The immigration proposal outlined Monday by a bipartisan group of senators is intended to create a new system in which border security is enhanced while those who are in the United States illegally get a chance at a green card.
• Provide Border Patrol with updated technology, infrastructure and personnel.
• Increase use of unmanned aerial drones and other surveillance equipment.
• Create “entry-exit system” to track temporary visa holders and ensure they leave the country as required.
Path to Legal Status and Citizenship
• Require current undocumented immigrants to pass a background check, pay fines and pay back taxes before earning “probationary legal status” that allows them to live and work in the United States.
• Mandate that probationary immigrants “go to the back of the line” as they apply for a green card.
• Require probationary immigrants to pass another background check, pay taxes, learn to speak English, go through civics education and prove they have worked in the United States before getting a green card.
• Require that border security enforcement measures be completed before green cards are given to those on probationary status.
• Bar probationary immigrants from receiving federal entitlement and other benefits.
• Create a separate path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as minors (also known as the DREAM Act).
• Create a separate path to a green card for agricultural workers.
• Require a reduction in backlogs on visas for family and employment.
• Give green cards to immigrants who earn a doctorate or master’s in science, technology, engineering or math from a U.S. university.
• Create “stiff fines and criminal penalties” for employers who knowingly hire undocumented workers.
• Create an electronic employment verification system to ensure that employers can check the status of new workers.
• Allow employers to hire immigrants if they can prove they could not find an American to do the job.
• Allow more immigrants in times of job growth, but restrict immigration when the job market is shrinking.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.