November 10th, 2013 | Admin
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For children who have experienced abandonment, neglect, coercion, or exile and need to seek citizenship status in the United States, Children’s Voice International will provide administrative support of the application process by coordinating the collection of documents, paying for application fees, and providing introductions to immigration attorneys.
Children’s Voice International provides detained migrant children with desperately-needed access to legal counsel while they are held at one of the makeshift family detention centers that are located in remote areas along the U.S.-Mexico border. The overwhelming majority of these children are currently forced to navigate a complex process that will determine whether they have a right to remain in the United States after fleeing horrific violence in Central America – literally, a matter of life-or-death – without the benefit of an attorney…despite having the right to counsel. The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) is organizing teams of volunteer attorneys who are willing to travel at their own expense to Artesia, New Mexico, to help make a dent in this humanitarian crisis by providing triage legal services to mothers and children detained at the family residential detention facility. Children’s Voice has a unique opportunity to sponsor attorneys to travel to Artesia, New Mexico to represent children who are otherwise at severe risk of forgoing their legal rights and being returned to the countries they risked their lives to escape.
The sponsored attorneys can be expected to write a daily blog for Children’s Voice highlighting the needs and experiences of the children at the Artesia facility, the struggles and accomplishments of the attorneys representing children, and a reflection on the difference that legal representation has made in the lives of children. The attorney can also look for potential cases for Children’s Voice to take on in a longer-term capacity, including through provision of non-legal services and support. The experiences can be used to showcase Children’s Voice’s commitment to vulnerable immigrant children and to possibly follow some of these children through their futures in the United States (among those who are able to remain here).