Center for Citizenship and Immigrant Communities | Page 8 | CLINIC

Center for Citizenship and Immigrant Communities

Search by a particular word or phrase.
Search by a particular blog tag.
 
 
LawLogix Logo

 

LawLogix Edge is the exclusive provider of integrated immigration forms, billing, and case management software to CLINIC and its affiliates.

 
 
 

 

Does your nonprofit agency want to develop a legal immigration program, but lack attorneys on staff or the money to hire them?

 
 

This manual describes best practices used by many of the country's most experienced nonprofit immigration programs and managers.

 
 
 

This toolkit is intended to facilitate the process of designing and/or improving the case management system in your immigration program.  In a legal immigration context, case management system consists of: policies and procedures; forms; a database; and files used by legal representatives in a standardized manner for the purposes of delivering professional services and avoiding errors that can result in malpractice and liability.

 
 

Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC) is pleased to announce the establishment of an innovative program to create capacity for high quality charitable legal immigration services in the southeastern United States. The initiative will build a stronger community of expert service providers in largely underserved states where the population of at-risk immigrants is on the rise.

Blog tags: 
Leya Speasmaker

As Citizenship Week comes to a close, it is worthwhile to remember that naturalization is but one step on the pathway to the larger goal of immigrant integration.  Immigrant integration is the creation of something new in the places where we live – a more inclusive community that reflects the needs and wants of all its residents. Immigrant integration takes deliberate and on-going work by both the receiving community and the newcomers, and it requires a community to grow and change as it stretches to allow everyone a chance to access services, make an impact, and participate actively.

 
Tessa W. McKenzie

On Constitution and Citizenship Day, we honor, not only the newcomers who have and will naturalize, but also the champions who guide them through complex immigration processes and embark on innovative ways to overcome obstacles to immigrant integration.

Woman working at computer with calculator
Leya Speasmaker

During the tax season, there are many ways for immigration legal service programs to help clients complete this important task, as well as avoid falling victim to scams. Visit CLINIC’s new Center for Immigrant Integration for resources on tax assistance preparation and other ways to encourage immigrant integration in your community.

Nathaly Perez

Adonia R. Simpson, Esq. is readying Catholic Charities of Baltimore, Maryland to serve a rapid increase in the number of immigrants.  This is a result of President Obama’s executive actions announced on November 20 offering administrative relief to an estimated four million immigrants.

Martin Gauto

The Inland Empire region of Southern California, east of Los Angeles, is home to over one million foreign-born persons. Comprised of Riverside and San Bernardino counties, the Inland Empire (or the “The IE” as it’s known) has a severe shortage of low-cost, professional immigration legal service providers. 

 
 

Are you interested in providing more comprehensive citizenship and immigrant integration services? Join us for this free webinar on citizenship education programs. We discuss how and why legal service providers are well-positioned to offer citizenship classes; present key components of a successful citizenship education program; provide resources and next steps for implementing a program; and hear from a local affiliate with recent experience in starting a citizenship education program.

 
 
 

A strong case management system is key to a healthy immigration legal program. A strong case management system helps ensure consistency, uniformity, and a high quality of work. It balances the interests of the client in getting the best and speediest representation with those of the agency in providing services efficiently. Join us for Part II of this series. It will focus on case file organization standards, case notes standards, a filing system, case closing procedures, and a tickler system to ensure important deadlines are not missed.

 
 
 

A naturalization group application workshop is a one-day community event that brings professionals and trained volunteers together to assist Lawful Permanent Residents in completing the Application for Naturalization (N-400). The workshop is an essential tool for efficiently and effectively providing naturalization assistance to large numbers of people. The success of the workshop model depends on careful planning, thorough training of staff and volunteers, and high quality services. The purpose of this toolkit is to help charitable immigration programs achieve a successful workshop.

 
 
 

There are several ways to establish a partnership and many tools to use that can help organize and manage the operations. This toolkit includes sample materials for managing a partnership, guidelines for working within a partnership, and tips on what to look for in a potential partner.

 
 
 

This guide is designed to give service providers the tools and information needed to address the barriers to resettlement and integration faced by asylees and to better assist their clients.  It contains crucial and timely information about the benefits and services for which asylees are eligible, including job placement assistance, English language classes, health screening, temporary cash and medical assistance, social security cards, employment authorization cards, adjustment of status, I-94s, travel authorization, petitioning for immediate relatives, and federal student financial aid.

