Our Work

The Center for Gender & Refugee Studies protects the fundamental human rights of women, children, LGBT individuals, and other refugees who flee persecution. We provide cutting edge legal expertise and training, policy development, research, and in-country fact-finding and use international human rights instruments to address the root causes of persecution. 

Technical Assistance & Training

Our attorneys offer in-person workshops, and webinars for attorneys, government officials, human rights advocates, social service providers, and student on asylum law in general as well as a range of specifc issues that arise in gender-based asylum claims. For individual cases, CGRS provides strategic advice, practice advisories, expert declarations, country conditions reports, briefs and decisions, and referrals to potential experts.

Tracking & Decision Analysis

CGRS tracks and monitors the outcome of gender asylum cases nationwide at all levels of immigration adjudication in order to assist attorneys in individual cases as well as to identify decision-making trends that inform our advocacy efforts, maintaining an asylum database housing unpublished briefs and decisions available nowhere else. 

Impact Litigation

We undertake strategic advocacy on behalf of refugees before the immigration courts, the Board of Immigration Appeals, and Federal Courts of Appeal in the United States as well as in foreign courts and international tribunals.

Policy Advocacy

We work to create a refugee regime that aligns with international human rights norms and protects those who are most vulnerable by educating lawmakers, legal and refugee communities, and the general public about policy proposals that affect refugees and asylum seekers.

Child Migrants

CGRS is working on several coordinated fronts to address the needs of unaccompanied immigrant and refugee children arriving at our border. Combining a child-sensitive approach and advocacy for positive outcomes in individual cases with national advocacy to protect the rights and needs of unaccompanied children, CGRS is tackling why children flee their homes, the injustices they face during their journeys and upon deportation to their home countries, and the reforms urgently needed in the U.S. immigration system to ensure protections for these vulnerable children.

International Refugee & Human Rights Work

CGRS and the UC Hastings Refugee & Human Rights Clinic collaborate to send fact-finding delegations to countries around the world, gathering documentation of human rights abuses, analyzing the root cause of abuses, and developing partnerships with grassroots organizations and human rights advocates. 

Legal-Medical Partnerships

Medical and mental health professionals provide crucial documentation for asylum seekers who have survived torture and trauma. CGRS was the first asylum organization to collaborate with psychologists in representing asylum seekers.