The Pentagon will begin sending a backlog of thousands of green-card holders to recruit training, suspending a policy adopted by the Trump administration last year that required more-stringent background checks for some immigrants wanting to serve, according to two defense officials and an internal memo.
The policy adopted in October 2017 called for each green-card holder to submit to and complete a full background check, and respond to all concerns before they could go to boot camp. That was in addition to standard requirements for green-card applicants, such as biometrics screening.
The change put thousands of people in limbo, as their screening languished on average for nearly a year and specific jobs within the military promised to them slipped away.
The new directive says that each armed service must comply immediately with a preliminary injunction issued last month in the District Court for the Northern District of California. In it, Judge Jon S. Tigar agreed with an argument from the American Civil Liberties Union that the Pentagon had not satisfactorily explained why new screening is necessary and said the policy should be disregarded.