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tv   Health Commission 2717  SFGTV  February 17, 2017 12:00pm-1:01pm PST

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have been contacted by immigrants from virtually every country, living in san francisco. i was you know -- dutch people from haiti i had no idea and it was really an education for me. >> if you look at the undocumented we have 44,000, 11,000 from mexico, and i think that sometimes the assumption is that you know, everybody here undocumented is from mexico, that is not true, 10,000 from china, 3,000 from guatemala, and 3,000 from the philippines and 18,000 from other countries. >> if you look at the dem graphics, of immigrants over all, between 2008 and 2010, # 1 percent are employed, and these are the folks. and our children, and they are part of our economy.
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and one out of every ten workers in california is undocumented. and you will see that it is inadvertise distinguishable from a prison. and you could be held there for years. and just to give you an idea of one of the cases that came across our office, and a woman by the name of anna was a passenger in a car. and the car was stopped, for a traffic violation, and she was picked up, and she doesn't have papers. and she was detained, and sent to deportation facility where she was, therefore, much before she was deported.
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she had a ten-year-old daughter. >> no criminal history. keep in mind that of the detained immigrants, as i said, 1500, there is 1005, and 67 percent of them are unrepresented by a lawyer, this is the national statistic from syracuse university, and from 2008, and 2012, only 22 percent of non-citizens subject to the ice detainer had a criminal conviction, even looking at the 7,000 people that were detained from san francisco and deported last year, two-thirds did not have any criminal record, record history whatsoever. believe me, we have plenty to do, and we again to meet with
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the non-profit and we collaborated on the unaccompanied children initiative and was able to get more lawyers and more resource foz that effort. and they have done an amazing and the 500 children that they have represented and not one has been deported since the city. instituted the program. >> and there is no way, that the non-profits will be able to handle the detained dayses, and remember that these cases are the most complex and the most difficult, because the people that are in custody, and the most vulnerable population therecy backlog of the immigration court alone. now there is only, 27 percent --.
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>> question where did you get that figure from? >> 36,000. >> if you could site your source. >> there is a report that i have that i can provide that was done by the public policy institute but those are non-detained cases. so, 27 percent of the non-detained immigrants have or do not have lawyers, and so the percentage of immigrants. >> now, these numbers that you are coining is it specific to san francisco county. ? eyes, this is the san francisco court, all right? >> yeah, so. and it became clearer that the only way that we can provide representation for the volume of folks is to a public defender's office and that is why we look to new york and we met with the defenders in new york and we met with the policy makers there, and it was shown to us, that the
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system there works. and we figured out what it would take in order to fund that, and so the proposal that we would put forth is to hire, ten public defenders each of whom will handle 40 and 60 case and now because we will staff the courtroom and so rather than having 12 >> 48 cases for one attorney.
