You’re 15 years old. You have a ten year old sister. You come home from school and learn from a neighbor that Immigration & Customs Enforcement has picked up your parents. Your mom and dad are in custody and set to be deported to a country you have never seen. You are an American citizen.

What happens to you now?  

What happens to your sister?

LCYC provides critical legal services to kids experiencing separation from parents due to changes in immigration policy and enforcement. In partnership with Northwest Immigrant Rights Project and Kids In Need of Defense, LCYC also represents immigrant youth who were abused, abandoned or neglected by their parent(s) and may be eligible for a unique type of immigration relief, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status. 


Immigrant safety plan of youth and children

In addition to direct services, LCYC Staff Attorney, Midori "Chach" Duarte White, designed an "Immigrant Safety Plan for Youth and Children" to empower immigrant parents and reduce childhood trauma.  Many thanks to the students and alumni from the University of Washington and Seattle University School of Law Latina/o Student Associations who helped to create this critical resource. 

To access LCYC's "Immigrant Safety Plan for Youth and Children," or to learn more about how to proactively prepare for potential encounters with ICE and King County resources for immigrant families please click HERE.


special immigrant juvenile status

LCYC partners with Kids In Need of Defense (KIND, formerly Volunteer Advocates for Immigrant Justice) and Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP) to help meet the needs of unaccompanied immigrant children.  Attorneys from KIND and NWIRP review requests for services and assess the best form of immigration relief available to the child.  If the child has experienced parental abuse, neglect or abandonment, the child may be eligible to change his or her immigration standing by applying for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS).  As a prerequisite to requesting SIJS, the child must first be found by a state court to be "dependent" under the state laws. Dependency cases, or child welfare cases, are the primary area of LCYC's legal practice.

If the child and their immigration attorney decide to pursue an application for SIJS, KIND and NWIRP will call upon LCYC, among others, to represent the youth in the state court dependency matter.  The time that LCYC spends meeting with the youth, connecting with the immigration attorney, drafting and filing the petition for dependency, is all uncompensated by the county, state and federal government.   

LCYC has assisted youth in seeking SIJS since we opened our doors.  


estado especial de inmigrante juvenil

LCYC se asocia con Niños Necesitados de Protección (KIND, anteriormente Voluntario defensores de Justicia para Inmigrantes) y El Proyecto para los Derechos del Inmigrante (NWIRP) para ayudar a satisfacer las necesidades de los niños inmigrantes no acompañados. Los abogados de KIND y NWIRP examinan las solicitudes de servicios y evaluan la mejor forma de alivio migratorio a disposición del niño. Si el niño ha sido abusado descuidado o abandonado de los padres, el niño puede estar elegible para cambiar su posición de inmigración si se escribe a la solicitud del Estado Especial de Menores Inmigrantes (SIJS). Como requisito previo para solicitantes de SIJS, el niño primero debe ser considerada por un tribunal del estado de ser "dependiente" según los leyes del estado. Los casos de dependencia, o casos de bienestar infantil, son la principal área de la práctica legal de LCYC.

Si el niño y su abogado/a de inmigración decidan perseguir una solicitud de SIJS, KIND y NWIRP invocarán LCYC, entre otros, para representar la juventud en materia de dependencia en la corte estatal. El tiempo que pasa LCYC reuniéndose con los jóvenes, que conecta con el abogado de inmigración, la redacción y la petición de la dependencia, todo no es compensado por el condado, el estado y el gobierno federal. LCYC ha ayudado a los jóvenes en la búsqueda de SIJS desde que abrimos nuestras puertas.