About the Immigration Law Clinic

The Immigration Law Clinic consists of eight students and a director who represent individuals who would otherwise lack legal representation and collaborate with local, regional and national organizations to advocate for the rights of immigrants.

Representing Individual Clients

The right to government-appointed counsel does not exist in the immigration context, even though the cases often involve extraordinarily high stakes.  As the Supreme Court once put it, deportation may result in “loss of both property and life, or of all that makes life worth living.” (Ng Fung Ho v. White, 259 U.S. 276, 284 (1922)).  Students in the Immigration Law Clinic have represented low-income individuals in a broad range of immigration matters, including people forced to remain in detention while pursuing claims for political asylum, appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, young people seeking Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and families separated as a result of draconian immigration policies.

Collaborations to Build Justice

Immigration impacts individuals, families and entire communities, and people across the State of Washington and the country have long come together to call for just and humane immigration policies.  The Immigration Law Clinic collaborates with a range of organizations to provide legal and other strategic support aimed at creating transformation and change.

Acquiring Skills and Pursuing Justice

By representing individual clients and partnering with organizations working in the immigration arena, Immigration Law Clinic students acquire core lawyering skills, build professional identity and judgment, and explore what it means to be a lawyer advocating for social justice in the current era.

Immigration Law Clinic News

Clinic Collaborates on Report Regarding Health and Safety in Immigration Detention

On December 14, 2020, the Clinic released a report, “Missed Opportunities: State and Local Authority to Regulate the Northwest Detention Center.” Authored by Clinic students Cheri Barrett (LAW ’21), Wendy S. Martinez Hurtado (LAW ’22) and Professor Jennifer Lee Koh, the report describes the authority of state and local entities to regulate the Northwest Detention Center (NWDC), a for-profit immigration detention facility in Tacoma, WA. The report serves as an appendix to the University of Washington Center for Human Rights report, “Covid-19 and Health Standards at the Northwest Detention Center,” which highlights the failure of the NWDC to control the spread of Covid-19 at the facility and is part of an ongoing series which has examined topics including sanitation of food and laundry, allegations of medical neglect and use of solitary confinement.