 
 
 

Low English language proficiency impacts employee productivity, safety, and retention. Federal and state governments provide only a fraction of the funding needed for English language classes, and businesses have both the space and the financial means to offer this benefit to their Limited English Proficient workers. CLINIC offers the following resource to programs interested in pursuing partnerships with local employers willing to offer English language classes to their employees.  The Creating a Workplace ELL Program toolkit includes program planning documents, examples of currently operating workplace ELL programs, sample marketing materials, and other resources to assist in implementing a workplace ELL program. 

 
 
 

In recent years, more than 24,000 people from over 100 nations have been granted asylum in the United States. Asylees have often suffered from persecution in their country of origin, forced migration, detention in the United States, and the uncertainty of the asylum adjudication process. Most confront systemic and bureaucratic barriers to resettlement and integration, and need well-coordinated and prompt social services to ease their transition.

 
 
 

Many tasks in an immigration legal services program can be completed by volunteers. Using volunteers when possible frees up staff time that can be devoted to offering more services to clients. This toolkit contains helpful information on how best to use volunteers in your program, how to recruit and retain volunteers, and how to incorporate them into your program’s plan for the passage of Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Sample forms are included as well as sample volunteer job descriptions.

 
 
 

Held on May 6, 2013.

 
 
 

This webinar training focuses on how to obtain a fee waiver for a naturalization applicant who is unable to pay the USCIS application fee. We discuss the fee waiver eligibility criteria, the application process with the Form I-912, and the documentation requirements. We also discuss problems or pitfalls that may arise and how to avoid these, as well as special considerations for completing fee waiver applications at naturalization group processing workshops.

 
 
 

Early planning and preparation for CIR implementation includes budgeting and resource development.  This webinar introduces resources to help CLINIC affiliates in these processes.  Included in the webinar is a newly-released CIR Preparation Checklist for program directors to guide their planning, webinar slides on budgeting decisions and several resource development tools including a proposal template, budget narrative and work plan to seek external funding.

 
 
 

Join us for CLINIC’s kick-off webinar for Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR) preparation in 2013, the first in a series. This free webinar training covers the application process and requirements for Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) recognition and accreditation. We also discuss the latest BIA developments, including the new FAQ sheet released by the BIA, training requirements for staff, and issues the BIA is analyzing before submitting proposed changes to recognition and accreditation regulations.

 
 
 
 
 
 

The purpose of the webinar is to educate charitable immigration legal staff on the unique differences of planning and implementing a large, "mega" group application workshop for naturalization and deferred action.

Click here for the webinar slides.

Held on September 12, 2012.

 
 
 

The purpose of the webinar is to educate charitable immigration legal staff on the unique differences of planning and implementing a large, "mega" group application workshop for naturalization and deferred action. Held on September 12, 2012.

 
 
 

USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas shared additional details on the June 15th Deferred Action policy memorandum on a Stakeholder Teleconference.  All the new details can be found on the USCIS website at: www.uscis.gov/childhoodarrivals.  Under this new administration policy, DHS will be able to grant deferred action to certain qualifying young people, often known as DREAMers, who have fulfilled age, residency, and educational or military requirements.

 
 

Citizenship for Elders is a unique handbook for teachers and administrators on creating and managing a citizenship program for the older learner. This handbook brings together the observations and insights of teachers from across the country on older learners from a wide range of cultures.

 
 
 

April 24, 2012

Join us for Part 4 in a four part series for a presentation of tech innovations within the CLINIC network. We'll learn about CitizenshipWorks, a program designed to assist local programs in helping clients naturalize. We'll also learn from several network affiliates about innovative ways they've used technology in their offices and how it has impacted the way they reach the public. Leya Speasmaker, Field Support Coordinator in CLINIC's Washington DC office moderates the discussion.

 
 
 

Join us for Part 3 in a four part series for a conversation about case management software and other database capabilities. Topics will include why to use case management software, how to choose a software package, and how best to use software in your daily work. Jack Holmgren, a Field Support Coordinator in CLINIC's San Francisco office, will moderate the discussion.

 
 
 

Join us for Part 2 in a four part series as we talk about how best to use social media and outreach tech tools to increase the visibility of your program on the internet.  We'll compare the current options such as blogging, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter and examine the pluses and minuses of using each one.  We'll also talk about sources for tech support, particularly for non-profits.

Held on February 28, 2012.

 
 
 

Join us for Part 1 in a four part series as we explore quick and easy tech upgrades your program can make to improve communication and service to the community . We'll talk about technological changes coming down the pike from USCIS and why it is important to get a jump start on planning for those today. We will also hear from several members of CLINIC staff give tips on how best to access technology used by our organization to better serve our network. Leya Speasmaker, Field Support Coordinator in CLINIC's Washington D.C.

