Snapshot: Stages and Entities Involved in the Afghan SIV Process

 

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Snapshot: Staffing at US Embassy Moscow v. Russian Embassy USA

 

 

Snapshot: Afghanistan Special Immigrant Visas (SIVs) Issued FY2000-FY2020

 

 

Fiscal Year Visa Statistics
Oct 1-Sept 30

SIVs Issued to Afghanistan

Administration

DPB/Operations Allies Refuge

2,000
(Note: No public data on how many of evacuees are SIVs)

Biden

SIVs FY2021

Jan 20/2021-Sept 30/2021
Oct 1/2020-Jan 20/2021

(Note: Total SIVs will not be available until after 9/30/21)

Biden
Trump

SIVs FY2020
Oct 1-Sept 30

7,878

Trump

SIVs FY2019
Oct 1-Sept 30

9,805

Trump

SIVs FY2018
Oct 1-Sept 30

7,431

Trump

SIVs FY2017

Jan 20/2017-Sept 30/2017
Oct 1/2016-Jan 20/2017

16,370

Trump
Obama

SIVs FY2016
Oct 1-Sept 30

12,298

Obama

SIVs FY2015
Oct 1-Sept 30

6,884

Obama

SIVs FY2014
Oct 1-Sept 30

9,283

Obama

SIVs FY2013
Oct 1-Sept 30

1,597

Obama

SIVs FY2012
Oct 1-Sept 30

237

Obama

SIVs FY2011
Oct 1-Sept 30

121

Obama

SIVs FY2010
Oct 1-Sept 30

111

Obama

SIVs FY2009

Jan 20/2009-Sept 30/2009
Oct 1/2008-Jan 20/2009

680

Obama

Bush GW

SIVs FY2008

Oct 1-Sept 30

817

Bush GW

SIVs FY2007

Oct 1-Sept 30

161

Bush GW

SIVs FY2006

Oct 1-Sept 30

1

Bush GW

SIVs FY2005

Oct 1-Sept 30

1

Bush GW

SIVs FY2004

Oct 1-Sept 30

4

Bush GW

SIVs FY2003

Oct 1-Sept 30

2

Bush GW

SIVs FY2002

Oct 1-Sept 30

0

Bush GW

SIVs FY2001

Jan 20/2001-Sept 30/2001
Oct 1/2000-Jan 20/2001

5

Bush GW
Clinton

SIVs FY2000

Oct 1-Sept 30

3

Clinton

TOTAL SIVs ISSUED

73,689

Compiled by @diplopundit

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Snapshot: Number of Afghan SIVs Allocated by Fiscal Year and Authorizing Legislation

 

Related:

 

 

26,500: Total Number of Principal Afghan SIVs For Issuance After 12/19/2014 Per FY2020 NDAA

 

 

The State Department’s Press Briefing of August 16 is all about Afghanistan. Excerpt below on SIVs:

We have spoken to our effort on behalf of SIVs, so-called Special Immigrant Visa applicants. You ask why we didn’t – why we haven’t done more. Let me just offer a bit of context. Through the course of this program, the United States has resettled, brought to their new lives, more than 75,000 Afghans who have in various ways assisted the United States Government over the years. The Special Immigrant Visa program provides – well, as it was initially conceived and legislated by Congress, it provides a visa to the United States. When this administration recognized that the security situation was becoming – was quickly evolving, many weeks ago we launched Operation Allies Refuge. This was something that was never envisioned in any SIV program, including the one we had in Afghanistan or the one we had in Iraq; that is to say, a gargantuan U.S. effort not only to process, adjudicate, and to grant visas to these so-called special immigrants but to actually bring them to the United States with a massive airlift operation.

It’s been through that operation that 2,000 Afghans have been able to reach the United States. Most of those Afghans have now been able to start their new lives through resettlement agencies. Just – it was a month or so ago we recognized that the need could be even greater for Afghans who are vulnerable, who may be at risk. That is precisely why we initiated a so-called Priority 2, P-2 refugee status program that went beyond – beyond the statutory definitions of who could apply for and be eligible for the SIV program, to include those brave Afghans who not only have helped the U.S. Government over the years but have helped the American people.

We know that there are other vulnerable Afghans – some for the work they have done, some for the things they have said, some for nothing more than their gender – and we are also working and planning to bring as many as we can to safety.

Right now, we are, again, in the process of re-establishing control over the airport. The military has been able to surge resources and will surge additional resources to the theater to allow us to bring, on a large scale, a number of these Afghans who will be able to start new lives in the United States or who will be able to reach safety elsewhere in the world. We are committed to that. We have been flexible. We have been ambitious in our effort to do just that.

