D.C. Attorneys Respond to Demand for Immigration, Asylum Assistance

April 18, 2017

D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center's “Representing Asylum Seekers – Advanced

As the demand for immigration and asylum assistance grows, D.C. attorneys have responded. More than 60 attorneys, paralegals and law students turned out on April 5 for the second D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center training in a series designed to prepare them to take pro bono asylum cases. 

“Representing Asylum Seekers – Advanced” was led by Denise Hunter of Whitman-Walker-Health and Cori Hash of Human Rights First. The training provided in-depth presentations from experienced immigration practitioners including Karen Grisez (Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson), Amy Cheung (Tahirih Justice Center), Connor Cory (Whitman-Walker Health), Jennifer Bibby-Gerth (Catholic Charities D.C.), and Kelly White (CAIR Coalition). Presentations covered diverse topics, including credible and reasonable fear interviews, asylum claims based on gender and sexuality, and children’s asylum claims. 

Attendees also had a rare opportunity to practice a mock asylum hearing in U.S. Immigration Court, featuring Judge Lawrence O. Burman* from the Arlington Immigration Court. Participants simulated a hearing for an asylum applicant from Central America. Participants also observed an Immigration Appellate practice panel featuring Judge Charles Adkins-Blanch*, vice chairman of the Board of Immigration Appeals, Karen Grisez, Bradley Jenkins (CLINIC), and Ben Winograd (IRAC).  

Hosted by the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center, the training was sponsored by Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights (CAIR) Coalition, Whitman-Walker Health, and Human Rights First. In addition, the training was cosponsored by Catholic Charities Immigration Legal Services, International Law Section, Litigation Section, and the Tahirih Justice Center. 

For questions about this training (or other Pro Bono Center trainings), please email the Pro Bono Center Training Program

*Appearing in their personal capacities