 
 

Citizenship for Elders is a unique handbook for teachers and administrators on creating and managing a citizenship program for the older learner.  This handbook brings together the observations and insights of teachers from across the country on older learners from a wide range of cultures.  It is based on a nationwide survey of 200 programs.  It identifies the issues in teaching elders and makes recommendations for instruction and program design.  The recommendations are practice-based, with a focus on innovative and promising practices.  The suggestions on learning activities, cu

 
 
 

Looking for ideas to promote and encourage immigrant integration within your community? CLINIC offers this 6 part series that spotlights immigrant integration initiatives across our network. Learn the definition of immigrant integration, its importance for our network and nation, and how it can be promoted locally. Featured programs encourage relationships between the receiving community and immigrants, give elderly refugees a place to use skills gained in their home countries, and connect asylees with available resources.

 
 
 

This toolkit contains a variety of resources collected and produced through CLINIC’s citizenship projects.  It is designed to assist agencies providing citizenship services and civic participation opportunities for the most vulnerable applicants.

 
 
 
 
 
 

This webinar discusses workshop models and approaches; planning for a workshop; and stages of the workshop event. Held on November 17, 2011.

 
 
 

Held on November 11, 2011.

How do you ensure your case management systems are working effectively? How do you ensure the quality of your immigration work before it is filed? How can you ensure your program is providing quality immigration services?  In this 90 minute webinar, we will discuss the importance of case management and legal supervision in your immigration program. 

 
 
 

Held on September 12, 2011. This webinar discusses several key strategies for helping vulnerable applicants overcome barriers in the naturalization process. Topics include disability waivers, reasonable accommodations for applicants with disabilities, due consideration on the citizenship test, and fee waivers for low-income applicants. The presenters are Laura Burdick, Naturalization Project Coordinator, CLINIC; Alla Shagalova, Associate Director, Immigration Services, Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society; and Amy Tenney, Immigration Legal Services Staff Attorney, World Relief. 

 

Unaccompanied Children

Who are these children, and how did they get here?

Children find themselves unaccompanied and vulnerable in the U.S. for many reasons. Some are victims of human traffickers, others flee neglect or abuse, and still others are sent to work to help support their families. What these children share in common is that, without your representation, they have nobody to help them understand their immigration proceedings or assert their legal rights.

Jorge* fled Honduras because gangs were targeting his family.  On two separate occasions, his siblings were shot at by gang members.  His brother and sister were each beaten several times causing them to be placed in comas. They have since recovered but another brother was killed by the gang. Jorge was beaten brutally by gang members with a gun and suffered a concussion.  While police investigated, no one was arrested. He is very scared of living in Honduras.  The gang has threatened to make him disappear, kidnap him, and kill him. 

***

Beke* fled to the United States after his brother and father, a police officer, were killed by an extremist group. Alone, he tried to refuse the group’s recruitment of him as a soldier. He wanted to go to school. He moved frequently because of ongoing conflict based on religion and clan membership. At 17, he’s afraid to return to Somolia because of the country’s ongoing violence and civil war. He also does not have any family there since his father and sibling were killed. He does not know the whereabouts of his mother.

***

 Originally from El Salvador, Alvita* has lived in four different homes and suffered abuse by each caretaker.  Her mother left her with her paternal grandfather when she was 3 years old.  Her grandfather, an alcoholic, was abusive and often hit her. At the age of six she was attacked by a family friend. Afraid to tell her mother, Alvita ran away and lived on the streets for about a month before she went to live with her maternal grandparents. Things were not much better there and soon she was sent to live with her aunt and eight cousins. They were also abusive, often fight and hit her and steal any food and gifts that her mother sent her from the U.S.  The minor is afraid to return to El Salvador and will not live with any of her family because they all hurt her in the past.  She is also afraid of the gangs because they kill children.

*names have been changed to protect the identity of minors.

New Member Agency

CLINIC has accepted and welcomes a new member agency, Catholic Worker of Akron, located at St. Bernard-St. Mary Parish, Akron, Ohio. Ada L. Gelpi is the director of the Catholic Worker of Akron Immigration Program that is also staffed by Luz A. Cardenas.  The program is located at 1096 S. Main Street, Akron, OH.

 
 
Citizenship test preparation and quality legal services go hand in hand in assisting an immigrant along the path to citizenship. A prospective bill for comprehensive immigration reform will most likely bring changes in legal and language requirements for citizenship. It is the job of all legal service providers and teaching professionals working with the foreign born to anticipate these requirements and prepare clients in advance. The Creating a Citizenship Program Preparation Toolkit will be helpful to anyone seeking ways to better serve the foreign born as they prepare to naturalize.
 
 

The Need for Charitable Legal Immigration Services

Current capacity does not meet current demands for low-cost legal representation in immigration matters. For instance, immigrants eligible and soon-to-be eligible to naturalize as U.S. citizens have less income, education, and English language ability than immigrants who naturalized in previous decades.

