Yanin Senachai has joined APALC’s litigation team as a Skadden Fellow. The Skadden Fellowship is awarded to recent law school graduates who wish to devote their professional lives to providing legal services to the poor and those deprived of their civil or human rights. Yanin’s two-year fellowship project will focus on combating wage theft, labor exploitation and human trafficking of Thai low-wage workers through direct representation, civil litigation and policy advocacy.
Yanin is passionately committed to social justice and has extensive experience advocating for indigent immigrants facing domestic violence, poverty and labor exploitation. For six years prior to law school, Yanin coordinated a national resource center and organized trainings for Asian immigrant advocates at the Asian & Pacific Islander Institute on Domestic Violence. As a law student at the University of California at Berkeley, Yanin represented immigrant and refugee victims of violence in obtaining legal immigration status and helped elderly and disabled people of color obtain public benefits and relief from consumer debt. As a summer intern at APALC’s impact litigation unit, she assisted with class action law suits on behalf of Asian low-wage workers who suffered wage and hour violations and experienced racial discrimination.
For her passionate legal advocacy on behalf of indigent clients and low-income immigrants, Yanin received the 2012 Francine Diaz Memorial Award, named after a Berkeley Law Employment Discrimination Clinic student who was tragically killed in a car accident. In Yanin’s first year of law school, the Berkeley Law Foundation awarded her the Phoenix Fellowship, which provided substantial tuition support and funding for summer clerkships so that she could pursue a public interest career.
As a Thai immigrant herself, Yanin is excited to join APALC, which has a long history of representing exploited low-wage workers and which recently expanded its capacity to serve the community with a Thai language helpline.