Cleveland City Council Supports U Visas with Passage of Resolution

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Megan Sprecher and city officials

June 2010 — On March 22, 2010 Cleveland City Council passed Resolution No. 374-10, introduced by Council President Martin Sweeney and Councilman Jay Westbrook, encouraging the use of U Visas for victims of crime in Cleveland. U Visas give victims of crime and cooperating witnesses legal status and are often issued to protect survivors of domestic abuse. At the City Council Meeting, Legal Aid staff attorney Megan Sprecher addressed the City Council, Mayor Frank Jackson, police Chief Michael McGrath, and an audience that included Legal Aid clients assisted by the U Visa program. The following Sunday, a Plain Dealer editorial co-authored by Ms. Sprecher and Chief McGrath reinforced the importance of U Visas: “Many victims remain with their abusers and do not seek the help of police for fear of deportation. The U Visa promotes safe communities by encouraging immigrant victims of crimes to make police reports.”

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