Thursday, August 7, 2014
From the NY Immigration Coalition:
Yesterday, Governor Cuomo signed into law the Immigrant Assistance Service Enforcement Act, a critical piece of legislation that the NYIC worked closely for months with our members, allies, and elected officials to pass.
This legislation, the first of its kind in New York State and a model for the rest of the country, takes direct action against unscrupulous notaries and protects New York's immigrants from fraud – while also laying the foundation for better immigration services across New York State.
The Act will protect and empower immigrants by the following:
Ensures that only attorneys and Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) accredited representatives can provide legal services;
Enhances translation requirements for providing immigration legal services;
Increases civil penalties and creates two new crimes for immigration fraud violations;
Creates the New York State Office for New Americans as an official Executive Agency with a mandate to assist communities in accessing legal services, ESOL and civic classes, job training and more to further empower New York immigrant communities.
With this legislation firmly in place, we will continue to build on this foundation to cut down further on fraud, and strengthen the network of legitimate immigration service providers across the state.
Kudos to Governor Cuomo, Assemblymember Marco Crespo, and our many allies – Catholic Charities of New York, Make the Road New York, the New York Legal Assistance Group, New Immigrant Community Empowerment (NICE), the American Immigration Lawyers Association and others - for helping make this Act a reality!