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Legal Initiatives - Summer 2015 Newsletter



Taking Action on TPS for the Nepali Community

On July 12th the NYIC trained Nepali community members to become immigration navigators and assist New York Nepalis with their applications for Temporary Protected Status. Nepal was designated for TPS by the Department of Homeland Security on June 24th, 2015 after an advocacy campaign that the NYIC was actively involved in. These immigration navigators now help community members get ready to meet with lawyers by identifying and collecting the appropriate documentation. In conjunction with the navigators’ work, the NYIC helped coordinate weekly legal clinics in the Adhikaar offices for individuals applying for TPS, and participated in a large-scale event at Newtown High School in Elmhurst, NY on 8/1 where nearly 150 Nepali community members were served. 


 PHOTO: August TPS application clinic and resource fair at Newtown High School (Credit: Anuz Thapa, Voices of NY)

Training for Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) accreditation

The NYIC offered a summer 40-hour training in June in NYC toward BIA recognition and accreditation, the third this year. The training was attended by lawyers and nonprofit staff representing a broad cross-section of geographic locations from New Jersey to Georgia to Washington State. A total of 40 participants took the course, which culminated with a visit to the local USCIS field office. In the spring, the NYIC offered our first 40-hour BIA accreditation and recognition training in Buffalo, NY, to build capacity among Upstate and Western New York nonprofit organizations. A total of 23 participants took the course, which culminated with a visit to the local USCIS field office. For more information on BIA recognition and accreditation, click HERE.

 PHOTO: June BIA training in Buffalo 

Long Island Youth Fairs to Assist Unaccompanied Minors

On June 14th, the NYIC began a series of Long Island Youth Fairs aimed at meeting the needs of the large, recently-arrived unaccompanied minor population. On June 14th, the first of these Long Island Youth Fairs took place at St. Brigid's Church in Westbury, Long Island. Many church parishioners and community members attended. We were able to offer them a brief legal screening, as well as access to the social service agencies in attendance.

Our second Youth Fair occurred on July 25, in partnership with CARECEN-NY in Hempstead, Long Island. Volunteer and pro bono attorneys provided assistance to approximately 14 youth to prepare their family court filings, so that they might qualify for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status.

This novel clinical model will be replicated in other areas of Long Island throughout the rest of the year to varying degrees of scale and service. In doing so, the NYIC hopes to bring legal and social services to as many of the region's children as possible.


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