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Law conference addresses how best to represent immigrants in Louisiana

Loyola press release - March 24, 2014

The Loyola University New Orleans College of Law and nonprofit Human Rights First are hosting a daylong conference “Left Out in Louisiana: Addressing the Crisis in Immigration Representation,” Friday, March 28, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the College of Law, room 308. It is free and open to the public, and continuing legal education credit is available. Breakfast and lunch will be provided to all pre-registered conference attendees. Co-sponsored by Loyola College of Law, the Louisiana State Bar Association and the Paul M. Hebert Law Center at LSU, the conference is part of the College of Law’s centennial year celebration.

The conference features four panels of key local, state and national stakeholders to discuss how best to address the thousands of immigrants in Louisiana who are attempting to navigate the complex U.S. immigration system. Many of them do not speak English. Since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Louisiana’s civil legal service providers have struggled to meet the need for pro bono representation as the state’s immigrant population has grown substantially. Eighty-seven percent of the immigrants detained in Louisiana have no legal representation, according to Human Rights Watch.

Speakers include:

  • The Honorable Jay C. Zainey, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana;
  • Eleanor Acer, director of Human Rights First’s Refugee Protection program;
  • Juan Osuna, director of the Executive Office of Immigration Review for the U.S. Department of Justice;
  • William P. Quigley, J.D. '77, professor and director of the Stuart H. Smith Law Clinic and Center for Social Justice at Loyola; and
  • Hiroko Kusuda, J.D., associate clinic professor of immigration law in the Stuart H. Smith Law Clinic.

Since 1979, the immigration law section of Loyola’s Stuart H. Smith Law Clinic has represented non-citizens in a variety of issues before the U.S. Department of Justice Immigration Courts and the Board of Immigration Appeals as well as the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

For more information and a full agenda and list of presenters, visit the conference website or contact Caroline Phillips, associate director of outreach and public events for Human Rights First.

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