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Immigration Reform: The Good, the Bad, and the Possible

Attendance is limited. Please RSVP to events.law@yale.edu

This symposium will bring together scholars, policy experts, and advocates to discuss immigration reform pending in Congress. We will examine the ways the legislation could transform American immigration law, as well as the serious demands of transition and implementation that will arise if it passes. With passage of any legislation still up in the air, we also will explore alternatives that could be adopted by the Executive Branch to address pressing immigration matters. The conversation will range from labor and employment issues, to law enforcement matters, to the scope and impact of potential legalization programs.


Over the course of this roundtable, we hope to generate conversations about the opportunities and challenges presented by the immigration bills pending in Congress, as well as the consequences of yet another failure of legislative reform. Throughout, we hope participants will address three overarching themes: (1) the reforms of significance being proposed and how we should evaluate them on the merits; (2) the key implementation questions that will be posed should reform pass; and (3) how we should think about the future of the particular issue under discussion if legislative reform fails.We also hope to discuss what might be next for the academic field of immigration law and for advocacy efforts if reform either succeeds or fails.

~ All sessions in Room 120 unless otherwise noted ~

9:15 am
Continental Breakfast

9:45 – 10:00 am
Welcome and Introductions

10:00 – 11:20 am
Session I: Legalization Proposals and the Implementation Challenge
Moderator: Lucas Guttentag
Discussion Leaders: Hiroshi Motomura, Lorella Praeli, Patrick Weil

11:20 – 11:30 am
Coffee Break

11:30 – 12:50 pm
Session II: New Strategies for Business and Labor Admissions
Moderator: Muzaffar Chishti
Discussion Leaders: Ana Avendaño, Tamar Jacoby, and Doris Meissner

1:00 – 2:00 pm
Lunch: Faculty Lounge

2:00 – 3:20 pm
Session III: Enforcement, Border Policy, and Adjudication
Moderator: Adam Cox
Discussion Leaders: Lenni Benson, Marshall Fitz, Michael Wishnie

3:20 – 3:30 pm
Coffee Break

3:30 – 4:50 pm
Session IV: Administrative Alternatives to Legislative Reform
Moderator: Cristina Rodriguez
Discussion Leaders: Tino Cuéllar, Steve Legomsky, Dave Martin

4:50 – 5:00 pm

5:00 – 5:30 pm
Wrap-up Discussion

Sponsored by the Oscar M. Ruebhausen Fund at Yale Law School, New York University School of Law, and the Ford Foundation.