Mural at Maplewood Elementary School, Austin, Texas

Victoria Rossi on the Meanings of Sanctuary

The terms “sanctuary” and “sanctuary movement” are bandied about with reverence and respect….. or disgust and fury.  As I write, Austin is experiencing ferocious retaliation from the Texas Governor, Texas Legislature, and ICE, for supposedly being a “sanctuary city.”  But what does that even mean? Victoria Rossi has written a beautiful, clear, and helpful analysis […]

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GRITS – Getting Radical in the South — 2016

Yesterday, October 15, I was privileged to participate in a conversation at the law-student run conference, GRITS 2016. GRITS stands for Getting Radical in the South. Law students Elizabeth Schmelzel (on the left) and Reema Ali (on the right) organized our panel named something along the lines of “Reclaiming Radical Religion: Faith-based lawyering & activism.” […]

Thinking about Advance Parole for studying abroad?

SORRY, this post is no longer accurate, given the results of the November 2016 presidential election.  We don’t know what President-elect Trump will do, but given the statements he has made, no DACA recipient should count on getting back into the U.S. after January 20, 2017.  DO NOT GO ANYWHERE with (or without) Advance Parole […]

historical-steps-uneven

ICE & GEO breaking more laws than we knew

All children in the U.S., regardless of immigration status, are entitled to a free public education on the same basis as other kids, even if they are locked up.  But at the Karnes family detention center, the school is on the second floor, and since there’s no elevator, completely inaccessible to kids with mobility impairments. […]

kate & me April 15, 2016

AILA Texas-Oklahoma-New Mexico “Pro Bono” Champion

On Friday, April 15, colleagues in the American Immigration Lawyers Association honored me with the AILA Chapter Pro Bono Champion award for 2016.  Our chapter — Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico — is the belly of the beast.  Frankly, given how many outstanding advocates devote their time & considerable expertise to assisting refugees and immigrants, and […]

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Child care licenses for ICE detention centers?

Child care centers exist to take care of children. The State of Texas requires most child care centers to be licensed, and to be licensed, they must meet certain minimal standards, set by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS). ICE detention centers exist to enforce U.S. immigration law, and more specifically, to […]

flyer for March 30, 2016, talk at U Illinois in Urbana

conversations, presentations & such*

Social Justice Symposium, St. Edward’s University, Austin, Texas, April 4, 2016 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, March 30, 2016 Derechos en Crisis: Refugees,  Migrant Detention, and Authoritarian Neoliberalism February 24 – 26, 2016, Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies, UT Austin        

on the way to brownsville

Necessary and impossible: effective interviewing practices.

Use open-ended questions. YES, even in a detention center. YES, even when you’re in a hurry. 1. Be aware of personal space. Respect your narrator’s personal space. Make yourself comfortable, too. If you need to pull back from someone who is “in your face,” do so. Be aware that people have different expectations about what […]