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Alliance for Justice Highlights Why DOJ's Unionbusting of NAIJ/IFPTE Judicial Council 2 Jeopardizes Fairness and Transparency in the Immigration Court

Alliance for Justice's (AFJ) has issued a statement calling the Department of Justice's (DOJ) petition to reclassify immigration judges, represented by National Association of Immigration Judges/IFPTE Judicial Council 2 (NAIJ), as management officials as "blatant union-busting move designed to suppress the voices of immigration judges, undermine the independence and integrity of the immigration court system, and erode the rights of immigrants."

The statement, titled "Stop the DOJ from Busting the Immigration Judges’ Union," is timely as the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) is scheduled on on January 7, 2020 to hear the DOJ's petition to remove Immigration Judges' union rights.

As an association of some 120 organizations united in advocating for a fair judicial system with equal access for all, AFJ's reach and focus on due process and protecting the judicial system from politicization makes it a critical voice weighing in on the impact that removing the NAIJ union would have on the integrity of the U.S. Immigration Court.

As AFJ notes, the FLRA already determined that Immigration Judges are not management officials in 2000 and, "[s]ince this decision was issued, the responsibilities of an immigration judge have not changed, so the FLRA should again reject this argument." The DOJ's antiunion effort is a response to the NAIJ's role in providing transparency and accountability to the Immigration Court. NAIJ has provided analysis of recent DOJ policies and called for reforms to ensure due process, judicial independence, and fairness to all parties who appear in the Immigration Court.

AFJ states that "NAIJ serves as one of the last bulwarks against a complete and total takeover of the immigration court system by our Executive Branch," and warns that, "[w]ithout union representation, immigration judges will lose their collective voice and be unable to push back against policies and procedures that undermine the fairness and transparency of the system."

Read the AFJ statement, "Stop the DOJ from Busting the Immigration Judges’ Union" on the AFJ website.

Additional coverage of NAIJ and the DOJ's attacks on the Immigration Judges' union rights and judicial independence can be found here.


Read IFPTE's letter requesting hearings on DOJ's recent policies in the Immigration Court and the DOJ effort to decertify NAIJ.

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