Monday, April 8, 2013

Counsel for Immigrants


Counsel for Immigrants

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To the Editor:
Immigrant Detainees and the Right to Counsel” (news analysis, Sunday Review, March 31) rightly highlights the injustice of not providing those detained in civil immigration proceedings with access to counsel. This particularly affects the most vulnerable, including sex trafficking victims.
It is critical that all people in immigration proceedings have representation, not simply those who are detained.
Victims of domestic violence, sex trafficking and female genital mutilation face the possibility of severe harm and possible murder upon return to their home countries, whether or not they are detained while awaiting a hearing.
It is unconscionable that the United States deports 400,000 noncitizens a year without any guarantee of access to counsel and any way of knowing what harm awaits these noncitizens once they leave the United States.
Director, Sanctuary for Families
New York, April 1, 2013

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