WASHINGTON D.C. – Attorney General Karl A. Racine today announced that six local nonprofit organizations will receive Migrant Humanitarian Crisis Grants from the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) totaling $150,000 to support their front-line efforts to provide critical resources – such as housing, food, clothing, and transportation – to vulnerable migrants arriving from Arizona and Texas.
“In a purely political stunt, the Governors of Arizona and Texas created an unnecessary, cruel humanitarian crisis that has left vulnerable migrants and asylum-seekers without basic resources and with nowhere to go. DC is at our best when we step up for our neighbors, which means providing food, shelter, and other basic essentials to people in need,” said AG Racine. “My office has a strong track record of standing up for immigrants and taking action to improve public safety across the District and we’re eager to support these organizations that are helping migrant families as part of a broad-based community effort. We must use every tool at our disposal to answer the call for additional resources and provide aid to these vulnerable people.”
“We’re thrilled to be a recipient of this funding and appreciate AG Racine’s proactive efforts to address this crisis,” said Elizabeth Workman, founder of grant recipient Goods for Good. “We have been part of the amazing nonprofit community that has provided support services to migrants since the buses arrived in DC, and these funds will allow us to increase the work we do to benefit our new neighbors.”
The organizations that will receive grants from OAG include:
Friends Place on Capitol Hill (awarded $31,920)
Friends Place will provide lodging, meals, essential supplies, and transportation support. To date, Friends Place has hosted 380 migrants (representing 1000+ bed nights) and has been serving this vulnerable population since their arrival in April.
Goods for Good (awarded $16,550)
Goods for Good will provide essential items and an expanded clothing pantry. They work with other local nonprofits to mobilize and serve migrants. Goods for Good currently provides packaged clothing bundles to migrants arriving at Union Station, a dignified shopping experience through a clothing pantry, toys, and baby & infant supplies. Goods for Good will begin offering hygiene kits along with clothing services to serve this vulnerable population more effectively.
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of DC (awarded $32,280)
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington, Inc. will provide a translated Know Your Rights video and family reunification assistance. They will also host 4 in-person charlas, which are educational events that will include trainings about orientation to life in the United States, immigration law, public transportation, and accessing various resources.
Ayuda (awarded $32,350)
Ayuda will provide hygiene kits, backpacks, clothing, food, cell phones, and financial assistance. Ayuda has served this vulnerable population since their arrival to the District in April and has provided emotional support, legal advice and counsel, and has leveraged its expertise in providing culturally specific legal and social services. Ayuda will continue providing emergency financial assistance to cover the cost of food, medical supplies, and telephonic interpretation services
Central American Resource Center (CARECEN) (awarded $31,900)
CARECEN will send one staff member to meet buses arriving at Union Station 2-3 times per week. Staff members will provide intake services, and work as travel agents to purchase and coordinate outgoing travel. Funds will be used to assist with transportation costs to purchase tickets for migrants to their final destination and emergency lodging when centers have reached capacity.
Father McKenna Center (awarded $5,000)
Father McKenna will provide food, clothing, essential supplies, and outgoing transportation vouchers. They also offer showers, laundry service, a clothing closet, and provide breakfast and lunch every weekday.
Background on Migrant Humanitarian Crisis Grants
OAG announced this new grant program on August 11, 2022 in response to Arizona and Texas Governors’ decision to bus migrants to DC, leaving thousands of people—including families and children—with nowhere to go and without basic resources. Volunteers and non-profit organizations have largely assisted these people without government support. While many organizations have acted quickly and are working tirelessly to address the needs of migrants arriving in our city, OAG recognizes that these groups are facing enormous, unexpected strain as their resources are stretched thin. Without critical services, these vulnerable communities are likely to face significant harm, including potential threats to their safety.
In response to the urgent need for more resources, OAG is stepping in to offer these grants that provide financial support to eligible organizations that are working with this vulnerable population. Uber is also providing funds to OAG’s selected grantees to go towards transportation and other critical supports these organizations are providing to migrants.
The organizations are immediately able to provide services and supports under the grant agreement.
OAG Public Safety Grants
This funding comes from OAG’s Litigation Support Fund, which receives proceeds from OAG’s litigation. OAG has discretionary authority to issue grants to protect public safety or support vulnerable communities and also provides grants for the Cure the Streets (CTS) violence reduction program and for workers’ rights education. DC law limits grants under emergency non-competitive grants to $50,000 per organization. OAG may issue additional notices depending on the responses it receives and funding availability.
Protecting Immigrant Communities
Under AG Racine’s leadership, OAG has worked to protect the rights and safety of immigrant communities and has challenged several federal laws and practices that unfairly target immigrant communities, from the Muslim travel ban to limitations on asylum, the termination of Temporary Protected Status for Haitian-born residents, the Trump administration’s attacks on DACA, family separation, and more. OAG has also advocated for states and localities that have instituted pro-immigrant policies by helping to protect public safety funding for sanctuary cities and to limit local resources for federal immigration-crackdowns.