Come What May!

The month of May was chock full of fun events, like Law Trivia Night and Jazz for Justice! We also released the second episode of our new podcast, Courting Justice (available now on iTunes), in which we discussed the special considerations one should make when assisting and working with victims of violent trauma. We look forward to the beginning of July when we’ll release episode 3!

Blessed In Kind

Natives of Chad, Wowe Nahor* and his wife Nya Nahor* were persecuted for their involvement with the National Council of Chadian Recovery (CNR). Wowe was imprisoned and tortured. Upon being freed, he knew his family must flee their country. And so he applied for and was granted asylum in the United States. At the time, his two sons also received derivative asylee status. The Nahor family was finally safe.

Jazz for Justice Highlights

Executive Director Chris Purnell shared some important statistics with those in attendance at Jazz for Justice. Like how 101 immigrant victims of violent crime were able to get temporary status in 2015 with the help of the Clinic. Also in 2015, the Clinic helped save 490 families from foreclosure. The Center for Responsible Lending estimates that every foreclosure prevented results in $21,000 in real savings for a community. That’s $10,290,000 worth of savings for the community in just one year.

A Journey to Justice

While attending Law School, Jason met and married a woman named Jill. He then went on to start his own practice with his partner, Steve Wagner. Years passed, and all the while, the money and accolades rolled in. In the eyes of the world, he was everything he was supposed to be. He was a success. But Jason found himself thinking, “This is ridiculous. I want to be more than that.”

Caring for Victims of Violent Trauma — Courting Justice Podcast Episode 1×02

What considerations must be made when working with victims of violent trauma? How can service providers help them feel safe and empowered? What are the potential pitfalls?

Join host Ashley Caveda as she discusses these questions, the long-reaching effects of trauma, and more with Legacy House Executive Director Michael Hurst and Victim Justice Program Immigrant Advocate Noemí Gallegos.

Au revoir, April!

This April, we explored the idea of Abundant Wisdom, with Chris providing our introduction at the beginning of the month. We then took an especially close look at how wisdom applies to financial matters. We learned more about our Building Wealth program and about what to do if you get an examination letter back from the IRS. We also met a woman who was given a second chance thanks to the hard work of Project GRACE.

A Fresh Start

Over the years, things started looking up for Debra and she was eventually able to turn her life around. She found a job. She got married and then had two children, leaving her old life decades behind her. In fact, when she came to our office seeking assistance with sealing her criminal record, Project GRACE staff attorney, Carlton Martin, says, “She had not committed a crime in almost 20 years.”

Upcoming Events

Looking for a fun way to get your family involved in helping the community? Head out to Broad Ripple Ice Cream Station on Thursday, April 21st to support the Clinic! BRICS has generously agreed to donate 10% of each sale on that day so that more of your low-income neighbors can have access to justice. There’s nothing better than ice cream and social justice! We hope to see you there! In the meantime, whet your appetite by perusing their menu.

IRS Examination Assistance

When someone faces an issue with the IRS, Dee Dee says, “The first thing we have to do is get them in filing compliance so they can access some of the programs that the IRS has to deal with what you owe.” Ultimately, the cost of not resolving these issues can be very high. “Sometimes we’ve found out when someone owed and then didn’t file for years, it was actually erroneous and by not filing they didn’t get refunds that they could have gotten.”

Building Wealth

Ultimately, Lisa was surprised by how much she learned, although originally she was hesitant to participate in the Building Wealth program. She says, “I felt like I had a lot of advantages that I had squandered and here I am in this situation.” She admits to feeling ashamed of needing help in the first place, but acknowledges her delays in seeking assistance only made her financial recovery that much harder. “The sooner you realize you are about to go off that cliff, you should pick up the phone and call. If you think it’s hard now, it does get worse,” she says. “If you can head it off at the pass, it makes it easier.”