News Story (New York)
Raul A. Reyes
March 23, 2015
Link to story
Tags: Courts, Immigration Process, Pro Bono
Organizations mentioned/involved: Kids in Need of Defense (KIND), Legal Aid Society (New York City), Safe Passage Project (NY)
A young woman in jeans shyly approaches a volunteer who asks, “Tienes un abogado?” (Do you have a lawyer?) Clutching a sheaf of documents, the teen shakes her head no.
Every weekday, scenes like this play out in New York’s “priority dockets,” the immigration courts that handle cases of unaccompanied children who arrived at the U.S./Mexico border last summer. The priority dockets (also known as “surge dockets”) were announced in July, and began processing unaccompanied children in August. Since then, New York social service providers and volunteer lawyers have worked to ensure that the needs of these unaccompanied children are met.