Erin Barnaby

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Professor César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández literally wrote the book on “crimmigration,” the collision of two legal frameworks rooted in systemic racism–civil immigration law and the criminal legal system–toward one disastrous end. That is, targeting people of racially marginalized backgrounds for deportation or lifetime banishment from everything they know as home. Adina Appelbaum, Esq. created and leads the Immigration Impact Lab, the Capital Area Immigrant Rights (CAIR) Coalition’s first-ever federal courts and appellate impact litigation project.

On Thursday, May 2, at 6pm ET, García Hernández and Appelbaum will come together at First Congregational UCC in Washington, D.C., for a discussion sparked by García Hernández’ latest book, Welcome the Wretched: In Defense of the “Criminal Alien.” The event will also be livestreamed.

  • WHAT: Discussion on crimmigration, the harmful intersection of two legal schemes rooted in systemic racism—immigration and the criminal legal system
  • WHERE: First Congregational UCC, 945 G Street, NW Washington, DC 20001
  • WHEN: Thursday, May 2 at 6:00 p.m. EST
  • HOW: Click here to RSVP in person. Click here to receive live stream instructions.

About This Discussion
The Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights (CAIR) Coalition is excited to sponsor this conversation with criminal-immigration experts César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández, author of Migrating to Prison and Welcome the Wretched, and Adina Appelbaum, Program Director for CAIR Coalition’s Immigration Impact Lab.

The two will discuss the disproportionate consequences of involvement in the criminal legal system on immigrants, including people of color and those with significant family and communities throughout the DMV.

García Hernández is in the midst of a coast-to-coast book tour for Welcoming the Wretched, in which he argues for divorcing the criminal legal system from immigration law. He holds the Gregory H. Williams Chair in Civil Rights and Civil Liberties at The Ohio State’s Moritz College of Law. After first publishing Crimmigration Law in 2015, Professor García Hernández’s follow-up – Migrating to Prison: America’s Obsession with Locking Up Immigrants — was called “a chilling, timely overview of the American tendency to first exploit and then criminalize migrants” by Kirkus Reviews. His TED talk about closing immigration prisons has nearly 1.6 million views.

Appelbaum has litigated several individual and class action impact cases on behalf of immigrant adults and children who are detained and facing deportation involving asylum law, due process and detention, and the intersection of criminal and immigration law, including Bah v. Barr, et al. No. 1:19-CV-641, 2019 WL 4247823 (E.D. Va. Sept. 6, 2019), Obando-Segura v. Whitaker, No. GLR-17-3190, 2019 WL 423412 (D. Md. Feb. 1, 2019), Martinez v. Sessions, 892 F.3d 655 (4th Cir. 2018), Mauricio-Vasquez v. Whitaker, 910 F.3d 134 (4th Cir. 2018), and Mauricio-Vasquez v. Crawford, No. 1:16-cv-01422 (AJT), 2017 WL 1476349 (E.D. Va. Apr. 24, 2017). As an adjunct professor, Adina co-taught a seminar on the intersection of criminal and immigration law at the University of the District of Columbia, David A. Clarke School of Law.

Weaving legal analysis with real-life cases of human beings caught at the Dystopian intersection of criminal and immigration law, García Hernández and Appelbaum will offer alternatives that value and support human lives.

The discussion is free and open to the public. RSVP here and watch online here. To schedule an interview with Mr. García Hernández or Ms. Appelbaum, Erin Barnaby, at Books can be purchased on or May 2 at the event.