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Email the Invite your Friends to join the March 2009 DC Rally
Immigration Voice (IV) [http://www.immigrationvoice.org], a grassroots organization working to solve the issues faced by employment-based immigrants, is planning a DC Rally during the first week of March 2009 to bring the issues faced by our community to the notice of US lawmakers.
Details of this initiative are provided here - http://immigrationvoice.org/forum/sh...ad.php?t=22519 (IV needs head count for DC Rally ( March 1st Week, 2009))
I request you to join IV as a member and support this initiative by indicating your interest to participate in the DC Rally and Lobby Day (visiting lawmaker offices to seek their support)
As you might know our community is facing the following situation
1) 140,000 total numbers per year worldwide vs. 1 million applicants and their families waiting in the line. Some from 2001 and may be before that ! It's common sense that it will take at least 6 years to clear just the current backlog, if there were no per country quotas.
2) Per country quotas of 7% exacerbate the situation to applicants from high-demand countries like India, China, Mexico and Phillipines. Approximately just 10,000 visa numbers are available to India where as it's estimated that at least 44% of the applicants may be from India ( based on USCIS statistics of around 44% of H1bs being granted to India every year). As spouse and children are counted, considering 4 members per family, on an average only 2500 Indian applicants get Green cards in a year. As you can see the numbers are dismal.
Meaning, if you are from India, China, Mexico or Phillipines, you may have to wait 10 to 12 years to get your Green Card or more
3) Between USCIS and DOS (Department of State that runs the Visa bulletin) a number visas get wasted every year, worsening the already BAD situation. For instance between 1994 and now 218,000 GCs were wasted by USCIS. ]If the trend continues, it may well mean 15+ years for India/China/Mexico/Phillipines
Now I know the problems ! What's the solution?
1) Increase worldwide EB GC numbers to 290,000 per year or more
2) Eliminate country quotas
3) Exempt spouses and children ( dependents) from the GC quota (this will effectively double the quota)
4) Since USCIS inefficiency cannot be fixed by us, implement a 'Rollover' of unused visas to the next year(s)
5) Recapture the unused number of 218,000 visas . This may mean you'll get GC or at least see PDs jump forward by a few years (reducing your wait time tremendously)
6) Lobby USCIS to relax USCIS strict determination of 'same and similar jobs' (defined by AC21 law) to provide job mobility and promotions.
I know the solution. But, pray, who'll bell the cat?
Fortunately for us, there is an organization that is working 100% exclusively for our cause. Immigration Voice ( http://www.immigrationvoice.org) a non-profit organization formed by EB immigrants to work for our cause. Starting with barely 200 members when it was formed in 2005, now it boasts a membership of 30,000 members and around 30 state chapters serving every US state with significant EB immigrant population.
Immigration Voice ( fondly called IV by it's members) lobbies the US Congress and USCIS to provide relief to us. They have hired a high-profile lobbying firm Patton Bloggs to do lobbying for our cause. In addition they also do grassroots lobbying at State chapter level with the local Congressmen.
What's Lobbying? Is it Legal for non-citizens ?
Lobbying or 'Advocacy' is the act of Petitoning the US Government to redress issues faced by any person living in the United States. It's a right guaranteed by US Constitution (First Amendment) to every person living in the United States, citizen or not.
Just like you can argue your own case in a court of law (if you choose to do it), you can also lobby or petition the US Government on your own. If you chose so, you can also hire a professional lobbying firm to do it for you, just like you can hire a lawyer to represent you in the court. Both are legally guaranteed rights. It's common sense that a professional does a better job - be it an experienced lawyer or a lobbying firm. Getting professional help greatly increases the chances of success.
Boy, It must be really COSTLY to hire those DC Lobbyists?
You are right. They are costly, but IV has been managing to keep the effort funded through sacrifices of it's Leadership (IV Core group), voluntary contributions from it's members, local fundraising campaigns by State chapters and selling IV-branded merchandise.
Contributions are what keep IV ticking and working for you.
I understand IV has been doing all this? Have they had any success so far? I don't want to invest in a campaign destined for failure !
IVs success record so far in the order of signifance to EB community
1) July Visa bulletin Reversal - Due to flip-flop by USCIS 350,000 applicants were denied the promised ability to file I-485 in July 2007. Chances are you might have been one of them ! We faced the grim prospect of losing thousands of dollars and countless hours of effort .
