We all want to live in a world where we look after each other, and everyone is treated with dignity, respect, and fairness.
Those seeking safety want the same thing any of us would want if we were in their shoes. Together, we can respond with compassion and respect for the people who arrive at our borders. Join us.
Amnesty International is the world’s largest human rights grassroots movement offering research, government advocacy, human rights education and activism to change the narrative so everyone can live free of violence and fear.
Every day, all over the world, people are forced – to leave their homes in search of safety someplace else. They are forced to flee to escape persecution and torture or other severe human rights abuses, armed conflict and horrific violence. They might have been targeted because of who they are, what they do, who they love, or what they believe. For example, for their ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity, or political opinions. Often, they are permanently displaced and are never able to return home.
President Donald Trump has continued to cut the U.S. refugee admissions number to historic lows, most recently setting the number of refugees to be admitted in Fiscal Year 2020 to 18,000, the lowest number in the history of the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program. He has also issued an Executive Order that would allow state and local jurisdictions to deny refugees to be resettled in their community, despite having been approved for resettlement and having a community waiting to receive them. Even though the majority of people in the United States support welcoming refugees, the Trump Administration has cruelly stripped away our most cherished values of welcome. Through the Longer Table Initiative, Amnesty International USA and its supporters have been working to stand with refugees and welcome them through community sponsorship and other initiatives.
Asylum-seekers have the same rights as all other human beings, to seek safety, and to receive a fair process. Yet, people seeking asylum at the U.S. southern border are turned away or deported without ever even having their claims heard in an immigration court. They are forced to return to countries where they may be tortured, imprisoned, or even killed. Others are sometimes held in detention without access to attorneys or charged with crimes for entering the country to ask for asylum. Children might be jailed, either with their parents or forcibly separated from their families for indefinite periods of time. Secretive tent courts place people in danger simply for the act of seeking safety in the U.S. Asylum agreements force people to seek safety in countries where they will not be safe and asylum bans limit people’s ability to access safety. The so-called ‘Remain in Mexico’ policy forces people seeking safety to wait indefinitely in Mexico, in dangerous conditions and without access to lawyers as they fight for their asylum cases. Through executive orders and policies, the Trump administration has been working to make seeking safety in the United States as hard as possible, if not impossible. Current policies are based on fear-mongering, racism, hatred, and xenophobia instead of humanity and compassion. U.S. policies cannot continue to punish asylum-seekers for exercising the rights that they have – join us and stand against these policies.