Mission: The coalition for humane immigrant rights (chirla) was founded in 1986. Chirla is a california leader with national impact made of diverse immigrant families and individuals who act as agents of social change to achieve a world with freedom of mobility, full human rights, and true participatory democracy. Chirlas mission is to achieve a just society fully inclusive of immigrants. Chirla organizes and serves individuals, institutions and coalitions to build power, transform public opinion, and change policies to achieve full human, civil and labor rights. Guided by the power, love, and vision of our community, chirla embraces and drives progressive social change. For over 30 years, chirlas innovative programming in community education, community organizing, legal services, civic engagement, policy and advocacy, and leadership development for youth has served the immigrant communities of the los angeles region. Chirla was formed in response to the immigration reform and control act (irca
Programs: Policy and advocacy - chirla works to advance a local, state and national agenda that wins human, civil and labor rights for immigrant and their families. In 2016, chirla was a leader in the successful passage of sb 1015 (leyva) domestic worker bill of rights, which permanently preserves overtime protections for californias privately hired domestic workers. Chirla was also a leader in supporting the fight for street vendors ordinance, which was unanimously approved by the los angeles city council on february 15, 2017. The street vendors ordinance decriminalizes all street vending penalties, drops misdemeanors and will develop a policy for vendors to obtain work permits. The street vendors ordinance will protect over 50,000 immigrant workers from being targets of deportations and will serve to keep families together. Chirla was a leader in advocating the city of los angeles to create the los angeles justice fund, a $10 million legal defense fund to provide legal coordination for immigrants facing deportation proceedings in los angeles. In addition, chirlas team was also instrumental in the creation of the ad hoc immigrant integration committee in the los angeles city council and the los angeles county office of immigrant integration.
legal immigration services - chirla's legal services department has helped thousands of individuals to become citizens, reunite with their families, or apply to become a deferred actiion for childhood arrival (daca) beneficiary. Chirla is recognized by the us department of justice (doj)to provide immigration legal services at low-cost. These services include u-visas (visas for victims of crime). Violence against women's act (vawa), family petitions, deportation defense, daca applications and renewals and citizenship services. Chirla's legal staff includes licensed attorneys, doj-accredited representatives, juris doctors and trained paralegals. Chirlas legal staff provided the following services: 807 daca applications, 493 daca renewal applications, 780 dapa screenings/intakes, 562 naturalization screenings/intakes, 286 naturalization applications, 400 vawa/u-visa screenings and 25 initial applications, 300 referrals to other forms of immigration relief, 780 family visa screenings and 40 initial applications, and 390 referrals for individuals seeking asylum services.
organizing - chirla organizes a membership base to harness the power of a collective voice. Over the years, chirla has applied principles of community organizing leadership development, strategies and tactics. With a robust and organized membership, chirla coordinates actions to win pro-immigrant policies that make a difference in the lives of members. Chirla organizes its membership base into the following committees: household worker committee, street vendor committee, as well as student committees for the california dream network at 35 colleges and universities statewide, and wise up! At 10 los angeles and pasadena area high schools. Additionally chirla organizes members into regional committees. These committees meet monthly to plan campaigns and participate in chirla actions such as marches, forums, and town halls, as well as traveling to sacramento and washington, d. C. To participate in non-lobbying education of elected officials about the issues affecting low-wage immigrant workers and students and their families. Chirla was a leader in the successful passage of sb 1015 (leyva) domestic worker bill of rights, which permanently preserves overtime protections for californias privately hired domestic workers. Chirla was also a leader in supporting the fight for street vendors ordinance, which the city of los angeles approved on january 31, 2017. The street vendors ordinance decriminalizes all street vending penalties, drops misdemeanors and will develop a policy for vendors to obtain work permits. This policy win will protect over 50,000 immigrant workers from being targets of deportations and will serve to keep families together.