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>> a year. >> just go through that because i need to make a note of that. >> our proposal is that we will hire, 10 public defenders each of whom will handle 40 to six cases a year. >> so i thought that the original request was for 17, you have changed it. >> there are seven support staff. >> and ten attorneys. >> so ten, attorneys, that would hire that would handle 40 to 60 cases a year. >> yes. >> thank you. >> and before i stop, i just wanted to mention one other thing is that we have been working with a non-profits, and you know, we are very excited about potentially being able to work with them, but there will still be gaps, even if you fund this and that is where the foundations can come in, i have been working with from the foundation and she has put together meetings that the mayors, and
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>> we will put together the pro bono and there is, i think, you know, a need for a public private foundation, partnership. and i have been very mindful about that. because i'm sure, that you are too. this is now, it is not in october, and because, we just
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heard yesterday, that there are children, and parents under dopa and doca who are picked up in raids around this country, and even in this district. and because the court is in san francisco. not only trying to do your job. and to show your heart but i do have the difficult questions. so for example, in the budget analyst report, it sites that in fiscal year, 2015, through 16, there were 229 detain ees in the
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immigration court and as we all know here it does not just contain those who are only i want to make sure that we have the numbers straight here in terms of the number of detain ees. >> so basically you are saying that 1500 of the 2209 are san francisco residents. >> yeah, and the most recent report i have here, is called the california due process crisis, and it is a june 2016, report which is the most recent one, by the california coalition, for the universal representation, and they have all the numbers here you know, from the immigration court and i believe that the number, 1500 also, appears in mr. rose's well
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researched report. and so, i believe that that is the correct number and we did verify that with the court. and that that number is the most accurate number. and i have gone through the case myself and certainly, observed it i know that it is very come mri indicate and that is why your office wants to be aible to consult with some of the other, organizations and the non-profit organizations to assist with what is very complicated matters and so in terms of those who are actually detained on citizens, and immigration, court. and i would imagine, that the staffing level is incredibly
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different, and in terms of how you calculated, the number of attorneys that you need, and i am just not sure that we would get to that same number here, because you might have to go to court, the non-profit organizations handled that they can handle between, 20 and 40 cases and the reason why our case will be higher is because we would staff each of the courts with an attorney. and that attorney will handle all of the cases on that day and, it is the same reason why it is efficient to have the
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public defender to handle the criminal cases. and so that attorney would be there and handle all of the cases that were on a particular date, and they would be assigned you know, to the various court rooms and because the immigration courts are set up in that fashion, it makes sense and we have also talked to the immigration judge the chief judge here in san francisco. now we have one immigration specialist who has worked in our office since three years ago, there was the pediat decision which required public defenders to advise clients as to the immigration consequences and the city as well as the office would be liable for the failure to do so. that attorney also in addition tho advising all of the
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attorneys in our office as to immigration consequences. and making sure that if a person decides to plead guilty or is convicted after a trial that they don't face deportation unless they have to, that person also handles a limit number of immigration cases in the detention court. and handles 12 cases. and if we had attorneys who are dedicated to doing detention defense only, we again, estimate that they will be able to do between the cases. it is not because the non-profit is not working as hard. they are. it is just that they have more resources in addition to the support staff and also i have over, 250 volunteers who work in our office, law students and lawyers, and every year, volunteer their service and so we would also start at
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immigration clinic, and utilize law students to do some of the work. thank you, and don't confuse my questions to not think that this is important work i want to make sure that the members of the public really understand that and we want to make sure that the funding is going to where the appropriate needs are and so forth, and so again, these are just trying to get more clarity around the situation. but in terms of other cities or counties, i am wondering has there been any conversation about how those other neighboring jurisdictions where they have residents, who have non-detained non-citizens going through our sf immigration court whether they can also contribute
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to some of what we are trying to achieve here. because i think that we should all be a partner here.
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>> no matter if you are from ant arc ka, you are going to be represented and yet for the person in the san francisco immigration court and some have suggested that we, you know, only i don't want to be part of that sort of system or representation, and what about the people that work here, and what about the people who have family here, where do you draw the line? that would be incredibly cruel to going to the courthouse and to say that you are from san francisco and say that you lived in south filipino, and you moved outside, sorry. >> that is not what i am trying to get at. >> so i am just trying to say that because there are people who are in sf immigration court from other jurisdictions. and because, we would like them to step up, and even if they don't have a public defenders office, like we do here.
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we don't have that information, and that information is not currently kept, and so if you look at the detention centers, right, there is one in richmond and there is one in bakersfield and they are all over california and so theyed that it is not practical given what we are experiencing. >> and then i know that the other colleagues have questions, and my last one is you know, actually when i first came into the office, and i know that, the
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number of cases that have forth ahead of your department, and for for example, since 2001, and 2002, the total ftes in the public defenders office has grown by 49 percent, and total cases have declined by 44 percent, since that same period of time. and so, and then the budget has grown, 155 percent since then, and so i am just, again, i think that we are all very supportive of this he have /* effort and if you could in the six month report, that just came out there was an identified salary savings of 238,000 within your own department and so i am wondering if there is a way to figure out how we can achieve the staffing within your own
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>> when i came into the office in 2003, we worked with the controller to determine a matrix for our work load as well as our caseload. and with realignment, and prop 47 and a number of criminal justice reforms, and there is a shift in san francisco. and we are rather than with the felony caseload, rather than again, ten or 12,000 low level felonies that number is now down to 6,000 or 7,000 but these cases now are the more serious case and there is a shift by the district. to focus on homicide, and violent crimes frment and serious felonies.
