Hiring Freeze to Affect Immigration Court Backlogs
A major concern with the hiring freeze is whether it will affect immigration judge hiring. At the time of this post, the White House has not yet published the text of the order. The massive immigration court case backlog continues to grow, and the immigration system desperately needs more judges to operate efficiently and to ensure fair hearings that comport with due process. Congress has funded a total of 374 immigration judges, but the immigration courts currently only employ 296. Moreover, according to Human Rights First, that current funded level is not enough. To eliminate the backlog by 2023, an additional 150 immigration judges would need to be hired on top of the 374 currently funded, for a total of 524 immigration judges.
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