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WATCH: Asylum, An Essential Lifeline

Jun 25, 2019

Blog Post

Asylum is very much in the news today. But despite how much we’re hearing about it, there is significant misunderstanding about what asylum means and confusion around recent changes to U.S. asylum policy, especially at the southern border. 

HIAS has released a new short video to help people better understand asylum. It provides a historical context, explains the complicated process all asylum seekers must follow, and lets us hear from several people who have received asylum as they share in their own words what this protection has meant to them.

Asylum is a legal protection granted to people fleeing persecution based on their race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. An asylum seeker is someone who has applied for protection, but has not yet received any legal recognition or status.

The right to seek asylum is guaranteed under U.S. and international law, however, the issue has become highly politicized in recent years and today asylum seekers who present themselves at a port of entry may be detained or turned away.

HIAS works in the United States and 10 countries, helping to secure protection and legal status for asylum seekers and fighting for just and humane national and international asylum laws.

HIAS is sending lawyers to the border to provide legal assistance to asylum seekers and activating the Jewish community to advocate, volunteer, and take action to help asylum seekers.

Please join us and support our work on this important issue. To learn more about asylum, please explore the links below.