Over 30 years ago, The Bar Association of San Francisco’s (BASF) Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS) started the Attorney of the Day Program (AOD) at the request of the U.S. Immigration Court in San Francisco. Experienced immigration attorneys qualified to volunteer for the AOD were calendared to assist unrepresented immigrants in removal proceedings at their Master Calendar hearings to ensure a minimum level of due process. At the time, one to two attorneys were able to handle the daily dockets. In 2014, with the beginning of fast-tracked immigration proceedings called “surge” dockets, the need for AOD representation increased four-fold, and today many children and families appear at Master Calendar proceedings pro se.
In order to better accommodate expansion of new programs, the growing need for immigration services in San Francisco and the Bay Area, and the receipt of new funding, BASF’s immigration programs have been moved within the Justice & Diversity Center (JDC) of BASF, a 501c3 nonprofit.
JDC is now the lead on several immigration-related consortium projects, including the San Francisco Immigrant Legal Defense Collaborative (SFILDC), providing legal oversight, mentoring and training, and fiscal sponsorship.
For more information about SFILDC, visit www.sfbar.org/sfildc.