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  • Women's Refugee Commission Expresses Serious Concerns in Anticipation Over Finalized Flores Regulations

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    Washington, D.C. – Earlier today, the Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Kevin McAleenan, announced at a press conference that the finalized regulations to the Flores Settlement Agreement (FSA) will be officially published on Friday, August 23rd.

    The FSA was established in 1997 as a result of litigation concerning the mistreatment of children in government immigration custody. The settlement lays out basic safeguards for these children, recognizes that detention is harmful to children, and makes clear that children should be placed in community settings. The settlement stated that the government should seek to release children without delay to a vetted sponsor, and if that is not possible, to hold children in the least restrictive setting possible. Prior to the FSA, children were held in punitive, jail-like settings, alongside unknown adults, for lengthy periods of time. The FSA sought to ensure the appropriate treatment of children and provide a minimum baseline for such treatment.

    Women's Refugee Commission Responds to UNSC Meeting about Rohingya Repatriation

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    The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is meeting today to discuss plans to repatriate Rohingya refugees, following an announcement made by the governments of Bangladesh and Myanmar last week. In August 2017, Myanmar security forces launched widespread and systematic attacks on civilians in Kachin, Rakhine, and Shan States, resulting in the largest and fastest-ever influx of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh.

    WRC files complaint with DHS OIG and CRCL regarding ‘Remain in Mexico’

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    WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC) filed a complaint on Friday with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Offices of Inspector General (OIG) and of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties (CRCL) calling for an investigation into 20 cases of family separation that resulted from the Trump administration’s Remain in Mexico (RIM) policy.

    The complaint – which includes details of all 20 cases in question – also called for the OIG and CRCL to report on steps taken by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and DHS – if any – to track those families separated under RIM.

    Women's Refugee Commission Condemns Raids on Immigrant Workers

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    WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, the Trump administration executed one of the largest single-state workplace enforcement actions in U.S. history when it raided multiple workplaces in Mississippi, detaining more than 680 immigrant workers. The raid follows a series of anti-immigrant regulatory and policy actions by the Trump administration to limit access to asylum at the U.S. border with Mexico and massively expand expedited removal, allowing the government to detain and rapidly deport a larger population of undocumented immigrants without a court hearing.

    U.S.-Guatemala Agreement Disregards People’s Rights and Safety

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    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Following a series of tweets from U.S. President Donald J. Trump threatening tariffs and other economic penalties, Guatemala and the U.S. signed a controversial agreement that would require anyone seeking protection in the U.S. who crossed through Guatemala to request asylum in Guatemala.

    Human Rights Organizations, Legal Experts Call on Morales to Uphold Guatemalan Court Decision on Safe Third Country Agreement

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    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Following the latest action by Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales to advance a Safe Third Country agreement with the United States, more than a dozen human rights organizations and individuals wrote to President Morales today urging him to reject the deal.

    “America Speaks Out: Stop Trump’s Cruel Treatment of Children at the Border”

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    Testimony before Senate Democratic Policy and Communications Committee Hearing, July 23, 2019

    Michelle Brané, senior director of the Women's Refugee Commission's Migrant Rights and Justice program, testified about the unnecessarily cruel policies that have been implemented at our southern border, and the proven, effective, alternative solutions that have been ignored by the Trump administration.

    Read her written testimony.

    Watch Michelle's testimony.

    For the Second Week in a Row, Trump Administration Announces New Plans to Target Migrant and Asylum-Seeking Families

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    For the second week in a row, the Trump administration has announced new plans to target migrant and asylum-seeking families. Tomorrow, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is expected to publish a rule in the U.S. Federal Register that would expand Expedited Removal (ER). ER currently allows border officials within 100 miles of the U.S. border to detain and deport undocumented immigrants who have been in the country fewer than two years – without affording them a hearing in front of an immigration judge. The new rule would expand that policy nationwide. There will be no public comment period.

    Trump Administration to Enact Interim Final Rule, Effectively Ending Asylum at U.S. Border with Mexico

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     A new rule scheduled to be published in the Federal Register tomorrow by the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security would effectively end asylum for anyone seeking safety in the U.S. at the border with Mexico – the majority of whom are fleeing danger in Central America.

    Statement on Redirection of Funds from the Northern Triangle Countries

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    More than 70 members of InterAction, including WRC, released a statement opposing redirection of funds from the Northern Triangle countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.

    Read the statement.