Stories of growth, stories of impact, stories from our community.

Michigan Immigrant Rights Center represents Michigan parents and children facing legal issues surrounding immigration

July 2nd, 2019 Back to Browse Stories

The Michigan Immigrant Rights Center (MIRC), a Community Foundation grantee, is a legal resource center for Michigan’s immigrant communities. MIRC works to build a thriving Michigan where immigrant communities experience equity and belonging.

As immigration rights have come to the forefront of national conversation, MIRC recently sent out a recent update, stating:

“In addition to representing unaccompanied children placed in Michigan foster care, MIRC also represents Michigan parents facing other immigration-related legal situations that lead to family separation. For example, when ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) detains an undocumented parent for driving without a license –this is family separation.”

“When a migrant farmworker parent loses his or her child after being charged with neglect for living in substandard, employer-provided housing–this is family separation. And when a parent is detained in a detention facility hundreds of miles away from his or her children, or when that facility doesn’t permit in-person visitation–this is family separation. We step into the breach.”

Through support from individuals and foundations such as CFSEM, MIRC has increased capacity by hiring ten new staff attorneys and six new staff for outreach, intake, policy, and administrative work since November 2016. This capacity-building allows MIRC to respond not only to the family separation crisis, but also to other significant efforts to restrict the rights of immigrants in this country.

For example, MIRC now fields free calls from every detainee and every respondent in immigration court in Detroit. They are each given MIRC’s intake number and MIRC provides legal information, advice about their rights and options, and/or referrals. This was not possible a year ago. MIRC is now a program of 30 staff, including attorneys, intake coordinators, legal assistants, policy staff, and an expanded leadership team.


If you would like to support grantmaking efforts for immigrant and refugee programming, please use the following donation form.