Davenport’s College Tea with Conchita Cruz was featured in the YDN last week: Davenport College Tea addresses refugee advocacy by Conor Johnson.
Conchita Cruz is a lawyer and activist who co-founded the Asylum Seeker Advocacy Project (ASAP) with four Yale law students in 2015. She discussed asylum law and advocacy for Central American refugees.
“We set [ASAP] up as a way to help families in need and for mothers to help one another,” Cruz said. “We have to think critically about our country’s role in why these countries are so dangerous and why these people are fleeing.”
Cruz emphasized the importance of refugees having an access to an attorney, as lawyers are not automatically provided by the state for those seeking asylum. ASAP has been able to prevent “thousands of deportations and hundreds of people from imminent deportation.” She described how the American immigration system fails refugees and how Americans have an obligation to aid these refugees.
“I wanted the first tea that I ran to reflect the amazing energy of the students,” Witt said. “And I thought there couldn’t be someone better than Conchita for that.”
Students were excited to learn about Cruz’s work, and they found the tea to be “eye-opening.”