#Dilley Dispatches: Learning to Fly

Ernie Collette is a Government Benefits and Immigration Attorney at MFY Legal Services. Dilley is half-way between San Antonio and the border at Laredo, Texas.  Transportation for detainees only goes so far as transportation into and out of the center. Apparently inspired by the rugged individualism of the United States in the early 20th Century, the detention center does enough to ensure that families arrive to the San Antonio airport…

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#DilleyDispatches: From Hope to Heartbreak in Forty-Eight Hours

Ernie Collette is a Government Benefits and Immigration Attorney at MFY Legal Services Feature Image Photo Credit: Claire R. Thomas Wednesday, December 14, 2016. I met with a woman and her young daughter who had a signed order in a request to extend their detention to avoid deportation from Dilley, Texas. Based on testimony that they offered, but was previously was unavailable, I was assigned the task to write a Request…

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#DilleyDispatches: Challenging Patriarchy Through Advocacy

By Carlos A. Valenzuela, an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow with the Safe Passage Project. Photo Credit:“No More Violence Against Women.” April, 2011 © lingiik | Flickr Traveling to the South Texas Family Residential Center detention facility in Dilley, Texas has marked my personal and professional life in incredible ways. The detention center currently holds over 1800 women and children; it has capacity for hundreds more women and children who will inevitably…

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School Board Resolutions to Designate Safe Zones

Emma Leheny serves as Senior Counsel for the National Education Association, the nation’s largest professional employee organization. For two decades, Leheny has represented unions, low-wage workers, and recipients of government benefits. Leheny previously served as Vice-Chair of the National Immigration Law Center Board of Directors and as Chief Counsel for the California Teachers Association. Anti-immigrant statements by Trump and his supporters have caused anxiety among school children throughout the country….

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#DilleyDispatches: Broken

By Carlos A. Valenzuela, an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow with the Safe Passage Project; Claire R. Thomas is an attorney with the Safe Passage Project and teaches at New York Law School; Ernie Collette is a Government Benefits and Immigration Attorney at MFY Legal Services; Marilyn E. Alvarado is a first generation college graduate from CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice and paralegal with Safe Passage Project; Michelle Castaneda is a Ph.D….

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#DilleyDispatches: Finding Humanity

By Claire R. Thomas an attorney with the Safe Passage Project and teaches at New York Law School. She and a volunteer team of paralegals, lawyers and social workers have gone to Dilley Texas to provide pro bono representation for women and children in detention. They are sharing their experiences while there with Law@theMargins in a series called #DilleyDispatches Day 4 Another early morning! Most mornings this week, there has been…

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#DilleyDispatches: Luchadoras in Detention

Marilyn E. Alvarado is a first generation college graduate from CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice and paralegal with Safe Passage Project.  I did not know I would end up discovering the true strength and resilience of women in a place where it is supposed to be taken away. Being detained for an unreasonable and inhumane amount of time is one thing, but being shamed for trying to breast…

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#DilleyDispatches: Charlas y Paciencia

By Ernie Collette is a Government Benefits and Immigration Attorney at MFY Legal Services; Carlos A. Valenzuela, an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow with the Safe Passage Project.  Photo Credit: Catholic Immigration Network. Ernie and then Carlos share experiences of their first day.  Waking up to pitch black darkness at 6:40 AM, mist from the dense fog covers the car and blankets the sky as we make the 2-min drive to correctional facility…

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#DilleyDispatches: Welcome to Baby Jail, Holiday Edition

Claire R. Thomas is an attorney and adjunct professor interested in migration, statelessness, human rights, and empowerment for women and girls facing poverty and gender-based violence. Based in New York City, Thomas advocates for immigrant children facing deportation from the United States as an attorney with the Safe Passage Project and teaches at New York Law School. Twas a few weeks before Christmas and all through the trailer, stockings were…

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Dilley. The Return. With Friends

By Carlos A. Valenzuela, an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow with the Safe Passage Project; Claire R. Thomas is an attorney with the Safe Passage Project and teaches at New York Law School; Ernie Collette is a Government Benefits and Immigration Attorney at MFY Legal Services; Marilyn E. Alvarado is a first generation college graduate from CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice and paralegal with Safe Passage Project; Michelle Castaneda is a Ph.D….

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