IV conducted 'Flower Campaign', i.e sending Flowers to USCIS director Emilio Ganzales to request redressal of this unfair decision (in the spirit of passive resistance movement of Mahatma Gandhi). It provided wide media coverage to the issue nationwide.
IV through it's California chapter, conducted the successful 'San Jose Rally' to highlight the isue to the Congressmen through the media. It also took an active role in petitioning San Jose Congresswoman Rep. Zoe Lofgren to help fix the issue. As it turns out Madame Lofgren, who also happens to be the Chairwoman of House sub-commitee on Immigration, was instrumental in forcing USCIS to rescind (revert) it's prior unjust decision ! An IV effort that paid rich dividends.
IV actively particpated in discussions with USCIS in deciding the modality of reversing the decision, and was the first group to announce it, even before USCIS and US Department of State !
IV Walked the Talk and helped the EB Community immensely
3) Lobbying USCIS for administrative reforms - IV participated in the FBI Namecheck backlog reduction meeting ( when it approached alarming figures with some waiting for 1-3 years), where USCIS announced increased FBI funding to expedite the checks and other process improvements to increase efficiency.
IV also successfully lobbied USCIS to increase validity of EAD/AP to 2 years from the previous validity period of 1 year. It has resulted in a saving of at least $1400 per year for every EB immigrant family that has filed I-485
IV continues to lobby USCIS to relax USCIS strict determination of 'same and similar jobs' (defined by AC21 law) to provide job mobility and promotions
All right. Is there anything I can do to help IV?
Definitely ! IV is an organization of volunteers just like you and me. There are several ways you can help IV. For starters by participating in the very important upcoming DC Rally and the Lobby Day.
Just spread the word. Forward this E-mail to all your friends waiting for GCs.
1) Join : IV forums are a good source for finding answers to Immigration related matters and exchange information. IV also conducts pro-bono (FREE) lawyer conferences for members on a regular basis.
Website link - http://www.immigrationvoice.org.
Member registration - http://immigrationvoice.org/forum/register.php
2) Contribute : As you have understood, Lobbying requires lot of funding. IV needs your support to keep the good work running.
You can contribute either one time or join as a monthly (recurring) contributor [preferred] here -
You can send ANY AMOUNT to IV as a contribution. All you need to do it create a PayPal account (if you don't have one), register a bank acount/Credit Card with PayPal (if not already done). Send money to IV using E-mail id - email@example.com
3) Volunteer : If you are open to volunteering, you can join your local State Chapter of IV. State chapters conduct activities such -
a) Lawmaker meetings with Congressmen to discuss issues faced by EB immigrants
b) Fundraising at local Events
c) IV publicity through Flyers at public places & Events
d) Local media outreach to get media coverage for EB community
Benefits of joining : State Chapters provide more detailed coverage of IV updates issued from time to time than available at IV forums (restricted due to presence of anti-immigrants). They also provide updates early ( 2-3 days before stuff gets posted on IV)
How to join ? : Yahoo/Google groups for the State chapters are listed here.
http://immigrationvoice.org/index.ph...d=72&Itemid=52 ( Scroll to the bottom !)
Submit a request to join your State chapter with your - IV id, Full Name, E-mail, Telephone number (mandatory to filter anti-immigrants). State chapter leaders will call to verify and you are in !
You have covered it in detail. Yet, I have many unanswered questions! Whom should I contact to get more info?
Ask IV !
Call - (202) 386-6250
E-mail - firstname.lastname@example.org
Truth Will Set You Free
Last edited by walking_dude; 11-25-2008 at 06:45 PM. Reason: link to thread
You are doing great...Please keep up the good work...
also, add item 6 to our wish list..
6. Remove "same or similar" clause in EAD which is causing lots of confusion. Just see that anyone who gets a EAD works in the Information technology field and not flipping burgers.
NC State Chapter
Attended the DC Rally
Attended the Advocacy days in DC - 2011
Status : I-485 pending, PD Feb 2005, EB3 - India
Good work, but small modification.
Just take out this phrase in the list
or increase them to rational levels such as 10%-15%
Truth Will Set You Free
Thanks. Please consider sending the E-mail to your friends as well. We need as many to participate as possible. If not possible to attend due to excruciating circumstances, at the least please consider contributing monetarily to this effort.
Truth Will Set You Free
Let us do E-mail all our friends. We need all the support we can gather.
Truth Will Set You Free
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