By Mayor Adler
This is a big week for Austin — and I’m officially declaring Tuesday as Austin Everybody Chill Out Day. Though any day is a good day to take a deep breath, relax and focus on the task ahead, it’s especially salient for us on Tuesday because that’s the day we all get our first look at the initial draft of the CodeNext map.
The map will be the first round of applying new zoning classifications citywide as part of the overdue rewrite of Austin’s horribly outdated land-use code, which governs what can be built where. The CodeNext process will help us manage our explosive growth while preserving what makes Austin special. We have to act and need to begin now — and this map is where we start. Continue reading
A safe community is a just community. We want to be sure that Austinites who may be impacted by recent events continue to feel safe and have access to legal services.
Legal Help/Ayuda Legal
- Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid, Inc.
888-988-9996 (Main Office)
provides free legal services to low income residents; represents migrant and seasonal farm workers; operates defender programs in several Southwest Texas counties; call Monday through Thursday 8am-8pm; Friday 8am-6pm
- American Gateways
314 E. Highland Mall Boulevard, Suite 501
Austin, TX 78752-3733
American Gateways has served the Central Texas immigrant community since 1987. American Gateways’ mission is “to chamption the dignity and human rights of refuges and immigrant survivors of persecution, torture, conflict, and human trafficking through exceptional immigrant legal services at no or low cost, education, and advocacy. Handles immigration matters including, but not limited to, asylum, VAWA petitions, citizenship, family-based visa petitions, detaineeesrights, TPS for Hondurans and immigrant victims of crime.
- Casa Marianella
512.385.5571 (Main Office)
“Casa Marianella is a volunteer-driven emergency homeless shelter in east Austin, serving recently-arrived immigrants and asylum seekers from around the world. In addition to shelter, Casa offers access to legal and medical resources, food, clothing, English classes and other resources.” “Provides immigration services (asylum, U-visas, VAWA, work permits, and adjustment of status) and other resources . . . legal clinic is located inside the community education center, 821 Gunter St., Austin 78702.”
- Volunteer Legal Services, Central Texas
“Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas helps low-income clients access the civil justice system by providing volunteer attorneys who donate free legal advice and representation, and by supporting and training those attorneys. Last year, VLS volunteer attorneys and staff provided nearly 5,000 clients with over 17,250 hours of free legal services.”
- Catholic Charities of Central Texas Immigration Legal Services
512.651.6100 (Main Office)
Hours of Operation: Monday-Friday, 8:30 – 5pm. Closed Noon-1. Closed on weekends.
“Catholic Charites of Central Texas provides low cost, high quality legal representation in immigration matter for our clients. Our Immigration Legal Services program has experienced attorneys and legal support staff to help with most immigration based needs. . . . Representation includes, but is not limited to: Family Based Immigration, Permanent Resident Card Replacement or Renewal, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, Visas for victims for crime of human trafficking, naturalization, [and] asylum.” “$35 initial consultation fee includes review of client eligibility for immigration benefits.”
- Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES)
1305 N. Flores Street
San Antonio, TX 78212
“Provides immigration related legal services for asylum seekers, unaccompanied minors, immigration detainees, and victims of domestic violence, crime and human trafficking.”
- University of Texas School of Law
727 East Dan Keeton St.
Austin, Texas 78705
“Students in the Immigration Clinic represent vulnerable low-income immigrants from all over the world before the immigration and federal courts and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).” Cases and projects include: challenging family detention, defending against removal and seeking status for migrants including asylum cases, assisting victims of domestic violence and other crimes, cancellation of removal and adjustment of status claims, citizenship claims, and work with DREAMers.
- St. Mary’s University School of Law
210.431.2596 (Main Office)
“Provides legal assistance through the law school’s clinic; . . . Immigration and Human Rights; cannot take cases requiring immediate attention. “
- Bernardo Kohler Center
Provides services to immigrant indiviuals including: “adjustment of status, asylum applications, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Deferred Action for Parents of American and Lawful Permanent Resident (DAPA), Employment authorization, NACARA, Removal hearings, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, T visas, Temporary Protected Status (TPS), U visas, Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) petitions.”
- Texas Civil Right Project
“Provide[s] free immigration services to immigrant survivors of abuse living in rural and underserved areas of Texas. Abuse does not have to be physical; it could also be psychological, sexual or economic.”
- Equal Justice Center
“Empowering low-income families, workers and communities to achieve fair treatment in the workplace, in the justice system, and in our shared community—regardless of immigration status.”
- Refugee Services of Texas
RST’s mission is “guided by the principles of human compassion and dignity, Refugee Services of Texas welcomes refugees, immigrants, and other displaced people and supports them in integrating and thriving in their new communities.” Services in Austin include “resettlement services, survivors of trafficking empowerment program (STEP), job readiness training and job placement, immigration services, medical case management, social adjustment services, counseling and wellness, refugee cash assistance, and English language training.