Queens residents looking for assistance navigating immigration policies and proceedings can take advantage of a series of free events throughout the borough this month.
Spearheaded by Borough President Melinda Katz, the first “Know Your Rights Week” will offer informational workshops and legal services to immigrants from June 25-29. All of the scheduled events are free and confidential.
On June 25, the Legal Aid Society will provide screenings for individuals facing “removal,” or deportation proceedings, at the Queens Library at Jackson Heights at 35-51 81st St. from 6 to 8 p.m. On-site interpreters who speak English, French and Spanish will be available; additional languages will be interpreted through an electronic service. Walk-ins are welcome but appointments can be made by emailing immhelp[at]legal-aid.org. Those who attend should bring their Notice to Appear and any other immigration documents related to their case.
On June 26, Queens Legal Services will offer a legal clinic on naturalization issues at their offices at 89-00 Sutphin Blvd. in Jamaica from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. On-site interpreters who speak English, Korean and Spanish will be available; additional languages will be interpreted through an electronic service. Call for an appointment at 917-661-4500.
On June 27, the MinKwon Center for Community Action will hold a clinic on issues related to the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program at their Flushing offices at 136-19 41st Ave. from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Services will be provided in English, Chinese (Mandarin), Japanese, Korean and Spanish. Appointments can be made by contacting Eri Cahill at 718-460-5600 Ext. 505 or emailing eri.cahill[at]minkwon.org.
On June 28, an Immigration Resource Fair will be held at Queens Center Mall at 90-15 Queens Blvd. in Elmhurst from 4 to 9 p.m. Resource tables and clinics will be organized on level two and three of Macy’s. Languages on-site will include English, Bengali, Chinese (Mandarin), Croatian, Korean, Russian, Spanish and Tagalog. No appointments necessary.
On June 29, Catholic Migration Services will offer one-on-one consultations for those in removal proceedings or who are seeking asylum at their Sunnyside offices at 47-01 Queens Blvd. from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Languages will be interpreted through an electronic service. Appointments are encouraged and can be scheduled by calling 347-472-3500.
“We are in deeply troubling times,” Katz said. “Our country’s increasingly dehumanizing immigration laws and procedures are tearing families apart, even in a Sanctuary City like New York. Broad raids and sweeps of immigration enforcement, even of those without a criminal record, have successfully spread fear and imposed a chilling effect on everyday activities and responsibilities. But we are a nation of immigrants, and Queens is about all of our families’ futures.”
Councilman Daniel Dromm, who represents areas of East Elmhurst, Elmhurst and Jackson Heights, said the series of events “will empower immigrant families.”
“My district is home to one of the largest and most diverse immigrant communities in the state,” Dromm said. “I am pleased that the borough president is making every effort to protect our immigrants from harassment, discrimination and violence. I will continue to work alongside her to ensure that Queens remains a safe haven for all people.”