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Gov. Cuomo announces more legal help, centers with free services for immigrants in NYS

Part of the plan will create a "New Opportunity Center" in Syracuse and Oneida County that will provide free services to immigrants (WHAM photo)

Two new measures are being taken to help immigrants in New York State.

It is all a part of the Liberty Defense project, the first of its kind in the nation, announced by Governor Cuomo last December, that he says will help and protect immigrants targeted by ICE.

The first of the two measures involves a Rapid Response Program which has regional providers and attorneys ready for any actions taken by ICE.

The state has selected two dedicated attorneys for most parts of the state including:

  • Central New York: Frank H. Hiscock Legal Aid Society, providing two dedicated attorneys due to the increase in the number of raids on local farms
  • Finger Lakes: The Legal Aid Society of Rochester, NY, providing two dedicated attorneys to respond to the large number of arrests and detentions of immigrants in the region
  • Western New York: Journey's End Refugee Services, providing two dedicated attorneys to respond to the large number of arrests and detentions of immigrants in the region
  • Southern Tier: Journey's End Refugee Services, providing one dedicated attorney
  • Mohawk Valley: While no applications for this region were received during this procurement, the LDP is working with partners to ensure the region is appropriately served

The second measure to help immigrants includes 21 New Opportunity Centers, that were selected by the Office for New Americans, which will offer new, free services to immigrants.

The centers will provide immigrants with essential services such as education, legal guidance, naturalization assistance, and guidance within their neighborhoods, including the Southern Tier for the first time.

The 21 selected centers include:

  • Central New York: Catholic Charities of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Syracuse, NY (Onondaga County
  • Mohawk Valley: Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees (Oneida County)
  • Finger Lakes: Catholic Charities Diocese of Rochester Catholic Family Center (Monroe County)
  • New York City: Mercy Center, Inc. (Bronx)
  • Chinese-American Planning Council (Brooklyn and Manhattan)
  • Arab American Association of NY, Inc. (Brooklyn)
  • Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights (Manhattan)
  • Queens Community House (Queens)
  • Make the Road New York (Queens)
  • MinKwon Center for Community Action, Inc. (Queens)
  • Long Island: Central American Refugee Center (CARECEN) (Nassau County)
  • Make the Road New York (Suffolk County)
  • Hudson Valley: Catholic Charities Community Services, Archdiocese of NY (Dutchess County and Orange County)
  • Neighbors Link (Westchester County)
  • Make the Road New York (Westchester County)
  • Capital Region: U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants - Albany Field Office (Albany County)
  • North Country: While no applications for this region were received during this procurement, ONA is working with partners to ensure the region is appropriately served.
  • Western New York: Jericho Road Ministries (Erie County)
  • Southern Tier: Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Rochester (Tompkins & Tioga Counties)
  • American Civic Association (Broome County)
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