The New Beginnings Project assists immigrants and their children who are victims of domestic violence or other serious crime.
The New Beginnings Project provides assistance to victims of domestic abuse or serious crimes who qualify through the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) or the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (VTVPA, more commonly known by the "U" and "T" visas it provides). These two legal protections help vulnerable women (nearly all applicants are female) and their dependent children to come forward and escape violent relationships or situations where they would otherwise not do so because of their undocumented or expired immigration status.
VAWA provides an avenue for legal immigration status to victims of domestic abuse who suffer at the hands of a legal permanent resident or U.S. citizen spouse. Without this special legislation these victims would rely on their abuser for legal status and thus could not end the abusive relationship without risking losing their legal status.
VTVPA provides visas to persons who are victims of serious crimes such as rape, torture, trafficking, incest, domestic violence, sexual assault, prostitution, female genital mutilation, kidnapping, and others. Victims must provide information about the crime to law enforcement authorities and a designated entity must certify that the applicant's cooperation with either an investigation or prosecution of the defendant was or is likely to be helpful.
The New Beginning Project began as an effort to address the problem of domestic abuse and violence against vulnerable immigrant populations more holistically and intentionally. In addition to providing legal support to qualifying immigrants, program staff conducts outreach and education regarding these legal protections to the legal, law enforcement, judicial, and victim advocate communities.
Important: If you or someone you know might qualify for services under this program, please have them call (651)641-1011. Due to the vulnerable situations many victims are in, ILCM prioritizes these cases and strives to screen them through an individual intake process. To avoid being sent through the regular intake process, be sure to mention that you are seeking services through the New Beginnings Project when you call.