Program to focus on legal help for Haitians in time of crisis

On Wednesday, September 15, the American Bar Association will sponsor an online roundtable panel of five legal experts to discuss how lawyers in the United States can help Haitians in the midst of political instability after the August 15 earthquake and the July 7 assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moise.

The webinar, titled “Mobilizing Legal Resources for Haitians in a Time of Crisis: How the Legal Community Can Respond,” is co-sponsored by the ABA Commission on Immigration and the ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice.

The destabilizing events of the presidential assassination and earthquake in Haiti will be contextualized in light of past U.S. immigration policy after the 2010 earthquake and recent efforts to halt Temporary Protected Status for Haitian migrants.

The goal of the webinar is to gather ABA members and interested advocates to come together from across the country to understand how resources can be mobilized for policy efforts and individual representation to facilitate unprecedented access to the U.S. immigration system for Haitians during this time of crisis.

The program, which starts at 2 p.m. via Zoom, will feature experts from Florida, California and Washington, D.C.  Welcome Remarks will be made by Judy Perry Martinez, former ABA president, Of Counsel with Simon, Peragine, Smith, & Redfearn.

Panelists will include:
  • Krystina François, executive director of the Office of New Americans of Miami-Dade, Florida
  • Guerline M. Jozef, president of the Haitian Bridge Alliance, based in San Diego, California
  • Nicole M. Phillips, legal director of the Haitian Bridge Alliance
  • Adonia Simpson, director of policy and pro bono for the ABA Commission on Immigration
  • Aderson B. François, a law professor at Georgetown University, will moderate. He is director of Georgetown’s Institute for Public Representation Civil Rights Law Clinic.

To register for this free online event, visit and click on “events.”