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AsylumConnect and Student Clinic for Immigrant Justice Announce Partnership
AsylumConnect and Student Clinic for Immigrant Justice (SCIJ) are joining forces to help ensure LGBTQ+ asylum seekers have access to legitimate pro bono legal support and other critical services in Massachusetts and beyond.
AsylumConnect provides the world’s first tech resource platform designed to facilitate the safe navigation of those fleeing persecution due to their sexual orientation or gender identity. AsylumConnect’s free technology connects users across America to verified LGBTQ+ affirming and immigrant friendly legal, medical, mental health and social services in seconds, 24/7.
SCIJ trains college students to provide free legal representation to asylum seekers and to organize for immigrant justice. SCIJ’s legal services include both remote and direct casework. All of SCIJ’s legal services are provided by DOJ Accredited students and/or overseen by a supervising attorney or DOJ Accredited Representative. SCIJ also engages students in court watching and immigrant accompaniment. SCIJ’s community organizing and advocacy program engages students in developing community organizing strategies with clients and local immigrant communities to campaign for issues important to them.
“We are excited to help advance SCIJ’s critical mission of expanding access to free legal representation for all asylum seekers in desperate need. Together, we can ensure LGBTQ+ asylum seekers have easy access to the legal and other affirming services necessary for safe resettlement in America.” – Katie Sgarro, AsylumConnect Co-Founder and Executive Director
“AsylumConnect’s commitment to empowering LGBTQ+ asylum seekers through key resources and information helps alleviate the stress and trauma that comes with fleeing to a new country. We look forward to working together to ensure no one must face the immigration process alone and creating a safe and supportive environment for LGBTQ+ asylum seekers.” – Jonathan Goldman, SCIJ Founder and Executive Director
Currently, there are over 1 million pending cases backlogged in U.S. immigration court. About ½ of these are asylum cases. When an asylum seeker lacks legal representation, U.S. immigration courts deny 90% of cases. By working together alongside other legal partners, AsylumConnect and SCIJ hope to mitigate this problem for asylum seekers fleeing persecution. SCIJ will also gain access to AsylumConnect’s free technology to help efficiently gather verified medical, mental health and social service referrals for LGBTQ+ clients.