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we are seeing many more serious cases ask what is reflected in the work load, which i provided tho the budget analyst and i will provide one to you now, shows you that in terms of the work load, and misdemeanor attorneys are handling approximately, 70 cases, and in a given time, and they are working 68 hours a week, on average, and we track all of this information, and precisely for this purpose, in the felony attorneys, are handling cases of over about
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>> we are expected to the surplus at the end of the year and believe me that i tracked that number very carefully. and the reason why it shows as a higher number, about 200,000 is because we have an employee who was out on family leave, to leave before the 6 month period that is required before the employee is not required to pay it back. >> she had to pay back well over 100,000 dollars, and 125,000.
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and that check was written to the city, however, it is posted to our account. and so our surplus as i see it is 63,000. now, if the city wants to give me, another 150,000, i will be happy to take it. and certainly, you can apply that to this program. >> thank you. >> i think that i just want to say that, your line of
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questioning is to get to where we feel confident about what we are asking, and what we support. and primarily because as you know, and melissa has mentioned that we don't and there are so many unknowns we have to be really careful about our next year's budget and so forth. so, just i wanted and i have several questions here and it is sort of unrelated. and in regards for the people that are detained, where are they? i mean, or detained in san francisco? or is it a bulk of them where they have a whole jail just for detain ees of undocumented folks? >> i mean, so do you have that answer? >> yeah, i mean, there are primarily, 4 centers which
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include bake kerz field. and the closest is in richmond county, and also in sacramento county. what has happened is that there is some countia ills and some counties, which have made the space available in their jails to hold the ice detain ees and san francisco did that for a while and are not doing that any more, because we don't have the space and the policy decision, i think was made under then. and what we are also concerned about is that under the trump administration, they are going to start now using.
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they are using some video, and video, taped sort of appearances and in order to facilitate that. that is where the attorneys will go and meet with the client and they will be brought there from the facility, by ice to meet and that is another reason to ask why, that is why to have the mayors in san francisco. >> so the attorneys don't have to worry about the travel time to these facilities. >> no, there may be some need for that and certainly cases
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that that could be. and thus far, in our practice, we have not had any problems having ice bring the clients to court either for the client interviews or for the court dates. >> and then, there seems to be more cases than the attorneys that you wanted. and would be able to handle, even if they could handle 600. there is still more cases than that. so, how does, how does one, determine the priority of who they serve? >> well, currently, right, we only handle about 12 cases so we have to do that too. >> yeah, how do you do that? >> we look to the cases where now, all of the cases are former clients. so they are clients of the public defender, who are in immigration court. and we will intervene on cases
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where we believe the person has the best chance of prevailing. and now, of all of the non-profits in san francisco. three, handle detained cases and it is estimated with the current level of funding, and the additional funding by the mayor, they would probably be able to handle anywhere between 50 and to 80 cases. so if you take that off, the 1005, we will be able to determine if the person does not have a good defense and, maybe the person does not want to stay here, and we will be able to help that person to get to a place of safety, and if that is desire, where there are case and
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issues that will be litigate and we will do that, and it is no the to say that every case, will require the same level of attention. so you already explained the patterns and why you need more staffing for the fewer cases. so we will need less staff than n >> no, no. >> yeah. >> this is supervisors eokay. >> tang's question was asked earlier. >> yeah. >> okay. >> the last thing, i, you know, we had a hearing or something a few weeks ago and a non-profit came up here and made their case. and i, are the non-profits are
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they here? >> yeah, i see. >> are they in agreement that you should that the public defender should be taking the bulk of these cases? you know? how are you communicating with them? >> you know, would it be okay if i yielded to. >> is somebody here. >> yeah. >> that can speak for them. >> yeah. >> i don't think that we have any. >> all right. >> all right. >> is anna here. >> that is okay. >> that is okay, we will continue with you. >> okay. >> if you want to speak you have to come up. >> you will have to come up and be on the record so anyone can hear you and see you.
