In recent weeks the front pages of newspapers and lead stories in the news have been dominated by one feature – Immigration. Politicians are trying to gain attention by exploiting the fear surrounding the subject. Without a doubt the immigration issue and arguments have been in the center of the political, social and media debate this year.
In recent weeks, newspapers and other media have focused heavily on the topic of immigration and its use by presidential campaigns to further their own agenda. Without a doubt, immigration has been at the center of political, social, and media debate this year, and the way it is covered tells a story about news outlets’ own agendas rather than the real story that needs to be told, that of the immigrants themselves.
We have witnessed that the tone of some media coverage has been generalized and has characterized immigrants as unwanted, criminal, penniless, noncontributing elements of our society. In some cases, immigrants have been depicted as a threat to U.S. resources and security. Such representations do not recognize the positive impact and contributions that immigrants have long brought to this country.
Given the current political climate in the United States, including the rise of right-wing, anti-immigrant movements, immigration has become a very serious topic in our nation. And it will be debated more and more as presidential campaigns continue to ramp up.
In the meantime, immigration authorities seem to have more applications than they can possibly process in a timely manner. Now more than ever the political pressure on this topic makes it urgent for people with no official immigration status to regularize their standing as soon as possible. Meanwhile, society must push to improve the broken immigration system, especially for the purpose of keeping families intact and improving our economy and lifestyle.
Unfortunately not all of the undocumented individuals in this country will qualify to apply for a visa, a work permit, or resident immigrant status. But there are many different options for becoming lawful within the system. Sadly, parties seeking legal help with immigration issues sometimes fall prey to individuals who lack experience in that field or who charge excessive fees. Following advice from inexpert friends and relatives, or from individuals posing as legal advisers, can negatively impact an immigrant’s case. It can even lead to deportation. Each case is unique, and it is important to fully understand how various circumstances may affect any one person’s chances of remaining in the United States.
That is where the Binational Institute of Human Development can help. The Binational Institute is a community-based, nonprofit organization that works for the better integration of immigrants into our society. Our mission is to empower immigrants and serve as a bridge between their past experience and new place of residence. We provide legal assistance, integration, educational, and cultural programs, small-business development services, and other assistance for immigrants. In doing so we strive to ensure that all immigrants find acceptance, comfort, support and achieve growth, in their new home.
In March 2015, the Binational Institute opened its new Legal Immigration Center. The Center offers immigrants assistance from experienced, considerate attorneys for very affordable fees. It has already aided hundreds of people from Mexico and other countries in Latin America, Europe, and Asia to improve their immigration experience and to develop within U.S. society. At the Center, we focus on staying current with legal developments in the U.S. immigration system and using this knowledge not only to represent our clients to our best ability, but also to advocate for all immigrants.
The Center is anchored by two exceptional attorneys with more than 55 years of combined experience—Senior Immigration Legal Counsel Lisa Nosek, Esq., and our Senior Legal Counsel Jack Weinrauch. Ms. Nosek has 17 years of experience working at leading Chicago law firms on immigration cases and representing clients in immigration court. Mr. Weinrauch is former Chief Administrative Judge for Cook County, the second largest county in the United States.
Since its inception, the Immigration Legal Center has shown a unique and enduring commitment to the people it represents. Our legal counsel and administrative staff are dedicated to offering clients the most accessible and personable immigration assistance possible. We work to take the fear out of the immigration process, which can be complicated and intimidating. We make sure that our clients feel informed and comfortable, explaining all the steps along the way and reassuring them that they are not alone.
We believe that the three basic pillars of our service—professionalism, affordability, and integrity, are fundamental in assisting the immigrant community to integrate into our society. Based on these principles, the Binational Institute/Legal Immigration Center is proud to assist its clients in legal matters such as:
- Consultations to establish eligibility for immigration and naturalization process
- Advance Parole/Travel Documents I-131
- Applications for permanent residence
- Applications for refugees, asylums,
- Applications for Travel Documents and Re-entry Permits
- Business Visas
- Change of Status
- Deportation and Removal Defense
- Diversity Visa Lottery VISA Online Application & Registration
- Educational Visas
- Employment Visas
- Family-based petitions and visas
- Fiancé Visas
- immigration court proceedings.
- Immigration for Same-Sex Couples
- Inadmissibility waivers (pardons)
- Investor Visas
- Naturalization and Citizenship Applications
- Non-Immigrant Visas
- Tourist Visas
- U Visas
- Visa Extensions and Changes
If you or a friend, relative, or associate should need any immigration advice or representation, we would like to offer our assistance. If you know of somebody who may benefit from our services, please pass this information on to them, and do not hesitate to call or email us or visit our website. We are looking forward to talking to you soon.
Binational Institute of Human Development