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    Hearing Request to Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on Turnarounds of Asylum Seekers at U.S. Southern Border and Other Immigration Issues

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    Washington, DC —This week, the Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC), along with 13 partner organizations*, submitted a hearing request to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) to provide testimony during its 161 Period of Sessions on measures taken by the United States that impede access to asylum and interfere with the right to family life and other core human rights protections.

    The testimony would address several issues, including turnarounds to Mexico of Central American and other migrants arriving to the U.S. southern border to legally seek asylum, the separation of asylum-seeking families after entry into the US, abusive conditions within Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) facilities, and the expansion of immigration detention of asylum seekers, in some cases for prolonged periods of time, as a deterrent to future asylum seekers. 

    The requesting organizations believe that this hearing is necessary to bring a number of illegal, unjust, and harmful policies and actions against asylum seekers to light. 

    The following is an excerpt from the request:

    “The United States has adopted a number of policies and actions that severely impede access to asylum for migrants arriving at the United States/Mexico border, particularly from Central America, thereby resulting in a serious possibility of refoulement to dangerous conditions that jeopardize the life and safety of these individuals. These measures also separate families and thus have a very negative impact on the right to family life and family unity.”

    If the request is granted, representatives from these 14 organizations will provide testimony at the IACHR’s 161 Period of Sessions held March 15-22, 2017 in Washington, D.C.

    *Partner organizations: the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU); American Immigration Council (AIC); American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), Human Rights First (HRF); Innovation Law Lab; Institute for Women in Migration (IMUMI); Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States; Kino Border Initiative; Latin America Working Group (LAWG); Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS); Transnational Legal Clinic, University of Pennsylvania Law School; Immigration Clinic, University of Texas School of Law; and the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA).

    Contact:

    WRC – Leah Chavla, Program Officer, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202.750.8598; Tessa Wiseman, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202.261.2382 

    Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States – Kristen Lionetti, Policy Director, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202.629.5918

    Kino Border Initiative – Joanna Williams, Director of Education and Advocacy, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 520.287.2370

    LAWG – Daniella Burgi-Palomino, Senior Associate-Mexico, Migrant Rights, Border Issues, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202.546.7010

    WOLA – Kristel Mucino, Communications Director, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202.797.2171

    Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC) (as a supporting organization) – Jennifer Johnson, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202.795.9430