Every day, the legal rights of a vulnerable group of people are violated. Some immigrants, for example, are deported without any court hearing while some are detained unlawfully and discriminated because of their nationality. All these injustices have led to the creation of groups that advocate for civil and human rights, as well as the rights of immigrants.
Lacey and Larkin Fontera Fund
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin are journalists from Arizona who were unlawfully arrested by Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a Sheriff in Maricopa County. The duo sued the Maricopa County and was, in turn, paid a $3.75 million settlement after they won the case a decade later.
The settlement they received, popularly referred as Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund, is intended to assist groups that fight for human, civic and immigrants rights as they also advocate for civic participation and freedom of expression throughout Arizona.
American Immigration Council
This is a non-profit group based in Washington, D.C. The group is geared towards educating people of the contributions made by immigrants towards the rich American culture.
Through their international exchange programs, the American Immigration Council honors the history of the immigrants as they also shape the citizens’ relationship with the immigrants.
No More Deaths
This is a group of volunteers that popularly call themselves ‘No Mas Muertes’. Their main focus is to eradicate human suffering. They do this by following the migrants’ trails in the desert, and leaving drinking water, food and medical supplies along the way. Jim and Larkin also save the lives of some migrants that they find in the desert.
No More Deaths ministry has also provided shelter and medical care to migrants at a camp in southern Arizona. They assist migrants to recover property lost during detention and document any report of the abuse of migrants by the American Authorities.
Phoenix Legal Action Network
These are a group of legal representatives in Arizona that offer pro bono legal services to a vulnerable group of people. Through their project called Justice for Immigrants and Families, the network seeks to offer available access to justice for the Immigrants, promote self-help legal guidelines, and ensure a person’s immigration status does not affect the economic and social opportunities available.
Together with other organizations, the Phoenix Legal Action Network offers support and empowerment to the immigrants. They also advocate for police accountability and reforming criminals.
Arizona Dream Act Coalition
This coalition was established by a group of undocumented students, who were against the out-of-state expensive tuition they were supposed to pay in colleges.
These students were also against their exemption from receiving publicly funded merit scholarships. Through the students’ coalition, they told the world about the injustices they faced as migrant students.
Learn more about Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey:
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin Start Frontera Fund & Front Page Confidential
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin began their passion for journalism together in college and eventually purchased the Phoenix New Times together. During their time with this paper Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin conducted investigative journalism in order to expose Joe Arpaio, the then time Sheriff of Maricopa County to the citizens of Arizona. They were successful in these efforts.
An illegal arrest perpetrated by Joe Arpaio led to Arpaio’s name being in every major publication in the country. Joe Arpaio arrested Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin, and the peers of the two journalists spoke up in their defense. Due to national outcry, Lacey and Larkin were eventually freed, and this is when they sued Maricopa County.
The result of the lawsuit was nearly 4 million dollars, which was awarded in favor of Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin. Lacey and Larkin decided to do something new with the money, so they founded The Frontera Fund, a charity that works to better the lives of Hispanic residents.
The Frontera Fund works with dozens of charities in order to accomplish their goals. Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin chose to work towards the betterment of Latinos because Joe Arpaio used them to make a name for himself as sheriff.
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin weren’t able to stay away from the newspaper business for long. In the Summer of 2017, Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin created Front Page Confidential. The paper became their main outlet to readers. The paper produces content that relates to politics, civic rights, and migrant rights.
With these two organizations, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey are working to both fix and prevent damage from corrupt politicians.