Catholic Charities Immigration Services provides low-cost immigration counseling and support to families and individuals who are eligible for immigration benefits and cannot afford private assistance. The mission of Catholic Charities Immigration Services is to work for solidarity in our community by welcoming the stranger in the spirit of the Gospel. We recognize the inalienable right of all persons to human dignity. We therefore assist and advocate for immigrants to attain family unity, economic independence and social integration.
Supported by a U.S. Department of Justice grant supporting a federal law to protect victims of human trafficking and violence, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) specialist assists immigrants in safely leaving dangerous situations and obtaining immigration status that supports them in making decisions for their own future. The Crime Victims Services Coordinator also works with law enforcement agencies and parish/community teams to educate them about immigrant victims' rights when they are victims of a violent crime and to provide access to critical resources for victims when they are in crisis.
- Application Assistance: Immigration Services prepares and files immigration applications and forms to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
- Counseling and Referrals: Counsels clients about immigration-related needs and refers clients to attorneys for legal assistance and deportation proceedings.
- Advocacy: Interacts with congressional representatives on behalf of immigrants.
- Education: Immigration Services conducts immigration workshops and seminars at various events in the community.
- VAWA is a program within Catholic Immigration Services that helps get lawful permanent resident status for victims of domestic violence who are married to U.S. citizens or other lawful permanent residents. Federal law protects victims of trafficking and violence. The work of our VAWA specialists is funded by a U.S. Department of Justice grant.
- Security against deportation: VAWA assists victims of certain crimes, like domestic violence, obtain Delayed Action and Employment Authorization when the victim is willing to help prosecute the criminal perpetrator.
- Immigration Assistance: Helps victims of human trafficking, where people are forced or coerced into servitude. In these cases, the VAWA program works with the local office of the FBI.