FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 24, 2014
National Leader in LGBT Asylum Calls for Repeal of Law Criminalizing LGBT Community
New York, NY – Immigration Equality, the national leader in direct representation and advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and HIV-positive individuals is appalled by the Gambian president’s decision to sign into law a bill imposing life in prison for LGBT people.
“We are outraged and deeply concerned by the rise in the criminalization of the LGBT community around the world,” said Caroline Dessert, Executive Director of Immigration Equality. “The new legislation in Gambia shows just how vulnerable our community is internationally. Now more than ever, we need immigration laws in our own country that protect our uniquely vulnerable community. Immigration Equality calls on President Obama to ensure that LGBT people are included in his recent executive order on immigration. We also call on Congress to pass humane immigration reform that lifts arbitrary barriers preventing vulnerable communities from finding permanent protection in the United States. As more and more countries promote state-sanctioned persecution of LGBT individuals, we are reminded why it is crucial for our own government to not only condemn states that criminalize LGBT individuals, but to step up and provide safe haven. We will do everything in our power to ensure that immigration laws protect the LGBT community from deportation to places where it is fundamentally unsafe.”
Since 1994, Immigration Equality has been representing LGBT and HIV-positive asylum seekers, detainees, and binational couples, who are fighting for safety, fair treatment, and freedom. Immigration Equality represents people from around the world fleeing violence, abuse and persecution because of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and HIV status. Our team of legal experts has won asylum for more than 600 LGBT and HIV-positive individuals.