911사건이후 미국이민국(U.S. Immigration and Citizenship Services, 줄여서 USCIS)가 이전에는 노동부와 법무부산하에서 거의 독립적인 기관으로 운영되다가 미국국토안보부(Homeland Security) 산하로 들어가면서 국토안보부의 반이민적경향으로 조직이 축소되었고, 트럼프정권에서는 이러한 반이민정서가 극대화되면서, 그동안 미국이민국의 케이스진행은 말로 할 수 없을 정도로 비효율적이고 느려졌습니다.
바이든행정부들어와서 분위기가 바뀔것으로 예상했지만, 실제로 많이 바뀌진 않았는데, 이에 대한 비난을 의식해서인지(아니면 정말 정신차리고 바꾸려고 하는것인지 모르지만) 이를 개선하겠다는 보고서를 2022년 12월 8일 발표하였습니다.
대충 훓어보니 중요한 데이타나 정보들이 꽤 있는것 같으므로, 이에 대해 다른 글에서 차차 풀어나가도록하고 오늘은 리포트원본과 미국이민국의 발표 요약문(영문)을 게재하니, 관심있으신 분들은 먼저 읽어보시기 바랍니다.
"Today, USCIS released itsFiscal Year (FY) 2022 progress reportwith new information demonstrating how it reduced backlogs in certain programs and supported humanitarian missions. The report summarizes numerous steps USCIS has taken, which include strengthening its fiscal stability, and implementing adjudicatory efficiencies, policy measures and agency-wide backlog reduction efforts. At the same time, USCIS has continued to meet the extraordinary demands on its humanitarian programs, upholding America’s promise as a nation of welcome and possibility.
“Every immigration case entrusted to us represents an individual or a family seeking to build a better life in the United States,” said USCIS Director Ur M. Jaddou. “We have made measurable progress towards building a more humane immigration system thanks to the innovation and dedication of the USCIS workforce. There is more work to do, especially to reduce processing times for all people we serve, and congressional support is critical to achieving our ambitious backlog reduction goals in the year ahead.”
The data demonstrates how both backlog reduction and humanitarian services were successfully supported by crucial appropriations by Congress in FY 2022. Moving forward, congressional support of the agency’s FY 2023 budget request will be critical to help support humanitarian services and eliminate current backlogs.
The report also highlights how furlough notices, a hiring freeze, and drastic cuts to contract staff during the COVID-19 pandemic critically impacted USCIS’ ability to keep pace with incoming applications, heightening the need for USCIS to pursue an upcoming fee rule to prevent the accumulation of new backlogs in the future.
Backed by crucial fiscal support from Congress, USCIS restored fiscal stability and turned the tide on backlog growth by surging hiring and establishing an agency-wide focus on operational efficiency. In FY 2022, in coordination with the Department of State, the agency utilized more than 281,000 employment-based visas, twice the typical statutory annual allotment. This was made possible due to the large number of family-sponsored visas that remained unused in FY 2021 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition, USCIS expanded its existing humanitarian mission and responded to emerging priorities for the U.S. government, such as Operation Allies Welcome, Uniting for Ukraine, and the recently announced Process for Venezuelans. The agency surged resources to effectively address its humanitarian responsibilities, which led to the issuance of more than 92,000 work permits for Afghan nationals, many of whom worked alongside us in Afghanistan for the past two decades; the adjudication of benefits to facilitate Afghan resettlement in the United States, such as asylum and special immigrant status; and the issuance of nearly 120,000 travel authorizations to Ukrainian nationals and their immediate family members who were impacted by Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.
In the months ahead, the agency plans to build on this progress by implementing premium processing for all petitions for immigrant workers (Form I-140) and certain employment authorization applications (Form I-765) for students and exchange visitors; establishing a permanent biometrics exemption for all applicants for change of nonimmigrant status and extension of nonimmigrant stay (Form I-539); and simplifying several common forms, including the applications for employment authorization (Form I-765), adjustment of status (Form I-485), and naturalization (Form N-400). In addition, the report highlights upcoming steps to advance the USCIS humanitarian mission, including online filing and notices, new rulemakings, and increased staffing and public engagement."