Los Angeles is making its allegiance to undocumented immigrants clear as President-elect Donald Trump transitions into the White House. On Monday (Dec. 19), the city announced a $10 million L.A. Justice Fund that intends to ensure legal representation for immigrants at risk of deportation, LA Weekly reports.
According to elected leaders, the cash will be available by Inauguration Day. Taxpayers will cover half of the bill (the city and county are responsible for costs of $2 million and $3 million respectively), while nonprofits stand by their commitment to bring in the outstanding $5 million.
“People who have built their lives in America have rights, and they deserve all of the protections that our legal system provides,” Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a statement. “The L.A. Justice Fund will reach out to people who are American by every measure except the papers they hold — our family members, friends, neighbors and co-workers. They are part of our community, and we will fight for them.”
Upon entering office next month, Donald Trump vows to deport two to three million immigrants with criminal records—though statistics show there aren’t that many for him to target. Nevertheless, immigrants are more likely to succeed in court with representation. According to immigration attorney Luis F. Mancheno, a mere three percent of people successfully argue their cases without it.