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Refugee Protection Act Would Help Women Throughout the World Facing Abuse

Women throughout the world face persecution simply because they are women. From forced marriage to honor killings and gruesome female genital mutilation, millions of women are often helpless to protect themselves or relatives from abuse and violence.

The United States, however, may offer these women the protection that they need.

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) recently introduced legislation - the Refugee Protection Act of 2010 - to remedy aspects of the existing asylum laws "that place unnecessary and harmful barriers" before those seeking asylum in the United States.

The Refugee Protection Act would abolish the one-year waiting period for applying for a green card imposed on refugees or those seeking asylum in the United States. The Secretary of State would also be authorized to name vulnerable groups that would be able to receive "expedited adjudication as refugees."

Layli Miller-Muno, founder and executive director of the Tahirih Justice Center, stated: "[The Protection Act] would clarify that a wider range of types of violence against women are a viable basis for protection. It would help in the complicated legal analysis that we have to do right now in order to prove that protection."

The Refugee Protection Act would aid attorneys and other groups help women facing gender-based abuse and violence seek asylum in the United States. More importantly, however, the Refugee Protection Act would allow the millions of women who suffer abuse and violence an easier path to protection and safety within the United States.

If you or a loved one is seeking asylum or in need of immigration help, speak with an experienced immigration attorney today.

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