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>> bill hersh with the aids legal referral panel, with he provides legal services for immigrants with hiv in san francisco, and we are not part of that clabive, but we are very supportive of this effort. >> my question is to those that are. >> and part of it. >> thank you thank you. >> thank you. >> good morning, supervisors. we are preparing to speak after. my name is anna is i am the managing director of the services and we are part of the collaborative to receive the funding to provide additional services chl >> do you feel like that your collaborative would be not in as good as a position as the public defenders to actually call these cases thereof the people that were detained. >> we are already taking on these cases. and we are responding.
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>> sure. >> we believe that we the city of san francisco as a leader in defending immigrants, should provide the most robust and comprehensive legal defense services and that includes the public defenders office that is a model that has worked in new york and a model that alena county is doing now and a model that should be implemented here in san francisco. there is only one immigration attorney in that office currently. and the public defender model is provides high quality, high volume defense. that is the kind of volume that we need against trump high volume depowertation machine. >> and we are working together as we have been thus far, but we you know the original proposal the community based organizations have worked with the public defender, in working
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together, and ramping up all of the services that we provide and there is a void because the public defender does not have no, sir services yet. so we are fully in support of increasing their services as well. >> okay, thank you. >> so just real quick, you're supporting increasing his budget at the expense of your allocation? >> allocation of public dollars to your non-profit? >> no, supervisor. i am fully in support of supervisor fewer proposal today for the public defender. >> thank you. >> hi, my name is nulo and i am with a non-profit service and we are one of the organizations here in san francisco that provides representation to detained immigrants. the majority of our cases are non-detained and that is also the majority of the non-profits in san francisco and provides representation. and so i want to provide a little bit of context about a year ago, non-profit
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organizations came together to talk about this gap for detained immigrants. and we soon started talking with the public defenders office. we realized that we could not be doing as non-profit community based organizations we could not be doing this work alone, the need is far too great to be able to service everybody that we want to and need to represent. so, we were really grateful that the public defenders office jeff and francis, and stepped up and i mean that it took some convincing i mean at first, we had to approach them, and ask if there was interest, and if there was capacity and it took serious considerations by their office. to decide to take this on.
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>> supervisors asked about the residency question, in new york city, what the city council decided when they decided to fund millions of dollars to provide representation, what
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they looked at was where is the jurisdiction? they said that we believe in access to council and due process in our courts here in new york city and so we are going to provide attorneys in new york city for anyone who is going through our immigration court in new york city. that is what we are asking for here in san francisco. and the immigration court is in san francisco, and jeff went through some of the history you know, the folks who were brought in in the 1940s and, between, 1900s to the 40s. everybody was actually detained here in san francisco. everyone who was taken initially in the angel island and then at 630, street in san francisco, in the financial district, and.
