2016 Equal Justice Works Fellow, Brooke Bischoff

Brooke Bischoff

Name of Host Organization: Texas Civil Rights Project
City, State: El Paso, Texas
Issue area: Immigrant Populations
Sponsors: The Texas Access to Justice Foundation

The Project

Combat civil rights violations facing immigrant communities in Texas, including challenging dangerous detention center conditions, providing know-your-rights training to immigrant communities, and litigating to protect immigrants’ civil rights.

The Inspiration

Need Addressed By Project: 
This project directly responds to the needs of immigrants in El Paso and South Texas by addressing civil rights violations, including dangerous conditions at detention centers, due process violations during the detention and/or removal process, and arbitrary policies regarding the certification of U visas for immigrants who are the victims of crimes. The project will also provide much-needed know-your-rights training for immigrant communities and their families, so that individuals are empowered to exercise their rights and identify abusive unconstitutional behavior in the immigration system.
Highlights to Date: 
In the first six months, Brooke has:
• Provided direct representation to five detained clients in their removal proceedings
• Provided know your rights trainings to over fifty community members
• Investigated unconstitutional conditions at two immigrant detention centers
• Contributed to four high impact litigation cases
What's Next: 
In the next six months, Brooke plans to:
• Expand know your rights trainings
• Challenge ongoing constitutional violations at immigrant detention centers
• Work with community coalitions to develop responses to ongoing threats to the border immigrant community
• Challenge the arbitrary denial of U visa certifications
The Right Person For This Project: 
Brooke is the right person for the project because:
• She has been working with immigrants from all over the world for over five years and came to law school for the purpose of becoming an immigration attorney
• During law school, Brooke worked with multiple immigration service providers to serve indigent clients, and interned at a holistic immigration non-profit where she learned the value and intricacies of providing wrap-around care to vulnerable clients

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