Justice for Our Neighbors needs Spanish-English interpreters now!

February 1, 2023 | | Racial Justice, Journey of Hope, GNJ News

JFON legal assistant Bonn Aure (left) and lead attorney Abe Hobson.

Justice for Our Neighbors of the Delaware Valley (JFON-DV), which provides affordable immigration legal services to low-income clients in our region, urgently needs Spanish-English language interpreters now to help busloads of migrants arriving in Philadelphia seeking asylum.

The small agency, providing free or low-cost legal aid to immigrants and refugees with limited means, is supported by a United Methodist partnership of the Eastern Pennsylvania, Greater New Jersey and Peninsula-Delaware conferences.

A handful of attorneys and legal assistants work and meet with clients at their headquarters at Haws Avenue UMC in Norristown, Pa, and at intake clinics in UM churches around the tri-conference area.”

The Rev. Tom Lank

“We are being asked to provide legal orientation sessions and small-group consultations to the new arrivals,” said the Rev. Tom Lank, Interim Executive Director and a Deacon in the GNJ Conference. “Generally, we get about 24-hours advance notice when a bus will arrive. Then we provide orientations the next morning at the welcome center set up in North Philadelphia. But having volunteers who can do Spanish-English translation is a real need.”

JFON is one of about six organizations sharing in this work. “We will be on call for a week at a time in a five-week rotation,”said Lank. Their first week of on-call service will be Feb. 5-11. The second week will be March 12-18, and so on.

“We have the legal staff to be able to handle these consultations. But we are lacking in available Spanish-speaking, bilingual interpreters who can be on call for us during the week,” Lank explained.  “We may call them our Rapid Response Interpretation Team. Please help us, so we can welcome and seek justice for our new neighbors.”

If you can help, please contact JFON promptly at (814) 343-3260 or ​director@jfondv.org.

NOTE: Justice for Our Neighbors of the Delaware Valley is part of the national Immigration Law & Justice Network, formerly named Justice for Our Neighbors and created by the UM Committee on Relief (UMCOR). Visit JFON-DV’s website to learn more. Also, read “As JFON’s immigration cases grow, so does its need for help.