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>> so yes, there are three non-profit organizations that are pro-he vieding representation to detained immigrants and all three of us are very strongly support the public defender's office taking on this effort. thank you. >> thank you. >> i want to ask you a question, which are are with you. >> pangea legal services. >> you are doing the representation in the courts. what happens, let me ask you this, if the feds were to
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request people's personal information, is the city government more liable because they must be compelled to turnover this information? as opposed to working with a non-profit? so i guess the question that i am asking, if a person is needing legal representation is it not in their competitive and best interest to be represented by a cbo as opposed to the city agency. like the public defenders office? >> in terms of privacy, and security, it does not matter, attorney privilege is attorney privilege, an attorney cannot turnover the client information, whether they are represented by the defender or the non-profit. but in terms of you know, strength and competency and capacity to build, a city agency is you know that is where all the nop profits came together
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last year and agreed that this is not about us, this is not about the non-profits or the public defender, this is about the community members and you know there are several that are going to be speaking this is about what do we think is best for the community members, and community based organization and the public defender together decided it is best for the community to be represented by the city agency like the public defender. >> that is my question. what was the thought process behind that, i understand that you came to this conclusion, what was the science and the facts and the data that you used to support this? because i agree, everyone wants to put the community's best interest first, i am pushing back and looking for a better understanding as to how the public defender's office became the lead agency, as opposed to the community based that are already doing the work and already success, having success in this? that is my question. >> well, the public defender has already been doing the work, the public defender has been
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representing people in detentions for decades. >> thank you. >> next person, please. >> thanks. >> this is unice lee and i am the co-legal director for the center of refugee studies and we are one of the member organizations we provide technical assistance and training to the collaborative. i think that they pretty much covered, you know a lot about the process and the support. i just wanted to reiterate that we do hear, we do address a birds eye view of how the collaborative has gotten off the gro und and the need that is out there. and we absolutely support and think that it is the best model for the public defender, to be staffed up in the way that is proposed together with the community based organizations. also receiving the funding that they are receiving. >> okay. >> thank you. >> i'm -- i'm actually done with my questioning.
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thanks. >> we should go to public comment though? >> i don't know. >> do you want to go to public comment? >> is there anything else. >> i do have a couple of questions. >> you gave us this schedule one following the unit waited analysis right here, maybe you can walk us tlut it because i just want to make sure that i am interpreting this correctly, you have attorneys, one through 41 on one page, and to protect the attorneys, but what is level one, 2, 3, 4, and 5, what does that mean? >> okay, yeah if you look at the first page, those are our felony attorneys and then the second page are the misdemeanor attorneys. the attorneys dby number, they are actual people, and we just didn't list their names. level one, level 2, 3, 4, 5, designates the kind of case that they are handling. 1, is the least serious, 12 five and 4 are like homicide cases. and then so you see the total
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days load that they are handling and then you can see the allocation of ours throughout the week based on their caseload, this is the science that we used to manage the case loads and so when an attorney is at 60 hours a week, 65 hours a week, that is when we will stop assigning them cases and assign to an attorney who has a lesser caseload that is how we maintain a work load that is reasonable and insure that they have sufficient time to work and investigate their cases. >> could you tell me again, what is level one, out of the level one through five, obviously the level one has the heaviest caseload. >> level one are crimes like second degree burglary, drug offenses, there is about 40 crimes that fall within level one, what we did was we determined these levels working with the controller's office. their city project's team using
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actual case studies, surveys focus groups, and they also plotted out cases over a period of time to look at the average time that were spent on various types of cases and so based on the charges, and the seriousness of the case. the cases are categorized as 1 through 5, and then the time is allocated accordingly. >> thank you. is there anything else. >> i do have the studies you were asking for. >> perfect we will take that. >> let me see if i have any other questions. >> no, that is it. thank you. >> okay. supervisor fewer is there anyone else or could we go to public comment at this time. >> yes, we can move into public comment, and i want to thank the community members for being so patient. and also to the city department
