best reach, educate and serve those immigrants in Maryland who may be able to benefit from Mr. Obama’s announcement — and how to help them avoid victimization.