U.S. policies and practices subjecting LGBTQ asylum seekers to human rights violations, arbitrary detention in often life-threatening conditions, and denials of and delays in refugee protection

Submission of Human Rights First to the United Nations Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity

This submission has been produced on the basis of Human Rights First’s years of experience in representing, researching, and advocating for refugees seeking humanitarian protection in the United States. The submission provides relevant excerpts of recent Human Rights First reports and other research on U.S. policies and practices that endanger the lives and safety of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) persons seeking refugee protection, subject LGBTQ asylum seekers to arbitrary detention in life-threatening conditions, and deny asylum to LGBTQ refugees in violation of U.S. law and international treaty obligations. The following sections address: Title 42 policy (Section I); immigration detention (Section II); expedited removal (Section III); Migrant Protection Protocols / “Remain in Mexico” (Section IV); asylum adjudication backlogs (Section V); one-year filing asylum ban (Section VI); third-country transit asylum ban (Section VII); and “metering” of asylum seekers at ports of entry (Section VIII).

Human Rights First urges the Independent Expert to recommend that the United States take all steps to firmly and permanently remove barriers to asylum, including Title 42, the use of expedited removal and immigration detention, and the one-year filing asylum deadline, that block LGBTQ and other refugees from seeking and receiving asylum protection in the United States, and to quickly resolve asylum adjudication backlogs.


Published on August 22, 2022


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