CMS is collaborating with the Arab-American Association of New York (AAANY) to make free legal services more accessible to the Arabic-speaking community in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. AAANY is a social services organization serving the Arab immigrant community to adjust to their new home in New York. Their services include ESL and citizenship classes, public benefits eligibility screening, job application and resume assistance, youth programs, and leading advocacy efforts in a variety of campaigns.
In February 2014, CMS staff met with AAANY staff to learn about the community needs and discuss possible partnership opportunities. From the start, it was clear that there is an overwhelming need for free legal services in the Arabic-speaking community that CMS was glad to help fill. Since March 2014, CMS has conducted multiple clinic days at the AAANY offices. CMS attorneys and counselors have consulted with tens of clients on a variety of legal issues and provided valuable advice to clients who otherwise may have no access to free and reliable legal services. On many occasions, CMS staff have offered representation to AAANY clients. More clinic days are regularly scheduled over the next few months. CMS looks forward to continued collaboration with AAANY.