Access to U.S. Asylum



Past Work

What's Going On

Access to asylum in a safe, orderly, and humane way remains restricted due to unjust immigration policies that violate human rights.

Where It's Happening

What We're Doing

Human Rights First is leveraging our long history of research and expertise on the U.S. asylum system to advocate for smart and effective policies and tools to ensure that asylum seekers can exercise their legal right to seek and receive asylum in safety inside the United States.

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Access to U.S. Asylum

Rushed Timelines, Inadequate Access to Legal Representation Impede Meaningful Opportunity to Seek Asylum Under New Asylum Processing Rule

On May 31, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) began implementing a new asylum process, pursuant to an Interim Final Rule (referred to as the “Asylum Processing Rule,” or…

Fact Sheets

Treat People Seeking U.S. Refuge with Dignity, Not as Political Pawns

Recommendations to Congress, the Biden Administration, State and Local Governments In recent weeks, some state governors have used the transportation of migrants and asylum seekers to interior communities in an…

Fact Sheets

Upholding President Biden’s Asylum Commitments

18-Month Progress Checklist Since February 2021 Executive Order It has been more than one-and-a-half years since President Biden issued his February 2, 2021 Executive Order, directing steps to manage migration…

Fact Sheets

Fatally Flawed

“Remain in Mexico” Policy Should Never Be Revived On August 8, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the end of the Trump-era “Remain in Mexico” (RMX) policy. The…


Inadequate Access to Legal Representation, Rushed Timelines Impede Meaningful Opportunity to Seek Asylum Under New Asylum Processing Rule

On May 31, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) began implementing an Interim Final Rule (referred to as the “Asylum Processing Rule,” or APR) to adjudicate asylum cases of…

Fact Sheets

With Re-Termination of “Remain in Mexico,” Human Rights First Urges Permanent End to Inhumane Border Policies

WASHINGTON D.C. — The Biden administration today released companion memos to re-terminate the ill-named Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), or “Remain in Mexico,” a Trump-era policy that endangers the lives of…


Human Rights First and 38 Human and Civil Rights Leaders Tell President Biden: “Your Administration Stands at a Precipice”

WASHINGTON — Human Rights First President and CEO Michael Breen joined leaders of 38 human and civil rights organizations in delivering a letter to the White House on Tuesday evening…


Proposing Alternate ‘Remain in Mexico’ Raises Profound Human Rights Concerns

WASHINGTON — Human Rights First expressed its alarm and profound concern that the Biden administration is reportedly considering creating its own version of the notorious Trump administration policy ‘Remain in…


Immediate Actions that the Biden Administration Should Take to Prevent Further Harm under Remain in Mexico Following the Supreme Court Decision

Dear President Biden and Vice President Harris: In light of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Biden v. Texas, which concluded that the Biden administration acted within its authority to end…


Civil Society Letter on Immediate Actions to Mitigate the Harms of Title 42

Dear President Biden, Secretary Mayorkas, and Director Walensky: The right to seek asylum in the United States is in peril. In spite of conflicting court decisions, the White House and…


Extending Title 42 Would Escalate Dangers, Exacerbate Disorder, and Magnify Discrimination

In April 2022, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) determined that as of May 23, 2022, it would terminate the Title 42 order, which the Department of Homeland…


U.S. Asylum and Border Policies Resulting in Human Rights Violations

Human Rights First’s Submission for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants pursuant to Human Rights Council Resolution 43/6 …