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Ragini Shah is a Clinical Professor of Law. Professor Shah joined Suffolk in 2007, founding Suffolk's first Immigration Clinic. The Immigration Clinic represents detained immigrants and unaccompanied minors in removal proceedings focusing on cases at the intersection of criminal, family law and immigration law. In addition to direct representation, the Clinic has also worked with local, state and national immigrants' rights advocacy groups helping to publish policy papers, training manuals and legislative proposals aimed at these intersections. Professor Shah also teaches Immigration Law and has supervised a number of students conducting internships with law offices working on immigration issues. Her scholarship examines the effectiveness of enforcement in the immigration context focusing on rights for undocumented youth, and the connections between international trade and migration. In 2012, she was granted a Fulbright award to deepen her research into these connections and from 2012-2013 conducted over 70 interviews with former migrants and their families in Mexico. In 2017, Professor Shah returned to Mexico to examine the impact of the Trump administration’s heightened border enforcement measures on unauthorized migrants’ decision making. This research, combined with the research from 2012-2013 forms the basis for Shah's forthcoming book tentatively titled, Constructed Movements, Migration, Racial Capitalism and Neoliberalism through the Eyes of Mexican Migrants. Constructed Movements argues that the asymmetric U.S.-Mexico relationship which includes the extraction of human and other natural resources from Mexico is responsible for displacing people from Mexico to the U.S., underlies seemingly contradictory U.S. border enforcement policies and creates a barrier to sustainable development in Mexico. The book highlights the work of two grassroots organizations fighting for a return of resources to migrant communities and improved treatment of migrant workers in the U.S. and Mexico.
Prior to joining Suffolk, Professor Shah was a Lecturer in Law and Clinical Staff Attorney in the Child Advocacy and Immigration Law Clinic at Columbia University School of Law. Before joining Columbia in 2003, Professor Shah was a staff attorney in a number of legal services organizations in the New York area serving low income tenants, immigrant detainees and immigrant youth. Professor Shah received her undergraduate degree from Northwestern University and her Juris Doctor from Northeastern University School of Law.
- Laying the Legal Foundation for a Right to Stay, 50 Sw L Rev 319 (2020)
- No Matter What: The Inevitability of Mexico-U.S. Migration and Its Lessons for Border Control Strategies, 55 WAYNE L. REV. 1851 (2010)
- Sharing the American Dream: Towards Formalizing the Status of Long Term Resident Undocumented Children in the United States, 39 COLUM. HUM. RTS. L. REV. 637 (2008)