Christina Asencio

Director Research & Analysis, Refugee Protection

As Director of Research & Analysis for Refugee Protection, Christina Asencio advocates for the U.S. government to bring immigration laws, policies, and practices in line with international refugee and human rights law.

Most recently, Christina was an attorney with the Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project in Arizona where she represented detained asylum-seekers in their immigration removal proceedings, including as court-appointed counsel for individuals deemed incompetent to represent themselves.

Prior to that, Christina spent a decade working in refugee protection in the Americas, Middle East, and Southeast Asia with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and various NGOs. As Head of Protection with UNHCR Brazil, she coordinated the agency’s national refugee protection response to the influx of Venezuelan refugees and migrants, including at Brazil’s northern border, and oversaw technical support provided to the Brazilian asylum authority.

Previously, she worked with UNHCR in the Dominican Republic on issues of asylum and statelessness and in Jordan adjudicating complex asylum claims. Christina was awarded a Public Service Fellowship by Boston University School of Law to work with Asylum Access Ecuador to provide free legal assistance to refugees in their asylum claims and later worked with Asylum Access Thailand supporting the provision of free legal services for refugees in Bangkok. Christina also previously represented survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking in their affirmative U.S. immigration applications such as VAWA, U, and T visas.

Christina received her J.D. from Boston University School of Law, spent a semester studying international law at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, and received her B.A. cum laude in Political Science and International Studies with a minor in Foreign Languages from the University of Miami. She speaks Spanish and Portuguese. She is licensed to practice law in Florida, New York, and Massachusetts.

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