As deportations increase, immigrants living in the state of New York will have access to legal aid in efforts to stay in the country. Thanks to the Vera Institute of Justice and New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP), immigrants with limited finances will now have access to an attorney in all immigration hearings. This makes New York the first state to provide their undocumented population with lawyers.
“All New Yorkers deserve to have a fair shot in court, and this funding will help thousands of immigrant families receive due process and the chance to remain together,” Oren Root, of Vera, said in a statement.
Immigrants with no attorney have a three percent chance of avoiding deportation, but with an attorney, their odds increase up to 1000 percent, according to Vera.
— Vera Institute (@verainstitute) April 7, 2017
As CBS reported, New York’s 2017-2018 budget set aside $4 million in funds for the NYIFUP. Since it’s creation in 2013, the NYIFUP has provided counsel for immigrants facing deportation around New York City, but the new budget increase will ensure that indigent immigrants all over the state are now covered.
Supervising Immigration Attorney, Brooklyn Defender Services Andrea Saenz told Vera:
With this funding, New York has sent a powerful message and set the standard for the rest of the nation. No person should face detention and deportation alone, without legal advice or counsel through a frightening process in which a person’s family or even her life may be at stake. We congratulate the New York State leaders who have provided a basic level of due process that will keep more New York families together.
To find out more, read the full press release at the Vera Institute of Justice.