HIPGive Crowdfunder: Providing free or low-cost legal services to child migrants
Providing legal representation for minors is complex – it requires expertise in state family law and federal immigration law, and for the attorney to be barred in the state where the minor lives. It is also expensive because these cases are labor intensive.
According to the Office of Refugee Resettlement, 85% of all children seeking refuge (~60,000 in 2014) will be placed with relatives. 15% of all of these children will be placed in Maryland, Virginia or the District of Columbia.
The vast majority of these children are seeking legal assistance. Ayuda legal services will provide free or low-cost legal services to child migrants, giving them the opportunity to build secure and successful futures in this country.
However, the availability of their services is limited due to their capacity; additional funding for cases for migrant children will allow them to serve (55-110) more children a year who have this desperate need.
Many children are eligible for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS). The funds collected for this project will cover or partially cover the legal fees for these cases so that more children have access to legal services. Last year, 3 out of 5 kids went to court without a lawyer. Kids who go without a lawyer are 3 times as likely to be ordered to be deported than those whom have legal representation.
The campaign’s goal is $25,000.
“We envision a community where all immigrants overcome obstacles in order to succeed and thrive in the United States. We realize our vision by advocating for low-income immigrants through direct legal, social and language services, training and outreach in the Washington DC metropolitan area” ~ Ayuda’s Mission Statement