Immigrants in Legal Limbo - Waiting for Real Reform

Ernesto Castañeda, American University

The victims of a broken U.S. immigration system include members of legal resident families waiting decades for citizenship applications to be processed. One man's story reveals how backlogs and patchwork reforms hassle newcomers and deprive America of their full productive talents.

Read Castañeda's brief here. It uses the case of "Daniel Estrella" to probe the irrationalities of the current U.S. system for processing citizenship applications.

Learn more about Ernesto Castañeda and his research on Latin and Muslim immigrants in countries ranging from France and Spain to Algeria, Morocco, and the United States. Castañeda's studies look closely at ties between the United States and Mexico and probe issues of immigrant health and the avenues for immigrants and minorities to gain voice in politics. He makes frequent contributions to public discussions through both English and Spanish-language media outlets.

Along with fellow SSN member Josiah Heyman, Casteñada has written an eye-opening brief documenting the relative safety of life along the U.S. border with Mexico. Border cities, it turns out, have less violent crime than comparable cities far from the border.

May 2013