New York City officials are forking over an additional $1.6 million to city public defenders to represent illegal aliens who are facing deportation, officials announced Thursday.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson agreed Thursday to provide the extra $1.6 million towards the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP), a city government-funded program that supports lawyers defending illegal aliens going through deportation proceedings.
The $1.6 million funding allocation is on top of the $10 million the city already set aside for these lawyers. New York City’s public defenders, however, advocated for $6.6 million in additional funding to address the backlog of illegal alien deportation cases, the New York Daily News reported.
“This emergency funding will help us provide more attorneys to New Yorkers in need,” Johnson said, adding:
This is crucial right now as the ICE deportation machine has ramped up efforts to interfere with the necessary work NYIFUP is doing by pushing people through the system with zero regard for due process. I will continue to fight these un-American and horrific immigration policies.
Illegal aliens who face deportation proceedings do not have a right to a taxpayer-funded public defender in U.S. courts.
Non-profit legal organizations throughout the country often represent illegal aliens going through the deportation process, but de Blasio and other New York City officials used city taxpayer funds for public defenders representing illegal aliens.
“While the Trump Administration continues to demonize immigrants, we know that their contributions are part of what makes our city great,” said Mayor de Blasio. “We are proud to help provide desperately needed legal representation in the face of punitive federal policies.”
Other blue states, such as California, have established similar programs where taxpayer money is used for lawyers who defend illegal aliens in court. In 2017, former California Gov. Jerry Brown proposed using $15 million in taxpayer funds to defend illegal aliens in deportation proceedings.