Proving a Well-Founded Fear: The Evidentiary Burden in Refugee Claims Based on Sexual Orientation
Sydney Levy, ed., Asylum Based on Sexual Orientation: A Resource Guide, San Francisco, IGLHRC, 1996
12 Pages Posted: 17 Jul 2013 Last revised: 15 Jun 2021
Date Written: 1996
The paper examines the nature and consequences of the evidentiary problems facing women and men who make refugee claims based on sexual orientation persecution. It begins by briefly surveying the nature of a refugee hearing and the role of documentary evidence in the refugee determination process. It then proceeds to illustrate some of the problems encountered by lesbians and gay men by focusing on one aspect of the legal rest which must be met by a claimant, and that is the requirement that a person have a 'well-founded fear of persecution'. It will be seen that documentation on human rights violations against sexual minorities is often very difficult to find. If information exists, refugee panels of the Convention Refugee Determination Board (CRDD) of the IRB have sometimes questioned the bias of the sources.
Keywords: LGBT refugees, sexual orientation, refugee law, sexual minorities
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