Posts Tagged 'ORAM'

ORAM Congratulates EU Court of Justice for Landmark Decision on Credibility Assessment in LGBTI Asylum Claims

EU FLAGPress Statement from ORAM

The Court of Justice of the European Union has issued a landmark decision on assessing the credibility of sexual minority asylum seekers. In A, B and C vs. Staatssecretaris van Veiligheiden Justitie, the Court disallowed inappropriate practices in evaluating the claims of asylum applicants claiming persecution based on their sexual orientation. ORAM hopes the Court’s ruling will bring about more consistent and humane treatment of these asylum seekers.

The Court ruled that EU states credibility assessment methods must comply with the Charter of Fundamental Rights — particularly the rights to human dignity and to private and family life.

The Court rejected several practices found in these cases: Intrusive questioning about an applicant’s sexual acts, use of explicit evidence like films documenting applicants’ intimate sexual conduct, and physical or medical tests purportedly revealing one’s sexual orientation.

Finally, the court held that a delay in asserting one’s LGBTI status does not necessarily indicate fraud, as allowances must be given to LGBTI applicants for the special kinds of difficulties they face.

ORAM will soon publish the first volume of its legal guidance series on refugee and asylum claims based on sexual orientation and gender identity. This meticulously researched and clearly written comparative work provides unparalleled guidance for adjudicators on credibility indicators used by major asylum countries in claims based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The volume draws on ORAM’s extraordinary expertise and field leadership in refugee protection training, as well as its research in international law, psychology and sociology. Together with ORAM’s other publications and materials, this work will be a significant contribution to the growing library of tools for LGBTI refugee adjudication and protection available to refugee professionals worldwide.

Related Reading:

Court of Justice of the European Union full judgement

EU Court: verification sexual orientation asylum seeker must not infringe fundamental rights (Intergroup on LGBT Rights)

New Report on LGBTI Refugees from ORAM

ORAM Rainbow Bridges 2012Rainbow Bridges, ORAM’s newest publication, shares the rare experience gained by ORAM during its yearlong pilot program assisting resettled LGBTI refugees in the San Francisco Bay Area. The refugees assisted had fled torture, severe harassment, and even execution in their countries of origin.

The guide is a treasure trove for individuals and organizations looking to lend their strength to victims of global homophobic violence by directly assisting in their U.S. integration. Rainbow Bridges includes:

  • Ways to secure U.S. admission for a refugee who is still overseas
  • Steps to build support systems for refugees among LGBTI and queer-friendly communities
  • Suggestions on providing a warm welcome to refugees during their first crucial months in the U.S.
  • Tips on safe and affordable housing for LGBTI refugees
  • Suggestions on how helping refugees can strengthen communities immeasurably

You can download the report here.

Reaching out to refugees persecuted for sexual orientation, gender identity

Neil Grungras of ORAM

photo: ORAM

Repost from UNHCR

WASHINGTON, DC, United States, June 29 (UNHCR) – Advocates like Neil Grungras are vital as accounts increasingly emerge of persecution and violence towards refugees and asylum-seekers in parts of the world based on sexual grounds. Grungras has spent many years advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex refugees and asylum-seekers, and is the founder and executive director of the San Francisco-based Organisation for Refuge, Asylum and Migration (ORAM). ORAM’s work includes education, representation, advocacy and capacity building on LGBTI issues. UNHCR Public Information Intern Dasha Smith spoke to him during a recent forum on LGBTI refugee protection in Washington, DC. Continue Reading Excerpts from the interview


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