Denver, Colorado (PressExposure) November 01, 2011 -- The first annual U Visa Outreach Day in will be taking place this Saturday, November 5th between 10am and 2pm in Eagle, Colorado.
This event is intended to help victims of crimes and spread awareness about U visas. Congress created the U visa--available to immigrant victims of a wide range of serious crimes--as part of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, recognizing that many of these individuals, with temporary or no legal status, fear that assisting law enforcement could lead to deportation.
According to immigration attorney Bryony Heise "U.S. Immigration Law allows for relief for victims of certain serious crimes, including domestic violence. The U-Visa is available to victims of certain crimes who have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse and are willing to assist in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) allows for female and male victims of domestic violence to apply for legal immigration status if their spouse is a U.S. citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident."
The U visa provides an avenue to legal status for immigrant crime victims who have suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of victimization; possess information regarding the activity; and offer a source of help in the investigation or prosecution.
U visas are beneficial because they help to identify and prosecute criminals; encourage reporting of crime, and overcome obstacles to victim cooperation. U visas also work to discourage criminals who believe they can target undocumented victims with impunity.
Approved U-visa petitioners receive temporary legal status and work authorization, which are valid for four years. After three years, U visa holders may apply for lawful permanent resident status (i.e., a "green card").
Immigration attorneys will be offering brief consultations and free legal advice regarding U visa eligibility.
The United Methodist Church of Eagle Valley is located at 333 Second Street, Eagle, CO 81631.