Wage theft and workplace exploitation exist in our immigrant communities because of weak state laws, current attacks on federal workplace protections, and lack of enforcement by state and federal agencies, but also because of our immigration laws and how those laws are used by employers to exert power and control over workers who assert their rights. At MIRC, we deeply understand the interplay between immigration and workplace rights and in alliance with our community partners, we represent and support Michigan’s... more
MIRC has a particular interest and focus on promoting naturalization (application for U.S. citizenship). We are a participant in the Detroit New Americans Campaign, a collaborative effort to encourage and assist eligible permanent residents to apply for naturalization. To carry out this work, we partner with community-, business-, and faith-based organizations to host free community workshops and walk-in clinics throughout the metro area for individuals interested in citizenship. At the workshops and clinics, attorneys help participants apply... more
MIRC staff take active leadership roles in regional, statewide and national coalitions and organizations including the Michigan Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (MCIRR), the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the Global Michigan initiative, and many other groups promoting immigrant rights and racial equity.
MIRC’s Pro Bono Panel provides assistance to victims of domestic abuse or serious crimes who qualify for relief pursuant to the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) or the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (VTVPA, more commonly known by the "U" and "T" visas it provides). These two legal protections help vulnerable immigrants and their dependents to come forward and escape violent relationships or situations where they would otherwise not do so because of their undocumented or expired immigration status. VAWA self-petitions are for battered spouses and children of United... more
MIRC engages in impact work addressing key immigrant rights issues in the state of Michigan. As part of these efforts, MIRC staff directly represents clients facing barriers to realizing their rights and accessing services due to their immigration status, and also generates legal analysis of policies that have the potential to adversely impact the immigrant community. MIRC places special emphasis on issues affecting immigrant children and the children of immigrants.
For example, MIRC is currently co-counseling a case American Civil Liberties Union alleging violation of the... more
Trainings for Professionals (can be combined, expanded or contracted, can be presented in English or Spanish or with interpreter arranged by host organization):
- Immigration Law 101: A look at the history and basic contours of immigration law as it affects low income immigrants already present in the U.S. 90 minutes.
- Immigrant Rights 101: An overview of how immigration status interacts with and affects to other legal rights. Topics include civil rights with respect to arrest, detention and removal, access to education, access to public benefits and... more
Welcoming Michigan is an affiliate of the national, grassroots-driven collaborative, Welcoming America. This new and innovative initiative is working to create a welcoming atmosphere in which immigrants are more likely to integrate into the social fabric of their adopted hometowns. Welcoming Michigan utilizes a new approach to immigrant integration, which focuses on addressing the fears and concerns that U.S.-born Americans often associate with rapid local immigrant growth. Welcoming America’s theory of change is based on the idea that just as fertile soil is needed for a seed to grow;... more