Cory Gardner Must Introduce the Dream and Promise Act
Posted: March 9, 2014
June 15th, 2020 marks 8 years since DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) was first created after undocumented leaders in Colorado and across the US demanded relief from deportation. DACA has allowed hundreds of thousands of recipients to remain home in the US. Eight years later we are nowhere nearer to having a concrete answer […]Take Action
Posted: March 3, 2011
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Creating a Statewide Legal Defense Fund will help keep Colorado families together by providing a lawyer for people facing detention or deportation who couldn’t otherwise afford one.
Immigration detention is the only legal procedure in the nation where someone can be detained without the right to a government-funded lawyer. As a result, many people in deportation proceedings have valid legal claims to remain in the United States, but are deported anyway because they lack the legal expertise to effectively argue their cases. Legal defense is also critical to addressing Anti-Black racism in immigration court and the detention to deportation pipeline, since Black immigrants are over four times as likely as non-Black immigrants to face detention or deportation on criminal grounds.
70% of immigrants detained at the GEO immigration detention center in Aurora, CO do not have a lawyer
Immigrants with legal representation are 3.5 times more likely to be released from detention on bond
Immigrants with legal representation are 10 times more likely to win their cases
Universal representation in immigration court should be a national mandate. As we continue to push for equity, individual cities and states across the nation have risen to stand up for the immigrants in their communities.
Five states have already created statewide immigration legal defense funds: Oregon, New York, Illinois, New Jersey, and California
In 2017, in the wake of a growing wave of national anti-immigrant sentiment and policies, advocates and leaders in the Denver metro area worked to create the Denver Immigrant Legal Services Fund (DILSF) to provide free, quality legal services for Denver residents in immigration proceedings through local non-profits. With the Denver program, Colorado has taken a step towards leading the national movement for a “public defender” system for immigrants.
Now, our Campaign for Universal Representation is taking the next step by championing a bill to create a Colorado statewide legal defense fund! This bill will create a fund similar to the Denver Immigrant Legal Services Fund (DILSF). Through the statewide fund, Coloradans with a deportation case would qualify to receive a free lawyer if they cannot afford one. As the fund grows, more and more Colorado immigrants will be able to face detention and deportation with crucial access to legal representation.