Northwest Immigrant Rights Project

In 2017-2018, The Mother House Fund will direct grant funding to support organizations providing legal advocacy and support for mothers and their children who are being targeted by inhumane immigration and deportation policies. After researching and meeting with a variety of organizations serving immigrant communities in the PNW, we have decided to make a significant grant to support Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP) and their "Keeping Families Together" program.

Our recent $35,000 grant will support the team at NWIRP delivering on the requirements of the Murdock Trust "Keeping Families Together" challenge grant. This challenge grant required NWIRP raise $35,000 in 2017 to receive a Murdock Trust matching grant, and The Mother House Fund was honored to donate the full amount so NWIRP could meet their goal. We consider this a seed grant and look forward to collaborating with others in the community to help NWIRP meet their next challenge requirement of raising $79,000 in 2018.

Immigrant mothers facing deportation in immigration court, and particularly those held in immigration detention, are in critical need of legal representation to help them be released from detention and gain safety and reunification with their children. A grant from The Mother House Fund will help NWIRP to meet that need.

Today in Washington State, 2,397 women with children have cases pending in immigration court, and 25% of these do not have an attorney representing them. The majority of these women and children are asylum-seekers and are not held in immigration detention. When people have legal representation in immigration court, they are far more likely to win their cases. Of the women and children who have been deported, more than 50% did not have legal representation. These statistics come from the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse of Syracuse University, which monitors immigration cases nationally.

NWIRP's Tacoma office reports that 10% of the detainees at the Northwest Detention Center are women. The Detention Center has about 1,375 detainees today, so approximately 137 women are currently detained at NWDC as of December 2017. According to the directing attorney of NWIRP's Tacoma office, the vast majority of these women are mothers.

NWIRP client family

With funding provided through the Mother House Fund, NWIRP will be able to provide full direct legal representation to five mothers held at the Northwest Detention Center over one year, helping them gain the opportunity to be free from detention, protected from deportation, and reunited with their children and families. Learn more: www.nwirp.org.

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