OCA Condemns Trump Administration’s Attack on Asylum Seekers


29 August 2019

Contact: Thu Nguyen | Communications Manager

202.223.5500 | tnguyen@ocanational.org

Washington, DC -  OCA strongly condemns the Trump Administration’s most recent attack on immigrants seeking refuge in the United States. On Monday, the Administration advanced a regulation that would implement even more barriers for asylees seeking relief; namely prohibiting them from obtaining work authorization. This is only part of President Trump’s hard-line proposal, which also included adding fees to asylum applications and a 180-day resolution deadline to asylum petitions. These actions will effectively accelerate the asylum proceedings that occur before a judge and speed up court decisions, raising questions of due process. Particularly in cases of asylum, consideration of circumstances is critical to judgement: Trump’s new rule rushes the entire process. 

The rule additionally removes the 30-day turnaround requirements for work permit application consideration and places asylum-seekers into asylum-only proceedings, meaning they cannot seek other forms of relief during the process. In totality, these regulations are an attack on our human right to seek safe haven. Trump has called upon the secretaries of the Homeland Security and Justice departments to implement these restrictive measures within 90 days, if they go legally unchallenged.

“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that every person has a right to asylum, yet the Trump Administration clearly disregards this mandate and the moral responsibilities of the presidency,” said Rita Pin Ahrens, OCA National Executive Director. “In the face of families fleeing persecution, the Administration raises barrier after barrier. There are few things more shameless than the Administration’s creation of a system that is set up to fail vulnerable families.”

OCA demands that the Administration reconsider the proposed regulations and value the international human rights of refugees, asylum seekers, and all individuals. 


OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates is a national civil rights organization dedicated to improving the social, political, and economic well-being of Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs).