Migrant Legal Aid: Advocating for Farmworkers in Michigan

Migrant Legal Aid is a nonprofit organization that has been fighting for migrant workers’ rights since 1973. In YEAR, the organization changed its name from Michigan Migrant Legal Assistance Project to Migrant Legal Aid to better reflect our mission and values.

Our Mission

Growing justice to protect the dignity, health, and livelihood of migrant farmworkers.

Our goal is to deliver free legal services to those who would otherwise not receive any help.​ We focus on:

Wage Protection

Child and Family Nutrition

Food Security

Health and Welfare

Workplace & Housing Safety

As part of our work, we take on cases involving the overuse of pesticides, illegal searches and seizures, unfit housing, lack of healthcare access, and late or non-payment of wages.


Facing poverty, language barriers and discrimination, migrant workers often struggle to maintain basic human dignity. Through our programs and services, MLA stands up for the rights of workers, ensuring that they have proper housing, work under safe conditions, and earn a fair wage. MLA also advocates for legislation and policies that support migrant and seasonal farmworkers. We also provide education and outreach to migrant labor camps, empowering workers and helping them address injustice and inequity.

MLA is an independent non-profit organization governed by a volunteer board of directors and operated by small staff. The agency also accepts referrals from other non-profits and community stakeholders, including the Hispanic Center of Western Michigan, Farmworker Legal Services, Latin Americans United for Progress, Hispanic American Council, Legal Aid of Western Michigan, and private attorneys.

Our Team

Teresa Hendricks

Executive Director


Senior Litigator

Mary Bennett


Ben O’Hearn

Litigation Director


Molly Spaak


Karen Barrose


Mya Veen

Spring 2021 Intern

Looking for Ways to Get Involved?

Community engagement is core to our success at MLA. If you want to volunteer, donate, or join our board, we would love to hear from you.
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