Una carta abierta a mi comunidad Latinx. De Diana Mateo

Una carta abierta a mi comunidad Latinx.  De Diana Mateo ¡Hola, amigos! Soy una de las paralegales de BC, Diana. Como una Latina profesional de inmigración, quería compartir algunas ideas con nuestros amigos y clientes de BC sobre algunos problemas preocupantes que he visto en nuestra comunidad latina, y sobre formas en que podemos ser mejores aliados para nuestros hermanos Negros. Las muertes de George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery y Breonna Taylor son actos de asesinato horribles, y es parte de nuestra responsabilidad como inmigrantes de defender a nuestros hermanos Negros contra el genocidio de ellos en los Estados Unidos de la misma manera que nos enfrentamos al genocidio en la frontera.

An Open Letter to my Non-Black Latinx Community

An Open Letter to my Non-Black Latinx Community This is a special blog post by our Paralegal Diana Mateo, who has been inspired to write by the Black Lives Matter movement  to speak out about anti-blackness in the Latino community.  A version in Spanish is available here. Hi friends, this is Benach Collopy paralegal Diana. As a Latina immigration professional, I want to share some thoughts with our BC friends and clients on some troubling issues I’ve seen in our non-Black Latinx community and on ways we can be better allies to our Black siblings.

New Rule on Asylum at Southern Border Violates Letter and Spirit of Asylum Law

The law as passed by Congress is very clear as to who may seek asylum in the United States.  Immigration & Nationality Act Section 208 states: Any alien who is physically present in the United States or who arrives in the United States (whether or not at a designated port of arrival and including an alien who is brought to the United States after having been interdicted in international or United States waters), irrespective of such alien’s status, may apply for asylum in accordance with this section or, where applicable section 235(b).

Sessions Guts Asylum Protections

Sessions Guts Asylum Protections It’s another rough day to be an immigration attorney in America. Yesterday, a decision was issued that seriously undermines the ability of immigrants to seek asylum in this country. The administration is continuing its war against immigrants, building its invisible wall to complement the one they want to put on the border and finding new ways to keep immigrants from coming here or from obtaining protections. A crazy thing about our immigration system it is that the Immigration Courts are entirely under the control of the Department of Justice (DOJ).

What is the Caravan and what should U.S. immigration authorities do with it?

What is the Caravan and what should U.S. immigration authorities do with it? We have heard a lot about the “Caravan” of immigrants making its way north through Mexico from the Northern Triangle- El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala- of Central America.  Once numbering over 1200 people, the remaining 150-200 members Caravan arrived at the U.S. border to request refuge in the United States.   When they got there, they were told that the U.S. was full.  There was not even a manger to house them.

Celebrating asylum in a country where it’s hard to come by

Celebrating asylum in a country where it’s hard to come by It can be so hard to stay positive as an immigration attorney in times like these. Every day, we face new assaults from the president, the attorney general, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Justice. This week, we learned that the attorney general is attempting to circumvent due process by telling immigration judges to reject asylum petitions without a full hearing if, upon initial review, they appear to be fraudulent or unlikely to succeed.

Client of the Month December 2017- Angie Salguero

Client of the Month December 2017- Angie Salguero This month, we are pleased to honor Angie Salguero as our Client of the Month. Angie, a transgender woman from El Salvador, won her case for asylum last month in front of the immigration judge in Baltimore, MD. Angie’s story of violence and persecution from a very young age included physical abuse by the police and gangs, the loss of family, a dangerous trip to the United States, and stay in immigration detention. 

August 2017 Client of the Month- Milan Stankovic

August 2017 Client of the Month- Milan Stankovic This month we are thrilled to recognize Milan Stankovic as our client of the month.  After filing his I-589 asylum application and three evidentiary filings, several hours of grueling interviews, numerous status inquiries, and six long years of seeking protection in the United States, Milan has finally been granted asylum.  Milan, previously a professional soccer player and small business owner in his home country of Serbia, fled his home in 2011 following years of brutal violence against him. 

Whitman Walker Health Presents Ava Benach with Fenner Award for Public Service

Whitman Walker Health Presents Ava Benach with Fenner Award for Public Service   Earlier this month, Ava Benach received the Fenner Award for Public Service from Whitman Walker Health Legal Services.  She got it for doing what she does best– winning cases! The award recognizes the unique relationship that Benach Collopy has formed with Whitman Walker Health.  Whitman Walker Health is the premier health care provider serving the LGBT community in Washington DC.  Since its founding in the early days of the HIV crisis, WWH has expanded its services to provide more holistic assistance to its community. 

Benach Collopy Asylum Summer Fellowship 2017

Benach Collopy Asylum Summer Fellowship 2017 The Benach Collopy Asylum Summer Fellowship 2017 I have been so lucky to get to know so many brave, hard-working, family-oriented, and generous people from all over the globe.  They all shared one thing in common: a willingness to take a chance to come to the U.S. to be the person they knew they were meant to be. -Ava Benach Description of Fellowship Surging violence against transgender and gender nonconforming communities worldwide continue to force a record number of individuals to seek protection at U.S.