Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $800,000)
Colorado Legal Services (CLS) and its partner the Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network (RMIAN) will provide direct legal services to trafficked persons in the state. Legal services will be provided in a trauma-informed and culturally responsive manner and will include, but are not limited to, advocacy within the criminal justice system, civil litigation, preparation of immigration petitions, family reunification, assistance in seeking protective orders, support in sealing criminal records, where appropriate, name changes and advice and representation in domestic relations matters and public benefits advocacy. The project will allow CLS and RMIAN to fill several needs by serving the number of victims identified through successful outreach efforts; maintaining the level of response currently provided under protocols established with the Colorado Network to End Human Trafficking (CoNEHT) and National Human Trafficking Hotline (NHTH) to provide legal assessments and orientations with identified potential victims of human trafficking; educating law enforcement agencies and other professionals about how to identify and respond to trafficking, including referrals to services, and about survivors’ civil legal needs; ensuring that CLS and RMIAN provide trauma-informed and culturally responsive services; meeting the need for more in-depth legal services beyond immigration advocacy and collecting data and participating in any evaluation activities to ensure the project is meeting stated goals and objectives. These services will promote victims’ safety, independence, self-sufficiency, and well-being.