Asylum is a Human Right
Cross Border Initiative
Under the Trump Administration and Biden Administration more than 70,000 asylum-seeking human beings were forced back into Mexico under the Migrant Protection Protocols (also known as "Remain in Mexico"). The cruel policy forced thousands into the streets of notoriously dangerous border towns and overcrowded shelters with unsanitary conditions while they awaited their asylum hearings. The Cross Border Initiative (CBI) team represented MPP respondents before Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), seeking their removal from the program and in immigration court. The CBI team worked tirelessly to advocate for an end to the MPP program.
Under both the Trump and Biden administrations, asylum seekers have been illegally and inhumanely barred from their right to seek asylum through the Title 42 policy. ImmDef fights to restore asylum and protect the rights of vulnerable asylum seekers.
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ImmDef has been able to reunite families and also assist families in accessing the asylum process in the United States. Many of the clients we have helped faced life-threatening medical emergencies and threats to life and safety in their home countries.
at the U.S.-Mexico border
Our representation begins with a legal consultation. Our team conducts consultations both within the United States and at the U.S. Mexico border.
Due to Title 42, many asylum seekers have been turned back and expelled to Mexico and unable to secure U.S. immigration legal services from Mexico.
We conduct consultations at the border to breach the physical gap between us and our potential clients. In the past two years we have completed over 800 border rights consultations.
ImmDef uses a universal representation model that applies to our clients fighting against removal in immigration court. We will represent any adult or family that qualifies for our services on a merits-blind basis.
We believe that immigrants undergoing immigration proceedings deserve a fair opportunity to pursue their asylum claims. We represent detainees at their Credible Fear and Reasonable Fear Interviews before USCIS. A fair opportunity can occur when they are allowed to fight their cases outside of immigrant detention. We also advocate to free our clients from immigrant detention and represent clients before immigration judges for bonds and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for parole.
1,300 people reached through
Our team seeks to empower asylum seeking families and individuals with accurate information on latest border policies that affect their right to asylum.
In 2022 alone, we hosted 22 legal presentations in Tijuana, Mexico. Our Community Education Services covered updates on U.S. immigration border policies, U.S. immigration law, and our legal services.
Our legal presentations are live streamed through Facebook/META on a near monthly basis to facilitate access.
ImmDef’s Cross Border Initiative team is fighting back every day against cruelty against migrants at the border with a focus on assisting children and families.
We deliver full-scale
deportation defense, which includes advocacy in immigration
court, before U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Additionally, our services also allow for advocacy with Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) as well as Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and contacting partner organizations to match families with potential sponsors.
Our specialized legal services minimize risks of family separation and detention.
We are committed to advocating for not only our clients, but for the many migrants who suffer on their journey's to safety in the United States.
We monitor conditions and treatment of clients detention facilities including border patrol stations, publicize information, and file complaints where the rights of our clients are being violated.
San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium:
The San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium (SDIRC) advocates for policies that advance the human and civil rights of immigrants and refugees on the local, state and federal levels, and monitors the implementation of local and state policies in San Diego County.
SDIRC advocates for the betterment of immigrant health care, ICE out of CA, SD legal defense program, Vision Act, etc.
The California Welcoming Task Force is a binational coalition dedicated to re-envisioning how the U.S. can welcome people seeking asylum safely and expeditiously at our border by coordinating across sectors: humanitarian, legal, health, advocacy and communications. ImmDef is a co-facilitator of the legal subgroup of the CAWTF.
Images of our San Diego team in action!
Legal Representation Makes a Difference: Client Story
Immdef Managing Attorney Karina Ramos speaks on ImmDef's involvement at the emergency intake sites and her role in defending our client Angela.
Immigrant Rights are Human Rights.