Summarize your idea/solution Our web application allows immigrants and refugees to quickly report an issue to their local legal offices that take on pro-bono cases and or these cases in general. Furthermore, this application allows immigrants and refugees to ask questions related to law and get answers from experts and people with similar experiences. This will help other immigrants and refugees to search previous questions and answers.
Describe your idea and how it addresses the challenge What happens when racial discrimination occurs and an individual is left feeling helpless and does not feel he or she has access to justice? We have created an application that gives immigrants and refugees a way to quickly document an event they feel treated them unfairly. We chose an application that can be accessed via smartphone and via website to give the user a choice on the platform they want to report their issue.
Nowadays, the internet allows us to search for answers on any topic. However, it is sometimes hard to know how accurate those answers are, and who wrote them. When it comes to recent immigrants and refugees living in the United States, they have limited knowledge of the law. They also do not have access to legal knowledge. Our idea is to build an application that allows people to search for previous questions and ask new questions similar to StackOverflow for developers. Besides, posting questions and answers, this application will allow people to connect with lawyers in their area. This idea can later be expanded to other areas of law since questions contain tags for easy search.
How would your idea serve a local community? This idea sends a clear message to refugees and immigrants in a local community that they, too, can take ownership of their rights in the United States. Furthermore, this idea builds a bridge between refugees and immigrants with the law enforcement community such as lawyers, police force, and government officials. Finally, this idea generates business for lawyers by allowing users to see lawyers that are in their area. It will help people connect with their local lawyers, and give lawyers new clients.
Who will use the solution? This solution is primarily for immigrants and refugees residing in the United States. With a user-friendly application, the user can easily report an issue that will then be directed to a local legal office that takes pro-bono cases. Furthermore, since many new immigrants and refugees do not know the law in which they live, this application will give them access to encrypted FAQs on various topics such as healthcare, housing, and discrimination.
What makes your solution unique, innovative, and impactful? This application is quick access to justice for immigrants and refugees who often are drawn into a long legal process before any justice is found. This application gives these groups hope in the legal community that the legal community is there for them because of our use of google translator, user-friendly application, and encrypted FAQs on various topics that they might want an answer to. Finding one place where people can connect, ask and answer questions about immigration in the manner that person without any education in law fields can understand is hard to find. This will help people who seek information to get them. Voting system on answers will also help everyone to know which answer is probably most accurate, and help them take the right action. Moreover, there is a minimal sms based interface which allows basic access to the system without the use of a smartphone or internet access, just a normal cellular connection.
Sponsoring Organization Student at Michigan State University, College of Law
Try it out http://my.fit.edu/~mknezevic2013/