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Legal Aid Group Gets Grant to Assist South Texas Immigrants


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There are precious few advocates for the immigrants held at the two family detention centers in South Texas. But one such group recently got a boost to continue its work.

The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES), received a $20,000 grant from the Texas Bar Foundation so that the group can continue to “provide children and mothers who were released from the Karnes and Dilley Family Detention Centers with legal services.”

Since the summer of 2014, RAICES has provided free legal counsel to thousands of families held in South Texas. Many of them reside in the state after their release.

“We are very grateful to the Texas Bar Foundation for recognizing the importance of our work on behalf of these vulnerable populations. With this grant we will now be able to make a more concerted effort in linking released families, residing in the State of Texas, with legal support and services.” Jonathan Ryan, executive director of RAICES, said in a news release.

Detainees at the centers, which are run by the for-profit Geo Group and Corrections Corporations of America, have reported deplorable conditions, including scant access to adequate medical services. Whether it's legal to hold children at the centers under such conditions is currently being debated in court.

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