SILVER SPRING, Maryland — Starting this week, lawyers at major law firms across the country will begin representing immigrants detained by ICE’s raids of poultry plants and facilities, in bond cases. It is estimated that several hundred immigrants remain in detention. Of that, nearly 100 immigrant workers arrested in the raids have requested pro bono legal representation for their bond applications and hearings.
The lawyers, who will be working on the bond cases pro bono, are organized by the Lawyers for Good Government Foundation’s Project Corazon and come from major U.S.-based law firms, including Kirkland & Ellis; Kilpatrick Townsend; and Wilkie Farr and Gallagher. The lawyers will work closely with the Catholic Legal Immigration Network Inc., which will provide training, mentoring and supervision on the cases.
“The people we’re trying to help have been taken from their families and are suffering in isolated detention centers. They desperately need legal counsel,” explained Traci Feit Love, Executive Director of the Lawyers for Good Government Foundation and Project Corazon. “We are proud to partner with CLINIC and our coalition of large law firms to help make sure that families are reunited and justice is done.”
“Lawyers at big firms may spend most of their days working on major corporate matters, but they often still maintain a real interest in helping the most vulnerable members of our communities to have access to the due process to which they are entitled by law.” said Jacqueline Haberfeld, New York Pro Bono Counsel, Kirkland & Ellis LLP. “Working on this Remote Bond Project through Project Corazon means that these skilled attorneys all over the country are able to undertake meaningful and impactful legal work with appropriate infrastructure provided by Lawyers for Good Government, paired with training, mentorship, and expertise provided by some of the best immigration attorneys in the country through Project Corazon’s partnership with CLINIC.”
“Immigration is one of the most complicated areas of U.S. law,” said Michelle Mendez, director of CLINIC’s Defending Vulnerable Populations program. “CLINIC is heartened to see lawyers volunteering their time. We are ready to train and mentor them to help ensure pro-bono partners are equipped to navigate the law’s complexities.”
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Project Corazon, run by the Lawyers for Good Government Foundation in partnership with nearly 50 top law firms, was created to help reunite families separated by the Trump Administration's inhumane "zero-tolerance" policy. Since the launch of Project Corazon, the Lawyers for Good Government Foundation has expanded its mission, mobilizing thousands of lawyers to defend the rights of immigrants and their families.