Fall 2020: CGRS Newsletter

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Comment Today: Oppose Dangerous New Rule Expanding Surveillance of Immigrant Communities

On September 11, the Trump administration issued an alarming proposed rule that would impose new and invasive biometrics requirements for asylum seekers and other immigrants, as well as U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents filing any kind of immigration petition. This rule would result in unprecedented mass surveillance of our communities, putting the safety and privacy of millions at great risk. Advocates are particularly concerned that the rule’s intrusive measures could have a chilling effect on asylum seekers and other immigrant survivors eligible for special protections.

The public has until midnight on Tuesday, October 13, to speak out and submit public comments opposing this dangerous new rule. Learn more from the Alliance for Immigrant Survivors and take action today!  

CGRS Director Karen Musalo Participates in Panel with Congressman Joaquin Castro

Earlier this month, CGRS Director Karen Musalo joined a panel of U.S. and Canadian asylum law experts for a briefing with Congressman Joaquin Castro, convened following a landmark Canadian court decision striking down the country’s longstanding safe third country agreement with the United States. Panelists discussed the draconian U.S. policies that ultimately forced the Canadian court to conclude that the United States can no longer be considered a safe country for refugees. Click here for highlights from the remarks presented by Karen and Congressman Castro!

Defending Refugee Survivors of Domestic Violence

This summer marked significant progress in our ongoing efforts to challenge former Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ 2018 Matter of A-B- ruling. In July we celebrated a major win in our lawsuit with the American Civil Liberties Union, Grace v. Barr, which challenges the implementation of A-B- in initial asylum screenings. In August the Ninth Circuit overturned three Board of Immigration Appeals decisions denying asylum to women fleeing gender-based violence in Central America and Mexico. Attorney General William Barr struck back in September, issuing a sweeping decision in the case Matter of A-C-A-A-LEARN MORE

Welcoming Back Anne Dutton

CGRS is thrilled to welcome Anne Dutton back to our team as our newest staff attorney! After graduating with a J.D. and Master of Social Work from the University of Minnesota, Anne completed a 2017 Equal Justice Works Fellowship with CGRS. She returns to CGRS following a clerkship with the Honorable Gerard E. Lynch of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, where she worked on a diverse range of civil and criminal federal appeals, including several immigration cases. Back at CGRS, Anne will be providing vital support to our strategic litigation and technical assistance teams. We couldn’t be happier to have her back on board!

New Asylum Resources from CGRS

CGRS is excited to announce the release of several new resources to support advocates serving asylum seekers, available now through our technical assistance program, including:

  • A three-part litigation update on Matter of A-B-, including CGRS’s adjudication observations of the post-A-B- landscape at each procedural level
  • A new practice advisory on litigating family-based asylum claims following Attorney General Barr’s restrictive ruling in Matter of L-E-A-
  • Two new practice advisories on the Trump administration’s restrictive new rule limiting access to employment authorization documents (EADs) for asylum seekers
  • Two new practice advisories with updates on current litigation challenging the third country transit bar, the bar’s application in children’s cases, and advocacy considerations for asylum seekers
  • Three new country conditions toolkits to support fear-of-gang asylum claims from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras
  • A new pro se manual on country conditions research for asylum applicants without legal representation
  • A recording of a CGRS webinar on country conditions in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras for asylum claims based on harm to children
  • A new practice advisory, co-authored with the ACLU, providing a summary of the recent D.C. Circuit Court opinion in Grace v. Barr and practical guidance on the impact of the Grace litigation for asylum seekers at all stages of the asylum process

If you would like to access these resources to support a client’s asylum case, simply submit a technical assistance request using our online portal. If you have already submitted a request for your case and would like to request these new materials, please email us with your case number at CGRS-TA@uchastings.edu.