Note that FY2020 National Defense Authorization Act  (NDAA) amended the SIV program for Afghanistan and put a limit to the total number of principal Afghan applicants who could be granted a special immigrant visas after December 19, 2012 originally at 22,500. The Congressional Research Service indicates that the State Department has taken the position that the total number of SIVs available after December 19, 2014 is actually 26,500. That number matched the data provided by State to State/OIG when it reviewed the Afghan SIV program in 2020.
CRS also says that the FY2021 CAA, enacted on December 27, 2020, “rewrote the existing statutory visa cap language (which provided 22,500 visas) to authorize a new total of 26,500, an increase of 4,000 visas.”
According to the US Embassy Kabul Consular Section cited by State/OIG, it is common for an SIV applicant to have approximately five derivative family members (one spouse and four children) who qualify to receive SIVs.  If State has already issued 75,000 SIVs, approximately 15,000 principal applicants were already issued visas. Which means, there are 11,000 visas for principal applicants still available;  after that, Congress will need to fix the cap if it wants additional visas to be issued.

Sources: State/OIG/Review of the Afghan SIV 2020 and CRS Report June 21, 2021

 

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Snapshot: State/CA’s Revenue Drop, Staffing , Backlogs

13 Going on 14 — GFM: https://gofund.me/32671a27

 

 

Excerpt from Department of State/AILA Liaison Committee Meeting May 27, 2021:
11.DOS’ decision last year to suspend most of its visa operations overseas, while understandable given the COVID-19 global pandemic, has resulted in enormous frustration for applicants, who face a sizeable backlog of pending immigrant visa cases and limited availability of appointment slots for nonimmigrant travel. Please describe steps now being taken or that are under consideration to staff-up overseas consular operations and increase the numbers of visa appointments? Specifically, are there plans to surge overseas staffing with new officers or temporary assignment or detail (TDY) personnel, as was done a few years ago with domestic passport agencies to reduce their backlogs?
While the Department did suspend operations in March 2020, Presidential Proclamation 10014 (effective April 23, 2020 –Feb 24, 2021) and the geographic proclamations (up until April 8, 2021) also played a major role in limiting our ability to process immigrant visas. The Bureau of Consular Affairs (CA) is under enormous financial pressure as a result of an almost 50 percent drop in revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic.We decreased staffing at some posts based upon demand, though those changes are not irreversible. We constantly monitor staffing and demand and redistribute resources as necessary. We examine all options available as we balance resource constraints and workload. The provision of services to U.S. citizens remains our top priority, but we are directing many resources to address the IV backlog. We are employing a number of innovative solutions to assist IV processing posts, including having other missions provide remote help on everything from correspondence to document review. We are utilizing TDY staffing as resources and conditions allow. Local country conditions can affect our ability to send TDY personnel to process these cases as the safety and welfare of our staff is paramount.
12.Since consular operations are fee-based, is DOS considering an increase in certain consular fees as part of a strategy to properly staff and tackle the backlog?
Possibly, if additional resources are being requested through the formulation process, as those requirements are part of the update on unit costs. Recommendations to adjust fees are made after reviewing annual updates of the cost of service model. It is then that the Comptroller’s office initiates discussions with CA leadership for decisions on fee recommendations for consular services based on full cost recovery to adequately and appropriately fund the Consular and Border Security Program. Once additional resources or in this case, staff, are in place or have been formally requested in the formulation process, the Comptroller’s office would capture them in the annual review to ensure that those additional resources are accounted for and then make the appropriate fee recommendations.

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Snapshot: Some Considerations in Determining Penalty #DisciplinaryAction

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3 FAM 4375 (“SOME CONSIDERATIONS IN DETERMINING PENALTY”) reads as follows:
The following factors should be considered in determining the appropriate penalty. This list is not exhaustive, and not all factors are applicable to all cases.
(1) Nature of the offense, its seriousness, and consequences;
(2) History of past conduct problems, whether or not discipline was imposed (nature and frequency of past offenses and how recent the occurrences);
(3) Intent (possibility of genuine misunderstanding), willfulness of the conduct;
(4) Enticement or provocation;
(5) Position of employee (nature or relationship between behavior and official responsibilities, sensitivity of position);
(6) Culpability of others;
(7) Contacts with the public and prominence of the position;
(8) Notoriety of the offense or its impact upon the reputation of the Department;
(9) Where and when the misconduct occurred – in the United States or abroad, on duty or off-duty;
(10) Length of employee’s service, level of professional experience;
(11) Quality of employee’s work history;
(12) Past contributions and achievements;
(13) Record of cooperativeness, efforts toward and potential for rehabilitation;
(14) Other mitigating or extenuating circumstances;
(15) Clarity with which the employee was on notice of any rules that were violated in committing the offense;
(16) Consistency of the penalty with those imposed upon other employees for similar offenses and with the table of penalties in 3 FAM 4377; and
(17) The adequacy and effectiveness of alternative sanctions to deter such conduct in the future by the employee or others.
“These factors are derived from those enunciated in Douglas v. Veterans Administration, 5 Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), 313 (1981), which established criteria that agencies must consider in determining an appropriate penalty for an act of employee misconduct.”
Source: FSGB 2020-046; 3 FAM 4375 is available online here.
Note: FSGB cases are not available to read online; each record needs to be downloaded to be accessible. Please use the search button here to locate specific FSGB records.

 

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Snapshot: Bureau of Legislative Affairs Org Chart With Unclear Reporting Lines

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Via State/OIG:

Organizational Chart – Bureau of Legislative Affairs – State/H. 2021

 

Oh, but look here. How long has the FAM been outdated, pet?

 

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