Vera's Center on Immigration and Justice (CIJ) works with government, nonprofit partners, and communities to improve government systems that affect immigrants’ lives. CIJ focuses on two objectives: increasing immigrants’ access to legal services, and improving relationships between immigrant communities and law enforcement. The center administers legal services programs, develops and implements pilot programs, provides technical assistance, and conducts evaluation and empirical research.

Related Work

Police and Communities Must Work Together to Support Victims of Hate Crimes

After the 2016 presidential election, unusually large numbers of children and adults all over the United States have reacted by expressing hate, bigotry, and racism, contrary to our best principles of equality. Hate crime has been unleashed—with swastikas painted in playgrounds and schoolyards, attacks on Muslim school girls and cries of “build the...

Blog Post
  • Laura Simich
    Laura Simich
  • Jacob  Kang-Brown
    Jacob Kang-Brown
December 20, 2016
Blog Post

New York Immigrant Family Unity Project lays groundwork for constitutional victory

A recent decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit established that an immigrant is constitutionally entitled to a bond hearing within six months of being detained and must be released on bond unless the government provides compelling evidence that he or she is a flight risk or danger to the community. This important dec...

Blog Post
  • Bettina Rodriguez  Schlegel
    Bettina Rodriguez Schlegel
December 28, 2015
Blog Post

Gaining Momentum

The New York Immigrant Family Unity Project expands to the Ulster Immigration Court

Unlike in the criminal justice system, people in deportation proceedings do not have the right to counsel to assist in their legal defense. As of November 2015, however, 40 New Yorkers confronted with deportation proceedings at the Ulster Immigration Court in Napanoch, New York will no longer have to face a judge on their own. With funding from the...

Blog Post
  • Grace Paras
    Grace Paras
  • Marina Caeiro
    Marina Caeiro
December 07, 2015
Blog Post

Struggle for Identity and Inclusion

Unaccompanied Immigrant Youth in New York City

Youth have been arriving at U.S. borders on their own since the early days of Ellis Island, but it was not until the summer of 2014—when the number of unaccompanied immigrant youth arriving to the United States from Central America increased nearly tenfold from recent years—that child migrants became the topic of an urgent political debate. While l...

  • Laura Simich, Karen Berberich
August 04, 2015

Uniting Communities Post-9-11

Tactics for Cultivating Community Partnerships with Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, and South Asian Communities

To help local law enforcement agencies negotiate the cultural, religious, ethnic, racial, and language barriers that exist between them and Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, and South Asian (AMEMSA) communities, Vera has produced Uniting Communities Post-9/11. Funded by the Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, this gu...

  • Susan Shah, Pradine Saint-Fort
March 12, 2015