(September 13, 2021 at 10am)

QUEENS, NY – Four months after launching a first-of-its-kind Immigrant Welcome Center at Queens Borough Hall, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Jr. today announced a pair of additional partnerships with Community Mediation Services and CUNY Citizenship Now! to provide weekly in-person services for the more than 1 million immigrants who call Queens home.

“More than one million immigrants from all corners of the globe call Queens home, and it is vitally important that all our neighbors regardless of place of origin know that Queens Borough Hall — The People’s House — is ready and able to address their needs, whatever they may be,” said Borough President RICHARDS. “We couldn’t be more excited to have CUNY Citizenship Now! and Community Mediation Services on-hand to expand the resources available at our Immigrant Welcome Center and better serve our immigrant families.”

Each Thursday from 10AM to 5PM beginning earlier this month, Borough President Richards’ Immigrant Welcome Center is hosting a bilingual Community Mediation Services staff member, whose role within the Center is to assist immigrant New Yorkers in applying for the New York State Excluded Workers Fund — a one-time payment program for immigrant residents who lost income during the COVID-19 pandemic but were ineligible for various federal unemployment and pandemic relief benefits.

Each Tuesday from 9AM to 5PM beginning tomorrow, September 14, the Immigrant Welcome Center will host an immigration lawyer from CUNY Citizenship Now! — the largest university legal assistance program in the nation — offering Queens immigrants free legal consultations and application assistance.

Open on weekdays from 9AM to 5PM, the Immigrant Welcome Center can be contacted via phone at 718-286-0644 and via email at [email protected]. In-person visits are by appointment only. The Community Mediation Services or CUNY Citizenship Now! representatives can also be reached via phone by contacting the Immigrant Welcome Center.

Since its opening on June 15, the Immigrant Welcome Center has directly interfaced with nearly 100 constituents, the majority of whom sought legal assistance and were referred to CUNY Citizenship Now! for free legal consultations. Members of Borough President Richards’ staff who oversee the Immigrant Welcome Center also continue to meet directly with community-based organizations and attend community events to interact with residents in need of services right in their own neighborhoods.

Additional information about Borough President Richards’ Immigrant Welcome Center can be found at www.queensbp.org/immigrantwelcomecenter, the Center’s dedicated webpage, complete with a community calendar and links to a wide array of resources.

“CUNY Citizenship Now! is proud to begin in-person immigration law services at the Office of the Queen’s Borough President, beginning September 14,” said CUNY Citizenship Now! Director ALLAN WERNICK. “COVID-19 will not stop us from providing free, high quality legal assistance to immigrants seeking a path to U.S. citizenship.”

“Community Mediation Services is excited to partner with Borough President Richards in assisting our fellow community members one excluded worker at a time,” said Community Mediation Services CEO JOHN HARRISON. “We encourage anyone whose income has been impacted by the pandemic to reach out to the CMS office for direct assistance.  We can be reached at 718-523-6868 or [email protected].”

Follow the Office of the Queens Borough President via @QnsBPRichards on Twitter and @QueensBPRichards on Facebook and Instagram