 
 
 

CLINIC Capacity Building staff address the top ten most frequent challenges facing immigration legal service programs across the nation. Topics include how to develop a fee schedule, how to minimize risk, and how to create an efficient and effective case management system. Resources will be provided for each issue, and staff will provide tips for tackling these common challenges.  

Leya Speasmaker and Helen Chen are the presenters for this webinar.

Held March 3, 2011.

 
 
 

A good case management database contains both immigration forms and client-specific information.  The database may be software for stand-alone or networked computers or it may be web-based with the server off-site.  Either way, the choice and utilization of a database is an important investment for your immigration program.  In addition to completing forms, the database helps staff manage the caseload and facilitates the writing of data-rich reports and funding proposals.

 
 
 

The design and implementation of immigration case management systems will vary among immigration programs since every program is different.  However, a program whose case management system works for staff members and meets the needs of clients are the most effective.

 
 
 

Held Nov. 16, 2010

Due to an increasing need for quality English as a Second Language (ESL) and Citizenship Test Preparation classes, many community-based organizations are interested in starting their own language learning programs. Combining CLINIC’s key components for program management and Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages’ (TESOL) Standards for Adult Education ESL Programs, this Webinar will provide a foundation for interested organizations to plan and implement a language learning program. Instructor: Leya Speasmaker.

 
 
 

Nominal fees for immigration legal services are a core source of funding to start and sustain charitable programs.  By charging nominal fees you can retain a great deal of control over the financial viability of your program.  Conversely, to not charge fees is to put your program at risk of closing or drastic downsizing.

 
 
 

Language Access: Effectively Serving Limited- and Non-English Speakers

This is part 1 of a 3-part series on language access.

 
 
 

How do you set up intake? Which cases should you accept for representation? What is a client services agreement? How do you track deadlines and cases? What goes into a case file? What are your responsibilities when you close a case?

 
 
 

CLINIC trainer Jack Holmgren along with Robert Yates, director of Immigration Legal Services of Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County present on fees and revenues.

Held June 2010.

 
 
 
The manual, Preparing for Comprehensive Immigration Reform: An Earned Pathway to Citizenship and Beyond offers recommendations from “veterans” of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA).
 
 
 

Nonprofit immigration legal programs have a range of staffing options. Programs may employ licensed attorneys, law graduates, fully accredited representatives, partially accredited representatives, non-accredited immigration counselors, support staff, interns and volunteers. In this third of a seven part webinar series on immigration program management, the presenter will explore how to optimize your program's performance with careful staffing.

 
 
 

While staff is the heart of an immigration program, several other resources are required to keep a program functioning. These include: physical space, computers, software, law library materials, and malpractice insurance.  In this second of a seven-part webinar series on immigration program management, the presenter will discuss the different resources needed to support an immigration legal services program.

 
 
 

While staff is the heart of an immigration program, several other resources are required to keep a program functioning. These include: physical space, computers, software, law library materials, and malpractice insurance.  In this second of a seven-part webinar series on immigration program management, the presenter will discuss the different resources needed to support an immigration legal services program.

 
 
 

This webinar was presented by CLINIC's Center for Citizenship and Immigrant Communities.

Presenters: Jeff Chenoweth, director of CLINIC's Center for Citizenship and Immigrant Communities and Rose Alma Senatore, executive director, Catholic Charities of Hartford, CT.

This webinar discusses ways to recruit more leaders and financial donors in order to grow and sustain charitable legal immigration services for the challenges of today and a new environment for tomorrow.

Held Jan. 13, 2010.

 
 
 

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has dramatically stepped up enforcement in the interior of the country. DHS agents of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Division are arresting immigrants at their homes, workplaces and on the streets in communities all across the country.

 
 
 

The translations listed here were completed by USCIS and community organizations throughout the country. For translations completed by community organizations, the organization's contact information is included on the translation.

 
 
 

IMMIGRANT WORKERS’ RIGHTS

All workers, including documented and undocumented immigrant workers, are protected by many U.S. employment and labor laws. Rights that may apply to workers depending upon the circumstances include:

Right to be paid. In most instances, workers have the right to be paid minimum wage ($5.15 an hour) and to receive overtime pay for work over 40 hours a week. If workers do not receive all of the wages for the time they actually worked, they can take action to recover those wages.

 
 

Refugees and immigrants strongly desire U.S. citizenship. Yet, many of them, especially those who are elderly, disabled, low-income, low-literate, and limited English proficient, face serious challenges in the naturalization process. These challenges can impede their integration and their civic participation in U.S. society.