Press Release

Morgan Lewis to Receive Safe Haven Award for Efforts on Behalf of LGBTQ Asylum Seekers

Monday, April 10, 2017

NEW YORK, April 10, 2017: Morgan Lewis will receive a 2017 Safe Haven Award from LGBTQ immigrant rights organization Immigration Equality for the firm’s pro bono efforts on behalf of members of the vulnerable LGBTQ immigrant community seeking refuge in the United States.

Morgan Lewis has a long tradition of helping noncitizens in the United States obtain legal immigration status, with a particular focus on working with legal services organizations like Immigration Equality to assist victims of persecution who have been forced to flee their home countries in search of asylum.  Likewise, the firm’s deep-rooted commitment to diversity and inclusion drives our support for and legal representation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals.

Morgan Lewis’s asylum practice on behalf of LGBTQ individuals has grown significantly in the past few years, becoming one of the hallmarks of the firm’s pro bono program. Recent successes include securing asylum for a number of at-risk individuals, including a Ugandan man who was kidnapped, detained, and tortured due to his active support of the LGBTQ movement in Uganda; a Salvadorian national who fled his family’s attempts to bludgeon his sexual orientation out of him; and a gay man from Jamaica who narrowly escaped repeated attempts on his life.

Every year, Morgan Lewis lawyers and legal personnel devote tens of thousands of hours to pro bono client representations, including matters of immigration and asylum. Since 2015, the firm has donated more than 1,500 lawyer hours to Immigration Equality matters alone, considerably affecting the lives of those who otherwise would not have had access to much needed representation. Recently, we helped a number of individuals who had been adversely affected by the executive order suspending all entry into the United States by both immigrants and nonimmigrants from select countries.

Morgan Lewis will receive a 2017 Safe Haven Award at a May 18 ceremony at the New York Historical Society.