LGBTQ Immigration: Border and Beyond
LGBTQ+ and immigration justice advocates currently face critical challenges and opportunities. The previous administration prioritized rolling back rights and protections for LGBTQ+ people across a spectrum of federal agencies and
LGBTQ+ and immigration justice advocates currently face critical challenges and opportunities. The previous administration prioritized rolling back rights and protections for LGBTQ+ people across a spectrum of federal agencies and dramatically escalated attacks on immigrants – from increasing militarization at the Southern border to the separation of families to turning away asylum seekers, while allowing grave abuses by ICE and detention facilities to occur with impunity. This all-out assault against immigrants, refugees, and asylum-seekers dramatically increased LGBTQ+ immigrants’ vulnerability to detention, deportation, violence, and even death. Advocates and organizers are pushing the current administration and Congress to not only undo these harms, but also transform policies and practices at the border to respect the humanity of LGBTQ+ migrants. However, this transformation will not be easy. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and with increasing numbers of migrants arriving at the U.S./Mexico border seeking refuge and home in the United States, advocates and service providers must simultaneously address growing needs for resources on the ground, effectively respond to political and media rhetoric describing the “crisis” and “mess” at the border, and continue to fight against the criminalization of trans, queer, and Black asylum seekers. This workshop will provide a space to learn about these complex issues, including current and proposed immigration and asylum policy and practice changes and their impact on LGBTQ+ community members. It will also highlight a unique collaboration between Transgender Law Center, Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement, and other LGBTQ+ and migrants’ rights organizations: a holistic humanitarian response that integrates grassroots organizing, legal services and advocacy, and uplifts the leadership of the most impacted.
Desiree Flores, Program Director, U.S. Social Justice, Arcus Foundation
Guerline M. Jozef, Co-founder & Executive Director, Haitian Bridge Alliance
Emem DuPuis Maurus, Attorney, Transgender Law Center
Judy Yu, Senior Program Officer, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) Program, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund
Sponsored by: Arcus Foundation and Wellspring Philanthropic Fund