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    Every year, thousands of asylum seekers are detained by the U.S. government, sometimes until their asylum cases are decided—which can amount to days, weeks, months or even years. Many of those detained are women and children.

    The Women’s Refugee Commission’s Detention and Asylum Program works to ensure that these asylum seekers are not held longer than necessary, that they are treated fairly and that their basic rights are respected. The program includes a variety of projects geared toward ensuring that U.S. laws and policies protect women, unaccompanied children and families. 

    Read our fact sheet on our Migrant Rights and Justice Program (formerly Detention and Asylum Program)

      Detention and Asylum Resources

      halfway_coverHalfway Home: Unaccompanied Children in Immigration Custody
      Women's Refugee Commission, February 2009

      The Women's Refugee Commission and the law firm of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP embarked on a landmark study of the conditions of care and confinement for children in immigration proceedings without a parent or guardian. Also available: Executive Summary

      familydetenLocking Up Family Values: The Detention of Immigrant Families
      Women's Refugee Commission, February 2007

      The Women's Refugee Commission and Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service examines the expanding penal approach to family detention in the U.S. to inform the development of policy and practice that serves the best interests of family and children.

      kids_video "What Happens When I Go to Immigration Court?"
      Women's Refugee Commission, Holland & Knight, July 2006
      "What Happens When I Go To Immigration Court?" is a first-of-a-kind educational video to orient children in immigration court.
      Download the companion user's manual here.

      Press Releases on Family Detention

      Read more in our press room

      Selected Media Coverage on Family Detention

      Read more in our press room