NEW YORK, July 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Immigrant Justice Corps (IJC), the country's first fellowship program dedicated to meeting immigrants' need for high-quality legal assistance, announced today its seventh class of Community Fellows. This select group of 12 talented and promising recent college graduates will, over the course of a two-year intensive fellowship, provide individualized legal screening and representation in immigration benefits applications to underserved immigrant communities, serving as first responders to the IJC program.
The 2020 Community Fellows come to IJC with extensive experience in immigration-related internships, jobs, volunteerism, and their own unique personal backgrounds. All of the new Fellows are bilingual, spanning fluency in Spanish, Arabic, Haitian Creole, French, and Mandarin. Community Fellows become Department of Justice Accredited Representatives, which allows them to represent clients before USCIS.
"This seventh class of Community Fellows is truly exceptional in their dedication and passion for ensuring justice for immigrant communities. With IJC's support and training they will bring much-need quality counsel to the communities they serve," said IJC's founder, Robert A. Katzmann, Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Since 2014, IJC Community Fellows have filed more than 6,062 fee waiver applications and saved low-income clients nearly $4 million dollars in fees and have won 95% of cases closed.
Immigrant Justice Corps' Executive Director Jojo Annobil said, "At a time when immigrants are under attack, IJC is extremely fortunate to welcome another cohort of talented Community Fellows who bring lived experiences, cultural and linguistic competence, and resiliency to the fight for immigrant rights."
For the first time, three Community Fellows will join the Capital Area Immigrants' Rights Coalition (CAIR) as part of a joint-partnership Access to Counsel Initiative, a project dedicated to substantially closing the representation gap for detained immigrants in Prince George's County, Maryland.
This new class will join the 2019 class of 14 Community Fellows already in the field.
The full list of 2020 Community Fellows is as follows:
University of Michigan
Arab American Association of New York (AAANY)
University of California, Davis
Brooklyn Public Library
Chinese-American Planning Association
Susan Lucas Baca
University of California, Berkeley
Lorena Ortega Guerrero
Moises Rodriguez Cruz
The University of Chicago
Part of the Solution (POTS)
Franklin and Marshall College
New York Public Library
René J. Valenzuela
Queens Public Library
John Jay College of Criminal Justice
Long Island Project
About IJC Founded in 2014, Immigrant Justice Corps (IJC) identifies promising lawyers and advocates passionate about immigration, places them with organizations where they can make the greatest difference and supports them with training and expert insights as they directly assist immigrants in need.
To date, more than 200 IJC Fellows have provided representation in over 33,300 legal matters and assisted more than 75,000 low-income immigrants and their families with a success rate of 92 percent on cases completed. There are currently 82 Fellows serving in 11 states and 33 cities.