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Volunteer Now with the NYIC!

Dear friends,

Do you want to be part of an historic moment? Tens of thousands of young people all around the country are lining up to learn how the Obama Administration's new policy can protect them from deportation and allow them to work. Under the policy, known as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), certain immigrant youth who came to the United States as children will be granted a two-year reprieve from deportation and the legal ability to work.

It’s only a partial fix—only the federal DREAM Act and comprehensive immigration reform will provide an adequate and lasting solution—but it will still have a significant impact and is paving the way for more lasting reform.

In New York State, as many as 110,000 New Yorkers could qualify. The New York Immigration Coalition has already received more than 1,000 requests from immigrant youth trying to learn if they qualify and seeking legal assistance.

On Wednesday, August 15th, the first day the reform went into effect, people began lining up at 6 a.m. outside St. Mary's Church on the lower East Side, where the New York Immigration Coalition and our co-sponsoring organizations* held our first legal clinic on the new policy. By 1 p.m., the church opened its sanctuary as young people and their families waited for the crowds of hundreds to be screened by immigration attorneys.








[Photos Above] Young people and their families wait at St. Mary's Church to be screened by immigration attorneys

The event was a momentous occasion and one that will forever remain in our NYIC history - a fitting way to mark our 25th year.

But there is more work to do. And there are ways you can help and be a part of this historic time:

  • Are you a lawyer or law student that can volunteer your time? We have hundreds of young people who have been screened for eligibility but now require legal assistance to complete their applications. Training and supervision will be provided by experienced immigration attorneys so even if you do not have immigration law experience, you can still volunteer!
  • Would you like to volunteer with the NYIC? We need individuals who can help out at our community education events and legal clinics, come to our office to photocopy materials for informational sessions and legal clinics, schedule appointments for applicants with attorneys, schedule legal clinics in coordination with legal and community groups, maintain files and data entry, answer phones and respond to messages.
  • Are you able to donate to the NYIC? We are receiving more than 100 calls each day! In order to meet the overwhelming need in our community, we need more resources and staff. At a minimum, we need to hire temporary workers who can help coordinate volunteers.

Wednesday was an incredibly moving day—despite the long lines and waits, the mood was one of hope and community. There was a generosity of spirit and all-around good will in the room—some of the young people who came seeking assistance ended up pitching in to help other DREAMers and their families; one of the NYIC’s own DREAM fellows worked so hard at the event that he actually forgot to get his own legal screening! It’s not every day you get to experience something so hopeful and positive, and it was definitely a day to remember.








[Photos Above] Young people getting pre-screened for deferred action at NYIC's clinic at St. Mary's Church on Wednesday, August 15th.

This is an historic opportunity to be part of an effort to begin to undo some of the damage of our broken immigration system and allow young people the chance to realize their dreams in the only country they know.

If you are interested in providing pro bono legal assistance or if you would like to consider having your law firm take on a lead sponsorship role in this effort, please click HERE to provide us your information.

If you are interested in volunteering your time, please click HERE.

And please consider providing financial support in any amount you can —checks can be made out to the New York Immigration Coalition at 137-139 West 25th Street, 12th floor, NY NY 10001; or by donating online here.

Thank you! We are thrilled to have you join us at this moment of such great hope and promise!


Chung-Wha Hong
Executive Director

Our co-sponsors (to date):

  • Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez
  • African Services Committee
  • Atlas: DIY
  • Cabrini Immigrant Services
  • Chinese Progressive Association
  • Churches United to Save and Heal
  • El Centro del Inmigrante
  • Immigrant Hope
  • La Fuente
  • La Union
  • Legal Aid Society
  • MinKwon Center for Community Action
  • New York Immigration Coalition
  • New York Interfaith Network for Immigration Reform
  • New Sanctuary Coalition of NYC
  • New York State Immigrant Action Fund
  • New York State Youth Leadership Council
  • New York Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association
  • Saint Mary Catholic Church

PS: Please consider a donation…..and check out some of the media coverage from our August 15th clinic:

Daily News video of our event: http://www.thenyic.org/blog-post/nydailynewsVID/deferredaction

New York Times slideshow: http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2012/08/15/us/IMMIG-11.html

NewYorkOne news story/interview with us: http://www.ny1.com/content/166845/almost-60k-undocumented-new-yorkers-can-apply-for-federal-work-visas

NBC News: http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/08/15/13297578-young-undocumented-immigrants-line-up-for-chance-to-legally-stay-work-in-us-under-new-deferral-program?lite

Albany Times Union slideshow of NYIC's event at St.Mary's Church: http://www.timesunion.com/news/slideshow/Undocumented-immigrants-in-NYC-47613.php#photo-3335708

El Diario front page and coverage: http://www.eldiariony.com/Sonadores_en_NY_inician_camino_a_la_legalidad





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