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heads and as we move into community comment, i want to prioritize these three speakers, raja and anna and then ryan, and co-stostf and the immigration rights commission. >> i am sorry, excuse me, before we go to public comment, let's go to the bla report. >> is there a -- mr. rose, is there a bla report for this item. >> yes, there is madam chair, and members of the committee as i understand it, supervisor fewer has submitted amended legislation, which is consistent with the recommended reductions that we have made. i would be happy to briefly summarize the rationale as for our recommended reductions or whatever the committee would like. >> would i like to hear your summary of your recommendations. >> absolutely. >> on page 15 of our report, we
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point out that regarding the time line, we say that since the public defenders office cannot begin the hiring process until the requested appropriations approved by the board of supervisors and approval will occur, on february, 28, 2017, at the earliest and i would emphasize that, the budget and legislative analyst estimates that all new hiring will start on april first, 2017. that is point one, and secondly on page 16, the public defender's office, estimates that 400 to 600 cases per year, and the budget analyst rejects that the initial caseload will be less than estimated in the public defenders office, because the policy to detain, the undocumented immigrants is not clear, and about the caseload will take time to develop. and therefore, the budget and legislativive analyst, recommends reducing the number of positions from 17 to 13
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positions in 16, 17, that is based on the estimated caseload, 415, and fiscal year, 1718, and based on the load of 500. and the requested number of ftes shouldn reduced from 7.08 as shown in table, in our report, to 2.25 ftes to account for a start date of april first, as i mentioned instead of february first and that is thrown in table three of page 16. on page 17, we notice that the ordinance appropriate ates, 925,000, in 16, 17, and 2 million, in 17, 18. and no a total of 3 million 503, 176 and that is to create, new 17 positions. and that is for salaries and benefits, the budget and analyst recommendations will result in 13 positions as i noted, 3.25,
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with the start date of april, first, 2017, and then, salary and benefits of 418, 105, in 16, 17 and then 15 positions and salary and benefits of 2 million, in 17, 18, and that is shown in table four on page 176 our report. our recommended reductions will reduce the total appropriation for salaries and benefits, from 3 million, to 2 million, and or reduction of 106, 1, 379 and these are the numbers that supervisor fewer has mentioned in her legislation. and then because the board of supervisors previously appropriate ated funding of 1.5 million in january of 2017. for community based organizations to provide legal representation in 16, 7, our recommendation is to amend the proposed ordinance to delete, 3
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million, allocated to the community based organizations in 16, 17, and 17, 18. >> so, in finally, supervisors on page 18, of our report. our precise recommendations is we recommend that you amend file 16, 12, 88 to reduce the appropriation by 4 million. and from 6 million, to 2 million. we recommend that you amend file 16, 1289 to reduce the number, 16, 17, ftes by 3.83, from 7.08 to 3.25, and the if is calhoun year, 17, 18, by two from 17 to 15, and finally we can consider approval of the proposal ordinance as amended to be a policy decision for the board of supervisors and we would be happy to respond to any questions. >> thank you, i do have one question on page, 23 of your report he talk about the pending
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legislation and i am curious to know where it is kur currently in the process, and i am interested in the bill, three. >> i am sorry, page? >> oh, go ahead. >> supervisor cohen. that was in the other report that we did, for supervisor fewer. and our understanding is that there were hears tuesday on both of those bills. and can i don't think that they have taken final action yet, they are still pending in committee. >> there whats no action taken. ? ethat is my understanding. >> and you guys are watching the bill. >> we are. >> will you be able to report back to us and let us know the status. >> yes, we are. >> yes. >> supervisor fewer, i think that we are going to go ahead and go to public comment. i have a stack of cards that are here in front of me, so you mentioned a couple of names, why don't the persons that heard their names line up here at the podium. and then again, just as a reminder, there is a two minute
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limit for public comment. i want to make sure that we hear every comment from everyone. you will hear a soft chime indicating 30 seconds remaining on the balance of your time. don't forget to state your name. welcome. >> good afternoon, supervisors. my name is ryan, i am a first year law student at uc hastestimonying and a member of the immigrant rights igs xh. i would like to express my whole hearted support for establishing this unit in the public defenders office dedicated to die fending our immigrants against deportation, san francisco would not be san francisco without the many contributions of our immigrant community. this is a necessary step ta we as a city must take to protect our immigrants. i have spoken with a number of people regarding this issue.
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ranging from my classmates to residents, to old friends from across the country, and to even a forkmer ice agent and they hae expressed their support that immigrants facing deportation proceedings should be access to council through the public defenders office and i hope that this committee and the full board will support this as well. thank you. >> thank you. >> i am from mexico, and i am facing deportation charges and if whats naught for pangia, the lawyers there that helped me out, i would have still probably be detained or been deported.
