Often the last line of defense when federal, state, or local governments attack the rights and wellbeing of immigrants and other community members, litigation can be a powerful tool in the hands of immigrant justice advocates. Over the years, key victories for immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers have been achieved through litigation, such as blocking anti-immigrant policies that would limit access to asylum at the southern border, restrict certain immigrants from the official census count, and turn the public charge standard into a wealth test.
At the same time, lawsuits brought by those that seek to stifle these advancements have also proven effective, such as when Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA), a program which would have given over 3.5 million undocumented immigrants temporary work authorization and protection from deportation, was struck down by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals before it was even allowed to begin.
It is clear that the courts play a central role in shaping the realities and experiences of immigrant and refugee communities, and it is critical to assess whether the immigrant justice movement is fully equipped to leverage the court’s power. In this session, participants will hear from three different nonprofit partners to gain deeper insight into the intersection of law and immigrant justice, the role of litigation in advancing a broader social and racial justice agenda, and will explore concrete ways philanthropy can invest in litigation strategies to advance the interests of immigrant communities.
- Iván Espinoza-Madrigal, Executive Director, Lawyers for Civil Rights (LCR)
- Shalyn Fluharty, Executive Director, Americans for Immigrant Justice (AI Justice)
- Daniel Melo, Senior Attorney, Immigration Impact Lab at Capital Area Immigrants' Rights Coalition (CAIR)
Register by 5pm PT on Wednesday, August 23rd.