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USCIS to Create Organization of Professional Responsibility

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The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is creating a new internal division to more rigorously police its own caseworkers. The division, called the Organization of Professional Responsibility (OPR), is aimed at the agents who may be too lenient with applicants seeking residency or citizenship. It is a crackdown on employees who may be too forgiving toward applicants for permanent legal residence or citizenship and who may have demerits in their case files, including misdemeanor criminal charges or having received public assistance such as welfare payments. The office will have three divisions, including an Investigations Division to “manage the agency’s programs that investigates cases involving fraud, waste, abuse, or misconduct by USCIS employees”. USCIS adjudicates more than 26,000 immigration and visa applications daily.

USCIS and its director, L. Francis Cissna, have been at the center of the Trump administration’s efforts to slash legal immigration and scrap the family reunification model. He triggered a backlash last month for removing language from the agency’s mission statement that described its focus as securing “America’s promise as a nation of immigrants.”

This is another step to crack down on immigration after Trump promised “extreme vetting” of immigrants during his presidential campaign after Temporary Protected Status was terminated for El SalvadorNicaragua, Haiti, and Sudan nationals, a new immigration plan was created to stop family reunification and end the diversity visa, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival was put up for debate, and the creation of the National Immigration Vetting Center.

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