Immigration Bulletin

Immigrant and refugee affairs

Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-673-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.

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September 24, 2020

Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) Bulletin

Welcome to the City of Minneapolis Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) Bulletin.  In this bulletin you will find information regarding immigration developments and news on issues that impact immigrant and refugee communities in the City of Minneapolis.

Sign up for the OIRA Bulletin here.

City of Minneapolis Commemorates Latino Heritage Month

To commemorate Latino Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15), the Interstate 35W Bridge in Minneapolis was lit teal and orange the evening of Wednesday, Sept. 16. These colors are used by ¡Somos!, the City’s Latino employee resource group.

Latino Heritage Month recognizes the significant contributions the Latino community has made to the United States. Sept. 15, the first day of Latino Heritage Month, is significant because it marks the anniversary of independence for several Latin American countries, including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico celebrates its independence on Sept. 16 and Chile on Sept. 18.

The Latino population in Minneapolis has grown significantly in recent decades with more than 44,000 Latino residents in the city today, representing 10.5% of the city’s population. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, nearly a million children under 5 were not counted nationwide in 2010, and approximately 400,000 them were of Latino descent.

Meet Minneapolis has list of activities for Latino Heritage month and a guide to Latino restaurants, arts studios and businesses on its website.

Important Immigration Developments

Deadline to comment on deportation process rule: Friday 9/25 by 11:59PM

The federal government has proposed a new rule that would impact people in immigration court proceedings and whose cases are on appeal at the Board of Immigration Appeals. The 30 day period to submit a comment to the government will end at 11:59 PM on this Friday, September 25.  Anyone can submit a comment to this proposed rule, and comments ensure that the government considers the opinions of members of the public before implementing rules that have serious impacts, like this one.

The proposed rule would take away due process protections in immigration court proceedings by speeding up deportations and preventing immigration courts from handling proceedings in an orderly fashion. One of the many changes that would be implemented by this rule is indicated below

Administrative Closure: Immigration courts use administrative closure to pause a deportation case from moving forward, when, for example, an immigrant has an application for a visa in process that would resolve the deportation case. An immigration judge’s power to administratively close the deportation case allows time for processing of an application that would ultimately allow the person to resolve their case and remain in the US. This regulation will take away the immigration court's ability to administratively close cases.

The comment period for this rule ends on Friday, September 25 at 11:59PM.  

For additional information about this rule and how to submit a comment visit City of Minneapolis immigration legal service partner Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota:

Filing Fee Increase begins October 2 unless federal injunction is issued

A drastic filing fee increase on immigration applications is scheduled to take effect on October 2. An informational factsheet on the proposed changes, which includes an increase of 85% in the US Citizenship application filing fee, is available in English, Spanish and Somali .The City of Minneapolis has joined multi-city litigation initiated in federal courts in Washington DC and Boston to prevent the fee hike from going into effect. The litigation includes a request for an injunction to halt the October 2 start date of the fee increase.  

Temporary Protected Status: 9th Circuit Decision Impacts

On September 14, 2020 a federal court of appeals in the Ninth Circuit overruled a district court injunction that had prevented the Department of Homeland Security from ending Temporary Protected Status for residents of El Salvador, Nicaragua, Haiti, and Sudan.

It is important to know that this decision does NOT immediately end TPS. More information on the impact of this decision can be found below:

English TPS Fact Sheet

Spanish TPS Fact Sheet 

The City of Minneapolis immigration legal service partner Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota and local community organization COPAL will be hosting a Facebook Live event this Friday September 25 at 4:30 PM in English, and at 5PM in Spanish, explaining the recent 9th Circuit decision. 

TPS beneficiaries from El Salvador, Nicaragua, Sudan and Haiti concerned about this recent decision can obtain additional information from additional City of Minneapolis immigration legal service contract partners, listed on the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs webpage

Additional information about immigrants with TPS in the United States is available below:

Public Charge: Injunction limited and USCIS issues updated guidance 

A recently issued appellate decision allows USCIS to again impose the new public charge rule for some applications for permanent residence in process as of February 24, 2020. USCIS has an updated webpage explaining how it will proceed in light of this decision. 

The public charge ground of inadmissibility only applies to certain applicants for immigration benefits. Helpful informational sheets on the subject of public charge have been issued by Mid Minnesota Legal Aid and the Minnesota State Department of Human Services.  If you have public charge questions please contact one of the numbers indicated in these flyers to receive accurate information on whether this issue impacts you. Please contact OIRA for information in additional languages. 

Citizens of Liberia: The LRIFA based permanent residence filing deadline is December 19, 2020

If you are or know a citizen of Liberia who has not yet obtained US citizenship and has not yet filed for permanent residence based upon the Liberian Refugee Immigrant Fairness Act (LRIFA) there is only a short time left to submit this important application for permanent immigration status in the US. A helpful factsheet on this application process issued by Advocates for Human Rights and Black Immigrant Collective.

The LRIFA application must be received by USCIS by December 20, 2020, and it takes time to prepare the application. More information about the LRIFA program and how to get help to apply is available at the International Institute of Minnesota. Assistance is also available at Mid Minnesota Legal Aid.  Don't wait until the last minute to file or you may lose the ability to obtain this important immigration benefit. Contact one of the resources indicated above for more information. If you have not yet filed your application due to an inability to pay the filing fee, please let us know by contacting the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs at 612-394-6018. 

Citizenship Day Events

Citizenship Day recognizes the day that our United States Constitution was signed,  September 17, and provides an opportunity to reflect on the meaning and importance of citizenship in this country.

Citizenship Day Message from Mayor Jacob Frey

Mayor Frey Citizenship Day Video 2020

Mayor Frey delivered a Citizenship Day message, encouraging permanent residents to obtain citizenship and highlighting ways that we can commit to each other as fellow citizens of this city, including by becoming citizens of the United States, by registering to vote and voting, by completing the Census, and by serving on a Minneapolis Board and Commission.  The video, and accompanying videos in Hmong, Somali and Spanish, are on the OIRA website.

Citizenship Day Information Session on Facebook Live

The City of Minneapolis Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs and the City of St. Paul Immigrant and Refugee Program held a Facebook Live event to celebrate Citizenship Day, focusing on the benefits of becoming a US citizen, both to the individual and to the community. The International Institute of Minnesota also participated in this information session, which also addressed barriers to obtaining citizenship and how we can work together to eliminate those barriers. 


Citizenship Day Informational Session

View the Facebook Live video here.

Where to get immigration assistance

If you or someone you know needs immigration help, please contact the City of Minneapolis Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs, or see this list of trusted nonprofit legal service providers.  Through relationships with immigration legal service partners, the City of Minneapolis demonstrates its commitment to residents, by making sure that residents with immigration questions are connected to safe and trusted providers. 

About the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs

The Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) is an office in the Neighborhood and Community Relations Department. For more information, please visit, email, or call 612-394-6018.

For reasonable accommodations or alternative formats please contact:

 Michelle Rivero, OIRA Director

Department of Neighborhood and Community Relations or 612-394-6018

Visit our webpage at:

People who are deaf or hard of hearing can use a relay service to call 311 at 612-673-3000. TTY users can call 612-263-6850.

Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-673-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.