Women

Women

Point of No Return: The Fear and Criminalization of Central American Refugees
On World Refugee Day 2017, CMS and Cristosal (El Salvador) released a report detailing ten cases from the Northern Triangle of Central America—four from El Salvador and three each from Guatemala and from Honduras—which chronicle the journeys of refugees in search of protection, how the system did not protect them, and what they face upon return to their home countries. The report concludes that the United States and Mexico are returning Central American asylum-seekers to danger, and, as a result, are violating the international principle of non-refoulement. Overall, 18 cases were interviewed and analyzed for the study. The report includes several policy recommendations for the governments to consider.

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US Immigration Policy and the Case for Family Unity
This paper reviews and critically evaluates the principle of family unity, a hallmark of US immigration policy over the past 50 years and the most important mechanism for immigration to the United States. Family unity is critical for promoting immigrant integration, social and economic well-being, and intergenerational mobility. However, several US policies and practices contribute to prolonged periods of family separation by restricting travel and effectively locking in a large number of people either inside or outside of the United States. Furthermore, increasingly aggressive enforcement practices undermine family unity for a large number of undocumented and mixed-status families.

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Mission to the Middle East 2017: The Plight of the Displaced
This report from a fact-finding mission to Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, and Greece offers findings and recommendations based on the delegation’s conversations with actors in the region, including refugees and displaced persons, care providers, representatives of the Catholic Church, their aid agencies, and United Nations officials.

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Hiu Ling Chan of Leiden University Institute for Area Studies reviews Beyond Borders: Stories of Yunnanese Chinese Migrants of Burma by Wen-Chin Chang. Since the Chinese Communist takeover in 1949 and subsequent political upheavals in China, an unprecedented number of Yunnanese refugees...

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Migration Experts Series | Eunice Lee
Eunice Lee, Co-Director of the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies at the University of California, Hastings discusses her paper, “Seeking a Rational Approach to a Regional Refugee Crisis: Lessons from the Summer 2014 ‘Surge’ of Central American Women and...

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Seeking a Rational Approach to a Regional Refugee Crisis: Lessons from the Summer 2014 “Surge” of Central American Women and Children at the US-Mexico Border
In the early summer months of 2014, an increasing number of children and families from the Northern Triangle countries of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala — three of the most dangerous countries in the world — began arriving at the US-Mexico border in search of safety and protection. Responses to this “surge,” and explanations for it, varied widely in policy, media, and government circles. Two competing narratives emerged. One argues that “push” factors in their home countries drove children and families to flee as bona fide asylum seekers; the other asserted that “pull” factors drew these individuals to the United States. The first section of this paper examines and critiques the Obama administration’s policies during and after the 2014 summer surge, which took the form of expanded family detention, accelerated removal procedures, raids, and interdiction. The second section examines the “push” factors behind the migration surge — namely, societal violence, violence in the home, and poverty and exclusion in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. The penultimate section explores the ways in which the United States’ deterrence-based policies echo missteps of the past, particularly through constructive refoulement and the denial of protection to legitimate refugees. The paper concludes by offering recommendations to the US government for a more effective approach to the influx of Central American women and children at its border, one that addresses the reasons driving their flight and that furthers a sustainable solution consistent with US and international legal obligations and moral principles.

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Migration Experts Series | Karen Musalo
Karen Musalo, Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies at the University of California, Hastings discusses her paper, “Seeking a Rational Approach to a Regional Refugee Crisis: Lessons from the Summer 2014 ‘Surge’ of...

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