Giving Tuesday 2019

Dear Friend,
The U Visa was created almost twenty years ago as a way to help undocumented victims of crime, and to encourage them to cooperate with law enforcement. For domestic violence survivors, the U Visa creates a path to safety and independence by allowing them to work legally and by protecting them from the threat of deportation and separation from their children – a powerful threat in the hands of an abusive partner. The U Visa also strengthens the rule of law, by encouraging people who may otherwise be fearful law enforcement to cooperate in the prosecution of serious crimes. Ascend Justice helps clients file about 25 U Visa applications each year.
Last month, the federal government announced an increase to a number of fees associated with immigration processes, including one paid by many of our U Visa clients. In 2020, the fee for I-192 filings will increase from $930 to $1415 – for each person in the family who needs to file. For most Ascend Justice clients, this fee is prohibitive, effectively barring them from utilizing a remedy that was designed for their protection. 
This result – the nullification of an immigration remedy for people who cannot afford thousands in fees – is not an accident. In fact, it has been called “an unprecedented weaponization of government fees.”
Tomorrow on Giving Tuesday, we will ask you to support families impacted by this weaponization of fees. First, we hope you’ll donate. Our goal is to raise $14,150, enough for our agency to cover the fees for 10 clients. We’ll tell you the stories of families we’ve already served to show how raising the cost of safety impacts real people. Second, if you’d like to express your thoughts about this proposal, you can register a public comment here until December 16.
We are so grateful for your support on Giving Tuesday and every day. We look forward to partnering with you to ensure that victims of violence continue to be protected.
Margaret R. Duval
Executive Director
Ascend Justice