For Immediate Release
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(NEW YORK, NY) April 18, 2019: Over the last couple of years ICE has stepped up enforcement in New York courthouses. Their presence there has had a chilling effect on immigrants, who were less likely to engage in the justice system for fear of being detained. The New York Legal Assistance Group’s (NYLAG) President & Attorney-in-Charge Beth Goldman has issued the following statement:
“For two years, NYLAG has actively participated in the ICE out of Courts Coalition, which was formed to address this serious problem. The coalition worked with the Office of Court Administration (OCA) and other stakeholders and produced the Integrity of our Courts Report providing analysis on how courthouse arrests derail and disrupt the functioning of the judiciary system.”
“Following the release of that report, the OCA made significant, system-wide changes to address this problem. OCA has issued a directive which will limit ICE’s ability to detain immigrants without a judicial warrant or judicial order authorizing an arrest, among other provisions.”
“This rule provides protections — and a strong statement by OCA — that immigrant New Yorkers must be able to access our courts without fearing widespread presence of immigration enforcement.”
“Our justice system cannot function equitably if all members of our community cannot safely appear to seek redress and justice.”
Founded in 1990, the New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) is a leading not-for-profit legal services organization advocating for adults, children, and families that are experiencing poverty or have low-income. We address emerging and urgent needs with comprehensive, free civil legal services, direct representation, impact litigation, policy advocacy, financial counseling, a medical-legal partnership model, and community education and partnerships.