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2009 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Immigration Equality

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Crime & Law, Ethnic & Immigrant Centers, Human Services, Immigration, Lesbian & Gay Rights, LGBTQ, Public Interest Law

Mission: Immigration Equality addresses the widespread discriminatory impact of immigration laws on the lives of lesbians, gay men, and people with HIV through education, outreach, advocacy and direct legal services.

Programs: Immigration equality represents more lgbt asylum seekers than any other agency or firm in the united states. Since 2008, immigration equality has won asylum for 271 lgbt and hiv-positive people from 64 countries. In 2010, 106 individuals won asylum: 43% were from the caribbean, 24% from south & central america, 16% from eastern europe, 11% from africa, 5% from the middle east, 1% from asia. Immigration equality's legal team vets potential clients and matches them with pro bono attorneys at elite law firms. In 2010, nearly 40 firms donated more than $13 million in legal services - representing 70% of immigration equality's caseload under the legal staff's supervision. As a result, immigration equality effectively leverages one hundred-fold every foundation dollar invested in the organization.

immigration equality has played a substantive role in the department of homeland security/ immigration and customs enforcement-ngo enforcement working group. Immigration equality has been meeting regularly with staff from immigration and customs enforcement (ice) to provide feedback on detention reform efforts. When the working group submitted extensive comments for improving the performance based national detention standards, these included ensuring access to appropriate medical care for transgender and hiv-positive detainees and implementing staff training to minimize harassment of lgbt detainees. These recommendations were included because immigration equality was at the table.

Community Stories

30 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Donor

Rating: 5

Thank you very much. I have heard that some people just can not be accepted into they Pro Bono System asylum program because they cases are not as straight forward 'easy' as they wish they were. Others expressed concerns that they do not look like those asylum seekers on the front page of the website. I also saw on the website that they advise to the asylum office, by using deductive method what I'm implying here? I wonder whether or not it means that they give advise against your case if they do not like you, then it is not good. Who know it for certain, please share the information with other gay people here. You probably can get help if you can sex reassignment surgery, you also more likely than not will get help if you marry someone of your own gender or if you can find a good stylist who will decorate your look, for female its easy but need to cut your hair short, for man it would be helpful to have few earrings and color the hairs)long hairs - if you can do any of those, sometimes simple things it can save you from lots of troubles and prejudices down the road. I am striving to learn more and really do my best to come to the right conclusion. Any more thoughts, only practical advice please?
Because I like the idea and my knowledge is limited I will start with 5 stars.

5

Client Served

Rating: 5

When Your Baby Won’t Stop Crying !!!
Yes, they advertise themselves and it all looks a bit theatrical and maybe they help to some and screw others. But they are changing the game and achieved few goals.
Few points below you may find helpful:
first of all Immigration Equality is working with FBI and if they want to fail you they will fail you. Should you be scared - never, should you fight for your rights - always.
Second, do a bit of a research on those who work for them and who is the former commander in chief and where she works now and what is her agenda - it i crucial.
Furtermore, Apply at the border - those who are illegally trying to cross the border have a priority over those who come in the country through visa procedures;- This is new, and if you want to be at the top of the line just apply at the border would be my suggestion.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 3

Immigration Equality's heart is in the right place, but they could do a lot more with the resources they have. They doggedly pursue a limited number of avenues to fulfill their goals, even when it's clear to most that it's a dead end, while not exploring other options. For example, one of their goals is allowing same-sex binational couples the same immigration rights in the US that opposite-sex binational couples enjoy. The organization focused on including same-sex binational couples in a comprehensive immigration reform bill, while giving little attention or blatantly ignoring other options like visas or standalone bills.

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 2

while IE does a lot of amazing work; they do reject clients some of whom cannot get past reception if they do not fit certain criteria. I am a vocal critic of Immigration equality's strategy. Instead of being open to hearing they have shut me out of their Blogs and website to ensure that their strategy is not questioned by the public at large.

Review from Guidestar

19

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Immigration Equality is a phenomenal org. They did and are doing great work for the LGBT community, specifically for the LGBT folks who have foreign-born partners. The immigration right is an integral part of the rights that are granted to married people. While the straight people take it for granted, the LGBT Americans have to fight teeth and nails to get the equal treatment under the law so that our families are not torn apart. We know this is gross inequality. Thankfully, with organization like IE, we see hopes ahead of us. IE, bravo!! Keep up the good work!

