Justice Center and Willkie Farr & Gallagher Partner on Emergency Planning for Immigrant Families Legal Clinic
by CBJC Staff May 4, 2017
The City Bar Justice Center’s Immigrant Justice Project and Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP held a legal clinic on April 27, 2017 to advise immigrant families on what legal measures they may take to protect their citizen children in the event that parents are detained or deported. Clinics and presentations targeting this emerging issue, with support from Fragomen Fellow Danny Alicea and in collaboration with law firms, are part of the Justice Center’s response to the onslaught of inquiries from parents and social workers asking what their options are. This year, the New York legal community has shown up in full force to demonstrate their commitment to advocating for immigrants, from the immediate volunteer response at JFK in January to the packed, Justice Center co-sponsored “Emergency Preparedness for Families Affected by the Executive Orders on Immigration” event held at the City Bar on March 6 for the legal profession and public interest advocates.
The April 27th clinic at Willkie’s office began with a training for attorneys led by Danny Alicea. Alice Morey, the Justice Center’s Managing Attorney, Jennifer Kim, Immigrant Justice Project Co-Director, and Stephanie Guzman and Lorena Ramirez, Project Coordinators, facilitated the clinic at which 20 Willkie Farr attorneys advised 13 families on their rights. Most of the clients at the clinic were parents who have been living in the U.S. for more than 20 years.
“Never has the partnership between the private bar and legal services providers been more important,” said Morey. “Watching our clients sit down with Willkie attorneys was a powerful and hopeful sight to witness— we’re all committed to securing justice, together.”
In addition, the Justice Center has an active schedule of community clinics. At a recent clinic held at BMCC, coordinated by Danny Alicea, nine students received assistance with their citizenship applications. A representative at BMCC said of the clinic: “On behalf of BMCC Administration and the Single Stop staff, I would like to extend sincere appreciation to you and the attorneys for the tremendous service that you provided … to our students.”
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