justice AmeriCorps Massachusetts

From 2014 until 2017, MIRA supported a team of attorneys providing representation for more than 160 children at the Boston Immigration Court.

justice AmeriCorps 2017
The 2016–2017 justice AmeriCorps members, from left: Susan Scheiner, Sanjay Sankaran, Sara Afshar, Elizabeth Taufa and Evan Benz.

Though there is no categorical right to counsel at the government’s expense for unaccompanied minors, children with attorneys are five times more likely to be granted protection. Coordinated by MIRA, justice AmeriCorps Massachusetts, which ran from 2014 until 2017, was part of a nationwide public service initiative to provide much-needed legal representation in immigration court to unaccompanied children fleeing violence in Central America. The program was ended by the Trump administration. 

Working in partnership with legal services agencies across the state, justice AmeriCorps Massachusetts attorneys served at legal service organizations in Massachusetts to provide legal assistance to unaccompanied children under the age of 18:

► Catholic Charities Refugee & Immigration Services, Boston
► Catholic Social Services, Fall River
► Central West Justice Center (affiliate of Community Legal Aid), Worcester
► Northeast Justice Center (affiliate of Northeast Legal Aid), Lynn
► MetroWest Legal Services, Framingham