The Center for Immigration Law, Policy and Justice

The CILPJ at Rutgers University explores contemporary and historical immigration and citizenship laws to better understand the complex ways that law and society determine who belongs in the United States. Through interdisciplinary scholarship, legal, policy and advocacy-based initiatives and public engagement, the CILPJ explores and supports the adoption of equitable and more inclusive laws, regulations, policies, and practices for all people – citizens and non-citizens alike.


The CILPJ engages in legal and policy research to examine ways that immigration and citizenship laws define rights and privileges of immigrants and their families. It also highlights the scholarships of CILPJ faculty that explore questions of immigration and citizenship laws and policies.

Recent News

Prof. Randi Mandelbaum Comments on Denials And Delays of Special Juvenile Status Applications

Reuters reported on the increased rejections of applications and delays in the processing of applications filed by immigrant youths under the Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) program. Under SIJ, immigrant youths (defined as those who are below 21 years old) may submit an application for permanent residency if they have been abused, abandoned, or neglected by a parent. As CILPJ affiliate faculty and Child Advocacy Clinic Director, Prof. Randi Mandelbaum explained, the law requires the administration to process these applications within six months.  Yet, she has cases that have lingered for over a year. Here’s the rest of the story.

The US is Violating an American’s Right to Return

Recently, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has refused to allow an American,  Hoda Muthana, to come back to the United States.  In so doing, CILPJ Director Prof. Rose Cuison Villazor argues that Secretary of State Pompeo has violated one of the most important rights of citizenship —the right to return to the United States. Here’s her op-ed on this issue.

New Jersey Bar Association Foundation’s Special Immigration Edition

The New Jersey Bar Association Foundation issued a Special Immigration Edition on various contemporary immigration issues. It includes discussions of President Trump’s rescission of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), the NJ State Attorney General Gurbir Grewal’s Immigrant Trust Directive, and the proposal to include  citizenship in the U.S. Census.  The articles include quotes from CILPJ Director Rose Cuison Villazor and affiliate faculty Professor Alan Hyde.