Legal Aid Survivor Project to Commemorate UN International Day in Support of Victims of Torture Events and Social Media Campaign Aim to Raise Awareness and Recognize Survivors
The Torture Survivors Project of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles (LAFLA-TSP) will commemorate this year’s UN International Day in Support of Victims of Torture (June 26th) through a series of community events aimed at raising awareness about this profound human rights abuse, what can be done to aid victims and to how to prevent such future abuses.
“Los Angeles is home to more torture survivors than any other city in the United States but more importantly it is a haven for survivors to heal from the unspeakable harm and pain that they have suffered,” said Silvia R. Argueta, Executive Director at LAFLA. “The purpose of this awareness project is to educate the general public about the prevalence of torture worldwide while also sharing information about the services available to torture survivors at LAFLA.” Torture continues to be practiced around the world by many countries, contrary to the United Nations Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and other International covenants.
In support of LAFLA’s mission to achieve equal justice for poor and low-income people in Los Angeles , the Torture Survivors Project provides critical legal and referral services to immigrants who have been victims of torture in their countries of origin. “Because of our targeted outreach, LAFLA-TSP is oftentimes an initial point of contact for torture survivors in the Los Angeles region,” said Daliah Setareh, LAFLA Senior Attorney. “When our clients tell us that the legal services and support from our advocates played a significant role in rehabilitating their trust in others, their sense of security and their empowerment as individuals, we know we have done our job.”
Founded in 2001, LAFLA-TSP has impacted over a thousand torture survivors to date and has been instrumental in securing client victories in several high profile cases including Jiang vs. Holder, among others. To reach these individuals, LAFLA-TSP conducts outreach in key ethnic communities where it is known there are large populations of asylees and refugees who have come to the U.S. from countries where torture is commonly committed. These include countries such as Armenia, Cambodia, China, D.R. Congo, Guatemala, Iran, Pakistan, Somalia and Sudan among others.
In recognition of torture survivors, LAFLA-TSP will host a series of events commencing on June 26th to include:
- 6/26 @ 9:30 AM: Proclamation of UN International Day In support of Victims of Torture @ LA County Board of Supervisors Meeting , Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration
- 6/26 @ 6:30 PM: Reception and film screening of “The Last Survivor” at the Museum of Tolerance
- 6/28@ 5:30 PM: Story circle with torture survivors in partnership with Cornerstone Theater
In support of LAFLA’s mission to achieve equal justice for poor and low-income people in Los Angeles, the Torture Survivors Project provides critical legal services to immigrants who have been victims of torture in their countries of origin.
About the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles’ Torture Survivors Project (LAFLA-TSP)
LAFLA-TSP attorneys and advocates assist torture survivors in numerous ways including: protecting clients from deportation, helping them secure sources of income, obtaining immigration status and helping them to obtain identification documentation, establishing their freedom to travel, reuniting them with their families and lastly naturalization.
LAFLA-TSP maintains a strong partnership with various agencies in Los Angeles, convening bimonthly meetings of the Los Angeles Asylum Collaborative which it founded. The Collaborative includes the Program for Torture Victims (PTV), Public Counsel’s Immigrant Rights Project, International Rescue Committee (IRC), USC Immigration Clinic and the American Red Cross, among others.
- Rebecca Bravo, 323-801-7908
- Mary Cohen, 310-650-2509