National Radio Program Offers View Of Former Immigration Judge

Marketplace, the national radio program produced by American Public Media in association with the University of Southern California, is distributing a report about the backlog in America’s immigration courts. It introduces the report by noting that “… hundreds of thousands of immigration-related cases are in the courts now, meaning it can take years to be granted asylum, or get deported. Currently, there are nearly 500,000 cases pending in court. And on average, according to research done at Syracuse University, those pending cases have been open for more than 600 days… for some judges, the backlog has more than doubled their yearly caseload.”
The on-air report actually omits some of those facts and leaves the impression that the “courts” are the normal kind, not the civil hearings held by a division of the Justice Department. Actually, the audio amounts to a powerful statement by an immigration judge (again, note that immigration judges are hired by, and work for, the Justice Department although some are arguing for independence) who retired early after 20 years. She says she didn’t want to be part of the system and now works to represent the kinds of cases she used to decide. For a “ground-level view,” listen to the story here: