The Association of Pro Bono Counsel (APBCo) and Human Rights First will host an event to discuss the impact of asylum and immigration court system backlogs in the wake of Human Rights First’s recently released report “In the Balance: Backlogs Delay Protection in the U.S. Asylum and Immigration Court Systems.” The world now faces the greatest refugee crisis since World War II, and the need for effective, timely and fair U.S. processing of asylum claims could not be greater. But the U.S. asylum and immigration court systems are leaving asylum seekers in limbo for years, undermining the recruitment of pro bono legal counsel and prolonging the separation of refugee families.
Panelists will address how chronic underfunding, hiring challenges and shifting enforcement strategies have led to alarming backlogs in the U.S. asylum and immigration systems, exposing vulnerable asylum seekers and their families to combined wait times of up to six years for resolution of their claims. Asylum seekers in California face the nation’s largest backlogs, with initial interviews delayed nearly five years in Los Angeles and two years in San Francisco, and immigration court proceedings reaching nearly three years at the State’s largest courts. Panelists will also discuss the impact of these backlogs on pro bono legal representation and some steps the U.S. Government should take to address the backlogs and delays.
Jenna Gilbert (Moderator)
Staff Attorney, Human Rights First
B. Shaw Drake
Equal Justice Works Fellow, Human Rights First
A. Ashley Tabaddor
Immigration Judge (Appearing as Regional V.P. of the National Association of Immigration Judges and not as an official of the U.S. Department of Justice).
David A. Lash
Managing Counsel for Pro Bono and Public Interest Services, O’Melveny & Myers
Member and Past Co-President, The Association of Pro Bono Counsel (APBCo)
Senior Staff Attorney – Immigrants’ Rights Project, Public Counsel
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Coffee/Breakfast: 8:45 AM – 9:00 AM
Event: 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
O'Melveny & Myers LLP
400 South Hope Street, 18th Floor
Los Angeles, California, 90071