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High-Level Pronouncements Marred by Systemic Racism, Abuse of Asylum Seekers

(Washington, DC) – The administration of President Joe Biden has made slow progress protecting human rights in the United States, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2022. "The Biden administration has made some big-picture…
Hughes Van Ellis (left), a Tulsa Race Massacre survivor and World War II veteran, and Viola Fletcher (second right), oldest living survivor of the massacre, testify about the massacre’s ongoing impact before the US House of Representatives in Washington, DC, on May 19, 2021.
News

Ensure Rights, Wellbeing of Those Affected

(Abuja) – Nigeria’s Borno State government’s efforts to shut down government camps hosting thousands of displaced people by December 31, 2021 is creating risks and hardships, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities should suspend the camp…
The Bakassi Internally Displaced People's camp in Maiduguri, Nigeria, March 2020.
News

Surface Reforms by US Fail to Address Serious Abuses of Asylum Seekers

(Washington, DC) – The decision to revive the “Remain in Mexico” program at the US border will once again put asylum seekers at risk of kidnapping, extortion, rape, and other abuses, Human Rights Watch said today. It will also violate their right to…
 Americas Mexico Migrants
News

Justice Department Should Move Against Abusive, Discriminatory ‘Operation Lone Star’

(Washington, DC) – Texas has arrested more than 1,500 migrants since March 2021 under a discriminatory and abusive operation that targets suspected migrants for arrest, prosecution, and incarceration on state misdemeanor offenses, Human Rights Watch…
Texas Governor Greg Abbott talks about Operation Lone Star during a press conference at the Texas Department of Public Safety Weslaco Regional Office on April 1, 2021, in Weslaco, Texas.
News
After images of Border Patrol agents on horseback aggressively swinging lariats at and chasing Black migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border shocked the public in September, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas was quick to promise a…
A man stands with his hands on the back of a van marked "Border Patrol"
News

Groups Urge Biden Administration to Rescind Trump Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) Rules

Hon. Alejandro N. Mayorkas           Secretary of Homeland Security          U.S. Department of Homeland Security           2707 Martin Luther King…
Lizbeth, una mujer salvadoreña que busca asilo en Estados Unidos, posa  en la casa de un familiar en Tijuana, México, donde fue enviada a esperar por el resultado de su caso, el 5 de noviembre de 2019
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Case Management Programs Cost Less and Are More Humane than Imprisoning Asylum Seekers

A door has cracked open to the possibility of a future in which people fleeing their home countries might not be subjected to the oppressive walls of detention centers. In August, the US Department of Homeland Security announced a Case Management Pilot…
Photo of person being released from immigration detention.
Report
Summary As the harmful effects of immigration detention become more widely known and the appropriateness of detaining migrants is increasingly questioned, governments are looking at alternatives to detention as more humane and rights-respecting…
News

Pilot Programs Point Way to Rights-Respecting Models

(New York) – Pilot programs testing alternatives to immigration detention in several countries, including the United States, offer governments models for more humane and rights-respecting approaches, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today…
Illustration of a man hugging his family outside of a detention center
Report
  Summary In 2017, a US Border Patrol agent kneed a woman in the lower pelvis, leaving bruises and pain days later, according to her statement to a government official screening her asylum claim. In a separate incident that year, a Border…
News

Newly Obtained Documents Reveal Urgent Need for Justice, Reform

(New York) – Newly obtained United States government documents detail over 160 internal reports of misconduct and abuse of asylum seekers at the hands of US officials, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The documents report abuse by…
A man stands with his hands on the back of a van marked "Border Patrol"
News

UN Agencies, Governments Should Improve Assistance to Afghans at Risk

(New York) – Afghans at risk who have fled or are seeking to flee Afghanistan need greater international support, Human Rights Watch said today in a new policy briefing paper. The United Nations system and concerned governments should improve their…
Afghans from northern provinces who fled their homes due to the fighting between the Taliban and Afghan security forces take refuge in a public parc in Kabul, August 13, 2021. 
News

Regarding the Law Enforcement Coordination Council (LECC)

Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas Department of Homeland Security by electronic mail Dear Secretary Mayorkas: We write to express several urgent concerns about your September 29, 2021, announcement of the Law Enforcement Coordination Council (LECC).…
Two Customs and Border Protection agents on horseback approach three Haitian migrants standing in the river. The migrants are holding bags and shoes.
News

Fewer Than 12,000 Admitted; More Than 51,000 Places Unfilled

When US President Donald Trump announced an annual refugee admissions ceiling of 15,000 for fiscal year 2021 (FY21), outraged refugee rights advocates lamented the wholesale dismantling of a program that had rescued millions of refugees since the 1975…
Abdisellam Hassen Ahmed, a Somali refugee who had been stuck in limbo after President Donald Trump temporarily banned refugee entries, walks with his wife Nimo Hashi, and his 2-year-old daughter, Taslim, who he met for the first time after arriving at Salt Lake City International Airport, February 10, 2017.
News

Formal Complaint Submitted to the Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties

Katherine Culliton-González  Officer  U.S. Department of Homeland Security  Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties  Compliance Branch, Mail Stop #0190  2707 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE  Washington, D.C. 20528-…
Two Customs and Border Protection agents on horseback approach three Haitian migrants standing in the river. The migrants are holding bags and shoes.
News

Expulsions Violate Asylum Rights and Refugee Laws; Inflict Cruelty on Black, Brown, and Indigenous Immigrant Communities

President Joe Biden The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW Washington, DC 20500 September 21, 2021 Dear President Biden, As leaders of civil rights and human rights organizations, we write at an inflection point for your Administration’s…
Two Customs and Border Protection agents on horseback approach three Haitian migrants standing in the river. The migrants are holding bags and shoes.