The Trump administration has published a new rule that will effectively end the possibility of asylum for hundreds of thousands of people. Asylum is protection granted to persons forced to flee their home country due to persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. Without asylum many of those who request it will suffer torture or death. Jefferson County Immigration Rights Advocates (JCIRA) strongly opposes the proposed rule and asks your help to influence our government to withdraw it.
The international community has long recognized the need for asylum. The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and subsequent Conventions and Protocols obligate nations to grant asylum when justified and states that “no nation shall expel or return a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where his life or freedom would be threatened.” These documents were signed by the United States but, to our shame, were never ratified by the Senate. Nevertheless, common decency and respect for the unalienable rights endowed on all human beings require that asylum applicants be given a fair and sympathetic hearing.
Unfortunately, this has not been the case in our country. People seeking asylum in the U.S. often receive hearings that are neither just nor compassionate. Now potential asylees may face an even more restrictive process. On June 15 the administration proposed the new rule titled “Procedures for Asylum and Withholding of Removal; Credible Fear and Reasonable Fear Review.”
This is the latest step in the apparent plan to slam the door on immigrants, even those who are victims of violence and threats of violence. It continues the administration’s efforts to limit immigration into the U.S. by specifically targeting those seeking refuge in our country through asylum.
This is wrong.
If we allow this rule to take effect we will be turning our backs on those who seek and need our protection.
JCIRA objections include:
JCIRA believes that asylum applicants must be given a fair hearing, must be treated with respect and understanding, and that the United States must return to its role as a refuge for those needing our help and protection.
The proposed new rule is open for public comment until July 15. If you share JCIRA’s strong opposition to this proposed rule, please submit a comment expressing your opinion and feelings. You can read more about the proposed rule at the official Federal Register website, and can offer your comments by clicking on the green button labeled “Submit a Formal Comment.”
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We are an immigrant rights advocacy non-profit in the North Olympic Peninsula of Washington State