Monday, March 15, 2010

First Day

This year I'm participating in the clinic hosted at the University of Miami School of Law with the Health & Elder Law Clinic (HELC). This is the third week in the marathon of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) clinics they have been running.

Today our group trained on the background situation (why TPS? what is it? what is the urgent situation here in Miami that necessitates the clinics?), how to fill out TPS forms, and how to interview clients who are part of vulnerable populations.

After that, we chowed down on some delicious Haitian food at Chef Nicole. Yum! They have been gracious enough to let us use their restaurant as an intake site in the Little Haiti community (go local! support their business!).

At the end of the day, we split up into three groups -- the Haitian Creole speakers assisted HELC with interpreting phone messages and returning calls. The rest of us canvassed Little Haiti to get the word out about our TPS clinics tomorrow and Wednesday. I'm excited!

For those of you who don't know, there are a TON of fly-by-night operations set up in Little Haiti claiming they will get folks TPS, but will then charge them exorbitant fees and will not offer the option of fee waivers. HELC is not only representing client, but they are counseling on fee waivers, and following-up on the cases once they are sent to immigration.

More tomorrow!!


Ed. note: Evian White is a third year law student at the University of Miami.

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