Thursday, March 11, 2010
While the last three days have been a lot of client interaction and outreach, today was primarily a paperwork day for most of us (Aman and Christine took yet another trip to Little Haiti to meet with their clients for follow up information). We spent a large chunk of time today in the clinic office working on typing up and actually preparing the applications that will be sent in. While a lot of the cases were fairly straight forward, several of them were complicated by criminal records. Olga and Melissa (and JoNel for a brief interlude) spent a lot of time with us looking into what exactly they did, what counts as a felony, and if there was any way around those convictions for TPS purposes. It was once again totally depressing to determine that a client was ineligible because of their criminal past; it seems like a major flaw in the TPS program.
I think that by the end of the day we were all a little surprised by how emotionally involved we are in our cases. After intake and spending that much time with our clients and learning so much about them, filling out the TPS application feels like a LOT more then just paperwork. Hopefully we can get in a lot of hours tomorrow (with yet another trip to Little Haiti!) and be able to send them off; I know that we will all feel gratified (and be able to sleep at night) to see our clients applications to the end.
Ed. note: Dana Isaac is a second-year law student at the University of San Francisco.