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Nov 26, 2013 As New York prepares for its first new mayor in 12 years,  a coalition of organizations hosted a series of discussions about the future of the city, called Talking Transition. This nonpartisan event was organized to provide a forum for ordinary New Yorkers to have their voices heard during the mayoral transition. The New York Immigrant Family Unity Program (NYIFUP), a pilot project...
Oct 28, 2013 Someone was empowered to speak up. In New York City, home to what many claim to be the most opinionated voices in the country, we often take for granted that people will talk—that they’ll share their stories, scream out during an emergency, and tell it like it is. But in the case of “Baby Hope,” it took two decades for someone, an anonymous tipster, to speak up about a horrendous crime. Now that there’s finally an arrest in the 22-year-old cold case, law...
Sep 25, 2013 In his speech to the American Bar Association last month, Attorney General Eric Holder described a broken American criminal justice system that jails low-level offenders at enormous financial and human costs, with little or no deterrent effect, and at the expense of focusing resources on violent crime and threats to our national security. Holder pointed out that “too many Americans go to too many prisons for far too long, and for no truly good law...

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Aug 15, 2013 In New York City, where more than one-third of residents are foreign-born, approximately 1,800 people per year are detained and sent to county jails without the ability to pay for an attorney as they face deportation in immigration courts in New York and New Jersey. This includes asylum-seekers, lawful permanent residents, and those with American children. The impact of legal representation on their success in court is profound: detained people facing...

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Jan 22, 2013 We are approaching the end of January, which is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. But we are not seeing the end of modern-day slavery. Human trafficking is a hidden but growing phenomenon both outside and within U.S. borders. Many victims of trafficking, particularly women and children, are exploited for purposes of prostitution and pornography. However, trafficking also takes place in diverse...
Dec 10, 2012 Storm Lake is a town of 13,000 people in northwestern Iowa. I became the police chief in October 1989 just as our town was reaching a demographic tipping point. At first, change came slowly in the late 1970’s with the arrival of small groups of immigrants from Laos and various Latin American...

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Dec 3, 2012 The Vera Institute’s high quality research often depends upon collaborations with leading service organizations who work closely with the justice system to rescue and protect victims of abuse. Sanctuary for Families, a partner organization in the Vera Institute’s research on human...

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