19

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Immigration Equality is an excellent organization. Immigration for the GLBT community is such a difficult and tricky area and there are many couples and individuals facing impossible choices. The information provided via their website and that which you obtain in calling them is up to date and relevant. They also have extensive information on how you can get involved in immigration issues for the GLBT community. We will not get important legislation passed e.g. UAFA, unless we all take action to raise the profile of these issues. The Blog is very good, in partiucarl the community of responese as issues are raised. They also compile stories in particular on Bi-national couples, and that has been important to me as I am in a relationship with a non-US citizen for 10 years and our legal status is non-existence.

19

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Excellent organization that has been doing a phenomenal job with limited resources. The director, policy team and other staff are all fantastic and have dramatically raised the profile of immigration discrimination against gay couples in recent months.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Immigration equality has been a great information source for gay couples in bi-national relationships. They have fought for passage of the Uniting American Families Act which would allow same sex bi-national couples to sponsor their partners for immigration. Bi-national couples are a small minority within the gay community and immigration equality has given us a voice in Washington. As an American living exiled in a foreign country for the last 3 years, Immigration Equality has given us hope that one day my partner of 14 years and I can return to the place we called home, Los Angeles. Immigration Equality has also led the fight to repeal the travel ban for HIV positive people and actually got the Bush administration to lift the ban. As of today the ban still has not been lifted even though the legislation was signed into law by President Bush. Immigration Equality has continued to push the Obama Administration to completely lift this ban.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Immigration Equality is a small, hard working organization that fights for some of the most important rights the LGBT and HIV+ community is deprived off. It's been very successful in its battle against the absurd discrimination against HIV positive immigrants and visitors by pushing the lifting of the HIV ban. It's helped many immigrants who fled their home countries where their life was in danger because their sexual identity. And the staff of this organization works very hard to give gay Americans the basic right to live with their foreign partner in the US and not being forced to choose between their family and the country they love.

5

Donor

Rating: 5

Immigration Equality has taken on a huge task of representing and fighting for LGBT community working to change the immigration laws. The discrimination LGBT community is facing from INS is not covered in the media and talked about as much as other gay issues that have become part of the political and social landscape, but affects too many in the community, and almost everybody was touched by it directly or indirectly. This issue separates gay couples and families sending foreign partner out of the country and causes a lot of stress and pain in the process. Immigration Equality is our very competent voice and is making a huge difference in changing the laws and keeping gay binational couples together.

5 NFrois

Donor

Rating: 5

Great organization. Working hard to give us all hope that soon we will be all counted as equal by immigration laws.

5

Donor

Rating: 5

This site has been an invaluable resource to those of us in a bi-national relationship, having to live in another country. It keeps up up to date with what is happening with LGBT issues in America, how the UAFA is progressing, and it fights equally for all - not just people like me and my wife, living in a country we don't want to. I've been donating for a while now and will continue to do so, because the support they offer is indiscriminate and priceless. ImmigrationEquality deserves your vote!!

6

Donor

Rating: 5

I try to check their blog as much as I can and support their fight to make our country a place where every American share the same rights. Keep up the great work!

6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

this is a great organization with a goal of uniting bi national couples like myself and also helping individuals with hiv being able to visit and stay in USA

4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Immigration Equality has been a great group that helps couples like myself keep the faith that I too can sponser my partner. This group is so suppportive to our cause and gets out our story.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

Immigration Equality has been the best source of immigration information for the LGBT community that I have found online. Right now I am going through an asylum process, and thanks to this organization, I can be sure that all the steps that I am taking are the right ones. The information provided by immigration equality brings peace and hope to my life everyday.

4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

An amazing organization that provides accurate and up-to-date information about the world of immigration for the LGBT community. As a foriegn national in a 5 year relationship with U.S citizen I am always checking for updates on their website,with the hope that one day I will see what immigration equality has been fighting for...equal immigration rights for the LGBT community.

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Hard working, awesome organization. Hopefully their hard work will soon come to fruition. Keep up the strong work!! Our future depends on it.

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Without Immigration Equality, my partner and I would have probably lost hope a long time ago. But instead, the hard work that Immigration Equality does to change US immigration laws the fundamentally discriminate against LGBT individuals has given hope to tens of thousands of people like myself that are forced to live outside the US. Aiming to change immigration laws is a daunting task that Immigration Equality has stayed dedicated to and has the possibility of helping us realize. And now with a record number of congressional sponsors behind the UAFA, we are one step closer to making history - legislative history that will end decades of discrimination in the US. I am thankful for everything that Immigration Equality does and am hopeful that one day we will all receive the benefits granted to our heterosexual counterparts.

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I will put it in a few words. Immigration Equality has given me and my partner HOPE! Hope that we can be together. They have been doing a wonderful job helping with the UAFA cause for many years, and now they are getting closer and closer of making it happen!