Public Funds for Immigrant Legal Defense

An Immigrant Legal Defense Fund (ILDF) would provide free legal representation to indigent immigrants (adults and children) who are facing deportation in the Houston immigration courts in partnership with the Houston Immigration Legal Services Collaborative, who will administer the funding to organization who will provide free legal representation. A fully realized ILDF ensures that every immigrant in Houston whose income does not exceed 200% of the federal poverty guidelines and who is not otherwise represented has access to free immigration counsel. An Immigrant Legal Defense Fund increases court effectiveness and decreases detention times for those it represents, thereby saving taxpayer dollars, while maximizing due process. By keeping families together, an ILDF lowers the social and economic costs that would otherwise be incurred by the public programs that support struggling families. ILDF funds are typically administered by a non-profit organization through grants to organizations that provide free representation.