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i am a veteran, and i was able to see their faces how sad they were when they needed to represent themselves against the monster of immigration. against the monster of the united states government, it is very difficult when you are no the educated and when you don't know what information to look for, for your defense. having the right defense at the time is crucial. for us to fight or deportation, i fought for this country, one time shths i gave it six honorable years of my service, the least that i could expect is for this country and the state of california and the city of san francisco which is a great city to have us represented by the great lawyers and the great gift from the city that is always contributing to this appreciated have are well appreciate ated gifts of
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representation. thank you, next speaker. >> at this time, i would like to remind the new faces, that are maybe unfamiliar with the process. in order to insure that we can hear everyone in the timely manner, with he asked that you refrain from applause. but we definitely want you to weigh in on items that you like, so we asked that you use your spirit fingers like this and when you hear something that you do not care for you can do a thumbs down, all right? and so, jen price, please. >> good morning, supervisors my name is price and i am a staff attorney with the justice center, we are a legal services non-profit and we represent women and children who have fled violence to date we have represented over 19,000 women and children fleeing violence, and we are here today with our whole hearted support for this additional funding. i would like to share a couple of stories that will highlight
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the women and children that we have worked with that will be impacted by this. we with vun client that who was pregnant and a victim of domestic violence and was beaten so severely that she suffered two miscarriage and another client, a victim, who abuser poured gas line on her and lit her on fire. and those two woman fled to the united states to seek protection and were detained by our immigration and customs enforcement and just by chance they both ended up listening to know your rights presentations and were connected to our organization andly luck were able to be represented by us to fight against their deportation. and we are not for organization such as ourselves and some of the other soaringizatiorganizat women have been returned to the violence.
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>> and so i just wanted to highlight with this new administration and new emphasis on enforcement and detention and detainment, all of our clients now have complex cases they are all at risk of deportation. broad categories of victims, domestic survivors and human trafficking and stek youal assault survivors are targeted just last week, a woman in elpaso was detained by ice, so this is unheard of in our immigration system. we support this funding and we hope that you do as well. thank you. >> thank you. next speaker please. >> good afternoon supervisors thank you for welcoming community comments, my name is tala and i am the vice chair of the northern california chapter of the american immigration lawyers association, and on
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behalf of call, i am here to speak in support of the budget for immigrant defense. alanore cal is made up of 900 immigration lawyers in northern california, our members are non-profit attorneys who are working in community based organizations. and private bar attorneys who represent individuals, families and also companies. many of our members are already providing representation to low income immigrants, and immigration court. it is also already working with the collaborative in many areas and has particularly worked closely with several to support probono representation at the bakersfield detention center. our members know first hand that there is already an unmet need and the greatest gap is low
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representation. and strongly support funding for the san francisco. >> i was in a facility, and my case was assigned to san francisco. >> my case was difficult and luckily i had the chance of having an attorney. >> i know that many people don't
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have this opportunity. my stay at the detention facility was short. >> but in the time that i was detained my family was very grateful impacted emotionally. and economically. >> i was lucky to be represented but i saw many, many more immigrants that didn't, or that were not represented. >> and because i was represented i was able to reunite with my family, rather than being
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deported. i think that is the separation of families causes a great impact in our society. >> and i am able to stay here and so that my children can stay here and study. in addition to that i came to this country at a very young age and i feel more from here from this country, than i do from mexico.
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if i didn't have the defense of an attorney, i would be in mexico right now. >> thank you, and just to note, he is now a lawful resident, he has received a uvisa and on the pathway to obtaining a green card. thank you. >> i'm voter of district one, first i would like to say that it is my opinion, full citizenship rights for all immigrants, the rich can always buy them and they do. and these immigrants as the attorney has stated, proved, that the 91 percent are in employment and paying tax and not getting advantage of many of those taxes.

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