enters the United States seeking asylum is automatically put into jail. Hard to
believe, right? But it’s true.
seekers — even people who have committed no crime and are simply fleeing
violence — are currently put into detention facilities upon arrival in the
United States, until they are granted a “credible fear” interview with a
government official. Some are jailed for weeks or months until this interview,
which determines if they can legally request asylum. Even after the interview,
they may still be kept imprisoned while waiting for a resolution of their
request for asylum! The jailing of asylum seekers violates human rights and our
deepest values. Learn more.
Take action now to defend asylum seekers. Right now, we have a unique and rare opportunity to change the system. The new comprehensive
immigration reform bill includes significant and much-needed protections for
refugees, asylum seekers, and torture survivors. The
Senate Judiciary Committee, chaired by Sen. Patrick Leahy, is currently considering the immigration bill. Send a message to Senator Leahy using the form below or call him at 202-224-7703.
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Dear [Decision Maker],
Thank you for your years as a human rights leader. As your committee takes up S. 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act, I urge you to protect the provisions in the bill that provide humane alternatives to detention for asylum-seekers. Protections for vulnerable populations -- such as refugees who are survivors of torture and human trafficking -- must not be sacrificed.As it is currently written, S. 744 would do the following:- Discourage the detention of torture survivors- Ensure that detainees are interviewed within five days of detention, allowing them to explain their story and request asylum- Increase oversight of detention facilities to curb abuses- Require the establishment of community alternatives to detention programs
Sincerely,[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP]
689 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02139-3302
p 617-868-6600 | f 617-868-7102