Can you imagine being abruptly ejected from the United States–and leaving behind your home, your children, your job, your bank account, and everything else you’ve spent years to build? Can you imagine what your children would feel when they arrived home and you’re gone?
Deportation can be a cataclysm for families and communities, destroying decades of hard-earned assets and rupturing family development. That’s why advanced planning for financial and family issues is so important.
And that’s why Appleseed is working with major law firms around the country to update its popular “deportation manual” that helps immigrant families and those who work with them prepare for the cataclysm of deportation.
The new edition will feature 21 chapters on topics like child custody and related children’s issues, personal finances, assets and personal property, remittance payments, wages and benefits, business issues, and arrival back in Mexico. This edition will have eight more chapters than the first one.
Because of overwhelming demand, we’re publishing these chapters on a special webpage as they are ready. We’ll publish a full edition later this spring. We’re also preparing short documents with non-technical guidance for immigrants and their families. You can sign up here to receive updates on these chapters as they are published.
We’re already underway with eight chapters. The first three help answer critical questions involving the fate and well-being of children in the face of deportation:
- Child Custody: What custody issues will immigrant parents face? What can they do to protect parental rights before, during and after deportation?
- Assets and Benefits of Minor Children: How can assets be protected for the benefit of children of immigrants who are citizens? What about personal property, bank accounts, credit cards, child support, education savings plans, and government benefits?
- Ensuring Safety in Public Schools: What should immigrant parents and children do if they fear that public schools may reveal their legal status or share records with Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents? How can parents safeguard their children’s’ privacy, and help prevent bullying and harassment? How can school officials recognize and address these concerns?
We are extremely grateful to the law firms Ballard Spahr and Cooley for their hard work helping to update these chapters. And thank you to all of you who are working to help vulnerable immigrants and refugees. Your work is making a huge difference in a hard time.
This is our mission, too. Indeed, for Appleseed, this is just our latest recent initiative to secure justice and opportunity for refugees and other immigrants. We worked with Ballard Spahr to organize trainings on custody issues for Mexican consulate staff. This winter we released a new practice guide to encourage more attorneys to do pro bono work to help immigrants navigate the complicated U.S. immigration court system. We submitted information to the Department of Homeland Security on immigrants affected by the recent travel ban.
If you want to help give the most vulnerable among us a chance to build a better life, please make a tax-deductible contribution today to the Appleseed Network or one of our 17 amazing Centers. And you can sign up here to receive updates on these chapters as they are published.