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Marcy Hersh and the Fight for Female Refugees

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"When a crisis happens, women and girls are separated from the usual mechanisms that keep them safe and protected. It is inevitable that gender-based violence, in particular, increases," says Marcy Hersh, Senior Advocacy Officer at the Women's Refugee Commission.

Advocates Call ICE Raids ‘Classic Reproductive Oppression’

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"Many of the women asylum seekers being targeted by DHS were escaping gender-based violence in their countries of origin. During migration, it is believed that 80 percent of women and girls crossing into the United States by way of Mexico are raped during their journey."

Why Is the US Deporting Refugee Families?

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Rather than ensure access to protection and justice for these refugees fleeing violence, we continue to see the Administration…respond with detention and other efforts to deter, said Katharina Obser.

Feds plan raids nationwide targeting families for deportation

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“It is outrageous that the Administration plans to conduct raids on families who have fled persecution and violence,” said Michelle Brané.

Democratic Candidates Blast Obama Administration Plan To Deport Families

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Michelle Brané said she had not received briefings from the administration. But she worried that some families facing deportation may not have had proper legal representation, especially if their cases sped through the courts.

Immigration raids shouldn't be used against refugees, say advocates

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"It's not illegal to ask for protection, and we should stop treating them as if we're violating a law. They're asserting their international right to protection," Michelle Brané said.

US plan to deport undocumented families angers Democratic candidates

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"The image of sending women and children  back to one of the most dangerous places in the world over the Christmas holiday does not show the kind of leadership that this administration has been saying they want to take on migration and refugees," Michelle Brané said.

Thousands of Central American Kids Are Back at Our Border. Here’s What You Need to Know.

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"You can make the direct comparison to the situation in Europe," says Jennifer Podkul of the Women's Refugee Commission. "Look at what's happening in the home country and why people are leaving, and it has nothing to do with whether or not [there is] a functioning asylum system."

Among flood fleeing Syria, a trickle crosses ocean to brave Central American smuggling routes

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If refugees can’t reach their destinations — and declare asylum there — legally, smugglers will help them to do it illegally, according to Jennifer Podkul at the Women's Refugee Commission.

ICE Appoints Family Residential Center Federal Advisory Committee Members

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ICE announced the list of appointments to the Advisory Committee on Family Residential Centers. The committee’s charter requires that membership consist of up to 15 members, representing a variety of perspectives, to serve in one-year, two-year, or three-year terms.

Central Americans Flee to USA to Escape Mayhem Back Home

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"That refutes this concept that (the refugees) are just coming to the United States for work, that this isn't a refugee crisis, that they're just trying to take advantage of Obama's policies," said Michelle Brané, director of migrant rights and justice for the Women's Refugee Commission. "They're clearly trying to flee anywhere they can go."

As Asylum Seekers Swap Prison Beds For Ankle Bracelets, Same Firm Profits

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"We were not very pleased that the contract ended up going to GEO Care, that is affiliated directly with a company that had prison ties," says Michelle Brané, director of migrants and justice.

Women Refugees Are “Running For Their Lives” In Central America

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“If someone is going after a young man who is refusing to join a gang, they’ll threaten their mother, sister, or girlfriend. Women also face threats of rape, domestic violence, and there are no shelters or places to keep them safe," said Michelle Brané, of the Women’s Refugee Commission.

Global Citizenship Education Underpins Efforts of Youth to Build Peaceful Societies

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According to the Women’s Refugee Commission, all 51 countries experiencing some form of conflict since 1986 also reported high levels of sexual violence against adolescent girls.

tags: Education

Young, Illegal and Alone

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Fleeing violence in Central America, unaccompanied children enter a thicket of inconsistent deportation laws. "A more straightforward approach would be to adopt an immigration law that considers a child’s best interest," said Jennifer Podkul of the Women’s Refugee Commission. 

The Refugees at Our Door

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"You can lock people inside a burning house, you can close the front door, but they will find a way out," says Michelle Brané, director of the Migrant Rights and Justice program at the Women’s Refugee Commission. "The U.S. doesn’t want to recognize this as a refugee situation. They want Mexico to be the buffer, to stop arrivals before they get to our border."

ICE announces caseworker program for immigrant families

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Alternatives to detention "less harmful and less expensive," said Michelle Brané, so they are are good first step. However, "we are disappointed that it went to a company that focuses more on corrections and prisons."

The US must raise the cap for Syrian refugees

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"Helping these people is first and foremost a humanitarian imperative," said Stephanie Peters, a commissioner for the Women's Refugee Commission.

Why Is the U.S. Not Doing More to Help Syrian Refugees?

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"The U.S. could and should be doing more. The silence of the White House on this is unacceptable," said Michelle Brané of the Women's Refugee Commission.

Are Male Detainees Treated Differently Than Women?

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In February, a U.S. District Court Judge ruled that jailing the mothers as a deterrent to future migrants was “likely unlawful” and ordered the government to stop.