6-5-2013By Marc Jayson Climaco
New Media Content Specialist
As victims of violence and persecution, refugees come to the United States to seek safety. But all too often they arrive traumatized, unaware of the complexities of the U.S. legal system including the asylum process, and without capacity to afford legal counsel.
Since 1978, Human Rights First has been matching asylum seekers with pro bono attorneys through our Asylum Legal Representation Program, giving refugees a chance to live their lives free from fear. Human Rights First has helped thousands of refugees gain asylum in the United States. These refugees include torture survivors, victims of religious, political and ethnic persecution, and men and women who are fleeing from bias-motivated violence based on gender or sexual orientation.
Today, we debut a new program in the FirstCast podcast series—Refugee Voices. We want to share with you CJ’s story. CJ is gay and has been a victim of antigay violence in Peru, his home country. He came to the United States to seek safety and create a life freefrom persecution, but he had to face a barrier to asylum: the one-year asylum filing deadline.