FAQs & Explainers

This community resource explains Freedom City Policies in Austin, Texas, an example of organizers, advocates and community members coming together to fight for the decriminalization of immigrants and communities of color. It gives an overview of the policies, why they were enacted, their impact on the community, individuals’ rights under the policies and actions that may be taken if police...
It is time that we pass laws to build communities that are healthy and thriving, instead of ones torn apart by criminalization, biased policing, incarceration, and deportation. To secure the full human rights of all members of our communities, we need a new way forward for immigrant justice— one that ends senseless divisions of “good versus bad” immigrants and recognizes that all communities...
This community resource provides a brief explanation of the Immigration Court experience. It gives an overview of what happens in Immigration Court, how to confirm information about a case in Immigration Court, and what a person in removal proceedings should do if they do not have an attorney to represent them at an upcoming hearing. This information is useful for community members and advocates...
Advocates and community members can work together to fight messages of fear and panic by helping community members learn about their rights and how to protect themselves from ICE. The Immigrant Legal Resource Center has created a variety of materials to educate the community and prepare individuals for possible encounters with immigration authorities. For in depth information on community rights...
Gubernatorial pardons have become an increasingly important and accessible tool for immigrants to erase certain immigration consequences of criminal convictions. This two-page primer, written in collaboration with the UCLA School of Law Criminal Defense Clinic and available in both English and Spanish, provides an overview of the California Pardon process for potential applicants and their...
Diversion refers to a variety of programs that seek to avoid the processing of a defendant through the traditional criminal legal system. The goal of diversion is to direct an individual who has been accused of a crime into a treatment or care program as an alternative to imprisonment and/or prosecution. Diversion can take many forms, depending on how and when the diversion program is introduced...
As the Trump administration’s aggressive immigration policies have increasingly come under scrutiny, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), a division within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has played an increasingly significant role in carrying out brutal tactics to target immigrants for deportation. This backgrounder serves to demystify HSI and show that funding for HSI is...
Starting in June 2019, Bexar County and San Antonio will implement "cite and release," a new administrative policy that seeks to reduce arrests. The policy directs law enforcement officers to use their discretion to issue citations for low-level, non-violent offenses.


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