Immigrant Defense Advocates

Legal Empowerment

Capacity Building



Immigrant Defense Advocates (IDA) serves as the preeminent immigration detention policy organization advocating in the California legislature. IDA is led by two former immigration attorneys who are not only familiar with immigration law and the challenges faced by individuals in these facilities, but also the importance of understanding grassroots organizing, and advocacy in achieving policy goals. IDA takes on policy work with a social justice lens, and works closely with impacted individuals in detention in order to empower communities of color and create change that is not solely predicated on legal work. IDA prides itself on its commitment to radical values and ambitious imagination, while also understanding the practical realities of the political system it operates in. As a result, IDA has proven its effectiveness as a nimble and committed actor advocating for one of the most disenfranchised communities in the California policy space: detained immigrants. IDA’s niche is rooted in its understanding of immigration detention and its ability to identify opportunities for action at the state level. They push the envelope on what a state can do in the context of immigration detention to protect its residents from private prison corporations and their abusive practices. Immigrant Defense Advocates received $40,000 in funding for 2023.