The office of Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti has announced the creation of a fund that will provide assistance to immigrants facing deportation without a lawyer.
Launched with $5 million in government funds from the City and County of Los Angeles and $5 million from the California Community Foundation, the Weingart Foundation, and the California Endowment, the L.A. Justice Fund will begin assisting immigrant Angelenos in early 2017. Key partners in the effort will determine in the coming weeks how to allocate the funds most effectively.
There are an estimated thirty-seven hundred detained and unrepresented immigrants in the greater Los Angeles area, and potentially thousands more who have not been detained or who may be in legal proceedings without a lawyer. "We need to protect hard-working immigrant families who contribute immensely to our economy and quality of life in Los Angeles," said California Community Foundation president and CEO Antonia Hernández. "We're proud to work alongside government partners and fellow foundations to ensure even the most vulnerable in immigrant communities have access to legal services and the due process they rightly deserve."
"Diversity, inclusion, and equity are at the core of what Los Angeles stands for," said Fred Ali, president and CEO of the Weingart Foundation. "Everyone — regardless of immigration status — should be allowed to participate, prosper, and reach their full potential. These are the values that the L.A. Justice Fund will help safeguard, and the Weingart Foundation is proud to be a part of an effort that quickly coalesced government and philanthropy around this critically important issue."