Frequently Used Terms

Tens of thousands are fleeing violence and persecution in Central America and elsewhere. But we can help them.

Asylum seeker – a person from another country who has entered the asylum process in the USA. The process begins at the border or within the USA, when a migrant declares a well-founded fear of violence or persecution in their home country due to race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. If this initial ‘credible fear’ testimony is provisionally accepted, the person is general put into detention. This can last for a few days (especially for parents with children) to many months.

Parole – This is the term used for when an asylum seeker is released from detention to live in the USA after they have established that they have a credible fear of violence or death if they were to return to their own country; an asylum seeker is more likely to be released from detention on parole if there is a US citizen who is willing to vouch for them and support them once they are freed from detention. Not to be confused with Humanitarian Parole, which allows for 2 years before having to seek asylum and is granted to Afghans, Ukrainians, and Venezuelans.

USCIS – United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. This is the agency in charge of granting visas and other immigration benefits.

CBP – Customs and Border Protection. This agency was created
to control the flux of persons and goods through U.S. borders.

ICE – Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Closest office is in St.
Albans – must check in regularly). This is the agency in charge of
enforcing immigration laws through various means, including removal

USCIS, CBP and ICE – These three agencies are parts of the Department of Homeland Security. (from Bertoli Law – immigration)

USCRI – US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (private but works
with government to resettle refugees, etc.) There is an office in Rutland.
Asylum – An asylee—or a person granted asylum—is protected from being
returned to his or her home country, is authorized to work in the United
States, may apply for a Social Security card, may request permission to
travel overseas, and can petition to bring family members to the United
States. American Immigration Council .org

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