Help Us Help Dreamers!

Help us help Dreamers!

Dreamers are recipients of the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.  They are young people who came to the U.S. before the age of 16 and are currently in school, a graduate of high school or equivalent, or honorably discharged from the U.S. military.   They also have a clean criminal record and have passed a background check.  The DACA registration is good for two years, after which the DACA recipient must again meet the same requirements in order to renew DACA for two more years.

An estimated 790,000 young people have undergone the rigorous vetting and are enrolled in the DACA program.

On September 5th, Attorney General Sessions announced that the current administration is terminating DACA. Current DACA recipients have only until October 5, 2017 to renew their status.

Terminating DACA will have immediate devastating consequences for DACA recipients. With your support, we will continue to reach out to the community to ensure that as many DACA recipients as possible renew their DACA status before the deadline of October 5th.

Please take action now to support the Dreamers by donating to Catholic Migration Services and earmarking your donation to support our DACA work.  We will use these funds to help Dreamers needing financial assistance pay the $495 fee charged by the government and to support our expanded efforts to assist Dreamers with their renewal applications.

DACA Fact Sheets Released by Catholic Migration Services

Catholic Migration Services is deeply troubled and saddened by the Trump administration’s lack of commitment to immigrant youth. On September 5th 2017, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Trump administration was rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA). DACA was a program put in place by President Obama to protect young people from deportation if they had been brought to the U.S. as children, and to enable them to lawfully work. An estimated 800,000 children and young adults across the country applied for, and were granted DACA status. These DACA recipients have been able to finish school and obtain jobs, contribute to our economy and communities, and live without the constant fear of deportation.

For more information on the government’s termination of the DACA program and what it means to current DACA recipients, see our fact sheets in English and Spanish. For advice or assistance with DACA renewal applications, please call us at (718) 236-3000 (Brooklyn) or (347) 472-3500 (Queens).

Renewal Period for Haitian Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

TPS is a temporary legal status  granted to Haitian nationals. Temporary Protected Status also offers Haitian nationals the opportunity to apply for work authorization, which permits them to work legally in the United States.

TPS must be renewed every 18 months. Haitian nationals must renew their TPS NO LATER than July 24, 2017. Upon renewal, TPS will be extended until July 22, 2018.

This renewal period is open ONLY to Haitian nationals who currently have TPS. With rare exceptions, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is NOT accepting new TPS registrations.

The basic eligibility requirements to renew Haitian TPS are:

– Applicant must be a Haitian national

– Applicant must have entered the U.S. prior to January 12, 2011

– Applicant must have resided in the U.S. continuously before or since January 12, 2011

– Applicant must have been approved for TPS previously (either in 2010, and timely re-registered in 2011 OR in 2011)

– Male applicants 18 years or older must be registered with Selective Service

The USCIS fees for Haitian TPS renewal are:

– $465, for applicant 14 years or older applying for employment authorization

– $85, for applicant 14 years or older not applying for employment authorization

– $380, for applicant under 14 years applying for employment authorization

– $0,  for applicant under 14 years not applying for employment authorization

Fee waivers are available under certain circumstances.

Catholic Migration Services provides legal representation before USCIS to all Haitian TPS applicants we serve.

If you would like more information, or if you are a Haitian national and need to re-register your TPS, please call our Brooklyn office at 718-236-3000 or our Queens office at 347-472-3500 AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

Click here for information about Haitian TPS in Kreyòl Ayisyen.

Article written by Deacon Paul Dorsinville, Health Education Coordinator and Kimberley Kearns, Public Ally/Capacity Building Specialist

Special thanks to the Legal Aid Society’s Immigration Law Unit for information.

Queens Landlord Accused of Trying to Scare Undocumented Immigrants into Moving Away

An undocumented immigrant residing in an apartment complex on Parsons Boulevard in Queens, NY seeks assistance from Catholic Migration and Queens Legal Services after realty company seeks to evict undocumented tenants. The landlord is accused of using scare tactics to encourage neighbors to report suspicious activity to the Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement Unit. Posting signs accompanied by tip line numbers, tenants in the largely immigrant community now live in fear. Carlos Ortiz, tenant organizer with Catholic Migration Services shares this unscrupulous approach with NY 1 reporter Ruschell Boone.

Read the full story and watch the interview with NY 1: Queens Landlord Accused of Trying to Scare Undocumented Immigrants into Moving Away

Vatican Launches New Site Dedicated to Migrants and Refugees

In an effort to expand how the Church accompanies people, the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development recently launched a new website, migrants-refugees.va “to ensure that those forced to flee are not left behind.” Accessible in 5 languages, the Vatican office is personally directed by Pope Francis and is a direct response to the Holy Father’s concern for the displaced and marginalized across the globe.

Photo Credit: CRS

During the Sixth International Forum on Migration and Peace at the Vatican, February 21 to 22, His Holiness shared four “verbs” when addressing migrants and refugees among us. He challenged leaders and citizens of the world to welcome, protect, promote and integrate our fellow brothers and sisters. In doing so, we are called to discover the “sacred value of hospitality.”

At Catholic Migration Services, our mission is to “welcome the stranger in our midst”, by being committed to empowering underserved immigrant communities in Brooklyn and Queens regardless of religion, ethnicity, national origin, or immigration status. We are proud to connect our community to the Vatican’s newest website as a way to expand our services, education, and advocacy among the many people we assist.

The Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development was originally announced by Pope Francis on August 31, 2016 and began operation January 1st of this year. According to Radio Vaticana, the new Dicastery was created “to better serve the needs of the most vulnerable, including migrants and refugees, in yet another expression of his strong concern for  the protection of people on the move.”

Read the full address from the Vatican: His Holiness Pope Francis to Participants in the International Forum on “Migration and Peace”

Errol Louis delivers commencement speech at Brooklyn Law School graduation

Congratulations to the 2017 graduates of Brooklyn Law School and our very own, Very Rev. Patrick J. Keating, Chief Executive Officer of Catholic Migration Services. Fr. Keating delivered the opening invocation and received his Juris Doctorate alongside 399 students during the 116th commencement ceremony on Thursday, May 18th.

Political anchor at NY1 News and a 2005 graduate, Errol Louis, delivered the commencement speech and received an honorary degree. According to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, the common theme that carried across everyone’s speech was the responsibility toward community. In the commencement speech, Louis reminded the graduates not to forget their “invisible clients.”

“Remember that you have clients beyond the ones who are paying you,” Louis said. “Justice is your client. Fairness is your client. Honesty and integrity and service are your clients, and they deserve your best effort.”

Read the full story from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle: Errol Luis delivers commencement speech at Brooklyn Law School graduation