Biden: End Policies ‘Severely Limiting the Ability of Members of LGBTQ Community…from Qualifying for Asylum’

By CNSNews.com Staff | January 18, 2021 | 11:51am EST
(Photo by Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo by Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) - President-elect Joe Biden has promised to terminate policies followed under President Donald Trump that Biden says limited “the ability of members of the LGBTQ community” to claim asylum in the United States.

The promise is part of “The Biden Plan for Securing Our Values as a Nation of Immigrants.”

In the plan, Biden says he will end Trump policies that he describes as “severely limiting the ability of members of the LGBTQ community, an especially vulnerable group in many parts of the world, from qualifying for asylum as members of a ‘particular social group.’”

The Congressional Research Service explained U.S. asylum laws and policy in a 2019 report.

“The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) of 1952, as originally enacted, did not contain any language on asylum,” said CRS. ‘Asylum provisions were added and then revised by a series of subsequent laws.

“Currently, the INA provides for the granting of asylum to an alien who applies for such relief in accordance with applicable requirements and is determined to be a refugee,” CRS explains.

“The INA defines a refugee, in general, as a person who is outside his or her country of nationality and is unable or unwilling to return to that country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion,” says CRS.

Here is the section of “The Biden Plan for Securing Our Values as a Nation of Immigrants” that says Biden will end Trump’s polices that are “severely limiting the ability of members of the LGBTQ community, an especially vulnerable group in many parts of the world, from qualifying for asylum as members of a ‘particular social group:’”

This is a screen capture of a passage from "The Biden Plan for Securing Our Values as a Nation of Immigrants" as posted on Biden's campaign website.
This is a screen capture of a passage from "The Biden Plan for Securing Our Values as a Nation of Immigrants" as posted on Biden's campaign website.

End Trump’s detrimental asylum policies. The Statue of Liberty has long been a beacon to people “yearning to breathe free” around the world — including asylum-seekers and refugees. But the Trump Administration has worked against this tradition to drastically restrict access to asylum in the U.S., including imposing additional restrictions on anyone traveling through Mexico or Guatemala; attempting to prevent victims of gang and domestic violence from receiving asylum; systematically prosecuting adult asylum seekers for misdemeanor illegal entry; and severely limiting the ability of members of the LGBTQ community, an especially vulnerable group in many parts of the world, from qualifying for asylum as members of a “particular social group.” Biden will end these policies, starting with Trump’s Migrant Protection Protocols, and restore our asylum laws so that they do what they should be designed to do–protect people fleeing persecution and who cannot return home safely.” 

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