No legal representation assistance for detained immigrants in ‘sanctuary city’

IMMIGRATION | Immigrant residents who are detained by ICE in the nation’s capital are unable to access legal representation after the mayor redirected funds the DC Council set aside for them into a fund that offers legal services to immigrants. Advocates are grateful that these services are being offered but think the city should be assisting detained immigrants also. (WaPo, 8/26)

“There’s a real threat to due process, and there’s a real need to provide those kind of services,” said Amaha Kassa of African Communities Together, a group that assists detained immigrants in New York and has used grant funding in the District to provide proactive legal assistance to 35 mostly Ethio­pian residents. “It’s more resource-intensive to meet with your lawyer if you are detained.”

“If you cannot afford an attorney, you have to go before an immigration judge and prosecuting attorney on your own,” said Annie Chen, the immigration project manager for New York-based Vera. “More local governments are seeing local community members ending up in immigration detention and deportation, and they are seeing more of the need for these programs in their community.”

– Loudoun County will now have a Mental Health Docket to keep nonviolent offenders who are diagnosed with serious mental illnesses from jail. The defendants have to make plea deals to qualify for the program. (WTOP, 8/29)

– A recently published report found that the militarization of the police force does not reduce crime or keep communities safer. (PNAS, 8/20)

HUMAN RIGHTSDeadly Violence Against Transgender People Is on the Rise. The Government Isn’t Helping. (ACLU Blog, 8/21)

– A bipartisan group of Congress members have introduced a bill to empower more working citizens to give through a pre-tax payroll deduction for employee giving. (PND Blog, 8/27)

– Busting Philanthropy’s Myths about Native Americans (NPQ, 8/27)

– After a Virginia school district announced that it planned to arm teachers, the state’s attorney general has said that school districts don’t have the authority to make that decision. (Richmond Times, 8/28)

Montgomery County Officials Call for Contraception To Be Available at All 25 County High Schools (Bethesda Beat, 8/28)

Here’s a guide to this weekend’s National Book Festival.

– Kendra