Over the past twenty-five years, international bodies and states have increasingly acknowledged and responded to the unique protection needs of child asylum seekers. Guidelines developed by UNHCR, the United States, Canada, and other countries place children's asylum claims in the context of children's rights under international human rights instruments and norms, and encourage a child-sensitive approach to procedural and substantive issues in children's claims. The guidelines are based on the critical understanding that children seeking asylum are not similarly situated to adults seeking asylum because of their age, development, maturity, understanding, vulnerability, and more limited ability to communicate. Consequently, the guidelines stipulate that asylum procedures and substantive evaluation of children’s claims must be tailored to their needs and experiences.
- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Servs., Asylum Officer Basic Training Course, Guidelines for Children’s Asylum Claims 37 (Sept. 1, 2009)
- U.S. Dep’t of Justice, Guidelines for Children’s Asylum Claims, 1998 WL 34032561 (1998)
UN High Commissioner for Refugees
- U.N. High Comm’r for Refugees, Guidelines on International Protection No. 8: Child Asylum Claims under Articles 1(A)2 and 1(F) of the 1951 Convention and/or 1967 Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees, U.N. Doc. HCR/GIP/09/08 (Dec. 22, 2009)
Center for Gender & Refugee Studies, Review of Gender, Child, and LGBTI Asylum Guidelines and Case Law in Foreign Jurisdiction: A resource for U.S. Attorneys, (May, 2014).