On April 5, 2019, PTR’s Co-Founder and Board Chair presented to attorneys at Las Americas Immigrant Advocacy Center in El Paso, Texas. Her presentation focused on the mental health impacts of trauma on both asylum seekers, as well as the courageous attorneys who represent them.
Researchers, advocates and attorneys working at the U.S./Mexico border witness the impacts of our immigration policies first-hand. In El Paso, over 90% of asylum seekers are denied asylum status, not because they aren’t often fleeing violence, but because barriers including language and lack of legal representation pose challenges to those who seek justice in the immigration process. Undocumented immigrants seeking legal status do not have the same legal right to representation as U.S. residents, which often leaves adults and children representing themselves in court, without an adequate understanding of the intricacies of the legal process. The attorneys at Las Americas are critical to allowing asylum seekers a fair chance at securing safety.