Plenary: How Policies Shape Lives: The Impact of Immigration Policy on Children and Families

Closing Plenary Session

This session will be live streamed

Presented by Andre Segura, J.D., Legal Director, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Texas; and Manijeh Daneshpour, Ph.D., LMFT, Professor of Marriage and Family Therapy, Department of Couple and Family Therapy, Alliant International University, Irvine, CA.

Presider: Maureen Perry-Jenkins, Ph.D., 2017 NCFR Program Chair

Register for live stream  |  Watch video recording (open to conference and live-stream registrants)

9:00 AM
10:45 AM
Grand Ballroom B
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About the Session

Pre-Address Agenda

  • Introduction: Maureen Perry-Jenkins, Ph.D., 2017 NCFR Program Chair
  • Welcome: Emilie Smith, Ph.D., University of Georgia, Plenary Sponsor
  • Presentation of Awards:
  • NCFR Student Award to Rachel Arocho, M.S.; Presenter: Kimberly Crossman, Ph.D., Students and New Professionals Board Representative
  • Jessie Bernard Outstanding Research Proposal From a Feminist Perspective Award to Joy Heafner, M.A.; Presenter: Tara Saathoff-Wells, Ph.D., Feminism and Family Studies Section Chair
  • Plenary Address
Andre Segura



Sponsored by the University of Georgia

Immigration is a topic of tremendous debate and trepidation in the United States. Stories of families being separated and/or forcefully deported has raised fear for communities, families, and children.

The aim of this plenary session focused on immigration and families is twofold. The first goal is to provide an overview of current macro-level policy and laws in the United States that directly impact the lives of immigrant and refugee families. To that end, Andre Segura, J.D., legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Texas, will provide an overview of current policy issues surrounding immigration and families. 

Manijeh Daneshpour

The second goal is to help attendees gain a better understanding of how these policies have both intended and unintended effects on families and children. Manijeh Daneshpour, Ph.D., a professor and family therapist, will discuss the ways in which current immigration policy and laws are playing out in the lives of families. Thus, this session will explore how macro-level immigration policies trickle down to shape the daily experiences of families.

An aim of this session will be to document the harmful and unfair ways that immigration can affect families, and also to highlight ways in which individuals and families have been instrumental in positively changing narratives about immigrant families and creating change at community, state, and federal levels.

This plenary session will take place Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017, from 9 to 10:45 a.m. Eastern.

Session Objectives: 

  1. To highlight current policy around issues of immigration, deportation and refugee families in the U.S.  
  2. To feature research and evidence-based best practices that address the unique issues and challenges facing immigrant and refugee families.
  3. To critically examine how macro-level policies and laws shape the lives of immigrant and refugee families, and to recognize the roles that immigrant and refugee families play in creating healthy families and communities and in stimulating new policy and laws.

About the Presenters

Andre Segura

Andre Segura, J.D., is the legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Texas, which he has led in litigating Texas’s own anti-immigrant legislation (SB4) and monitoring ICE and CBP conduct. Formerly, Andre was the Senior Staff Attorney at the Immigrants’ Rights Project of the ACLU. In this position, he litigated cases and engaged in advocacy nationwide to protect the civil rights of immigrant communities, including challenges to President Trump’s executive orders establishing a Muslim ban, attacking sanctuary cities, and expanding immigration enforcement. His practice centers on immigration enforcement abuses by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. Andre’s notable cases include challenges to anti-immigrant laws in six states, a damages action on behalf of 14 individuals unlawfully detained during a residential raid by federal and local officials, a lawsuit on behalf of mothers and children held at the Artesia detention facility challenging unconstitutional policies that deny a fair asylum process, and a class action demonstrating at trial that Sheriff Joe Arpaio and the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office maintained a pattern and practice of racial profiling.

Andre is a frequent commentator on matters relating to police practices and the rights of immigrants in both English and Spanish media outlets, including CNN, MSNBC, Univision, Telemundo, The New York Times, and many others. Andre also serves as the Director of Diversity and Inclusion for the ACLU’s National Legal Department.

Born and raised in Houston, Texas, to Colombian immigrant parents, Andre received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering with highest honors from the University of Texas at Austin in 2002 and a J.D. from New York University School of Law in 2006. He was previously a Marvin M. Karpatkin Fellow with the ACLU’s Racial Justice Program, a litigation fellow with the ACLU’s Northern California affiliate, and law clerk to U.S. District Court Judge Napoleon A. Jones, Jr.

Manijeh Daneshpour

Manijeh Daneshpour, Ph.D., is the system-wide director and professor of marriage and family therapy at the Department of Couple and Family Therapy at Alliant International University in Irvine, California and a licensed marriage and family therapist with over 20 years of academic, research, and clinical experience. She received her doctorate in the field of marriage and family therapy from the University of Minnesota. She is from Iran and identifies herself as a third-wave feminist. Dr. Daneshpour's main areas of research, publications, and presentations have been centered on issues of multiculturalism, social justice, third-wave feminism, premarital and marital relationships, and Muslim family dynamics. She has studied Muslim families not as a religious group but as individuals, members of family units, and a distinct group within their own societal context. She has recently published a book — Family Therapy with Muslims — using classic and contemporary family therapy theories in working with Muslim families cross culturally.



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