The Center for Victims of Torture Commends Introduction of the Refugee Protection Act of 2019 | Center for Victims of Torture

The Center for Victims of Torture Commends Introduction of the Refugee Protection Act of 2019

Thursday, November 21, 2019

ST. PAUL, Minn. & WASHINGTON —The Center for Victims of Torture today praised the introduction of the Refugee Protection Act of 2019, legislation that would ensure the United States affords refugees and asylum seekers protections that they need and deserve. Championed by Senator Leahy (D-VT) and Representative Lofgren (CA-19), the bill is a smart, compassionate and essential counterweight to the Trump administration’s ongoing efforts to prevent people fleeing persecution from finding safety in the United States.

“A shocking percentage of refugees and asylum seekers are torture survivors. Those who make it to the United States have typically endured a perilous journey. They should be welcomed, but it’s become just the opposite; they face an increasingly thick web of policies and practices designed to strip them of their rights, their dignity and their hope. The Refugee Protection Act would put an end to this cruel madness and help restore the United States’ humanitarian leadership. Every Member of Congress should support the bill,” said Scott Roehm, director of CVT’s Washington, D.C., office.   

The Refugee Protection Act (RPA) of 2019 is a comprehensive blueprint for restoring and reinvigorating the United States’ refugee and asylum systems. In particular, the RPA bolsters the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program and expands protections for refugees; restores due process and dignity for asylum seekers; and expands protections for immigrants cooperating with law enforcement and foreign nationals assisting U.S. troops. More information about the bill can be found in this one pager, this summary and this section-by-section analysis.


The Center for Victims of Torture is a nonprofit organization headquartered in St. Paul, MN, with offices in Atlanta, GA, and Washington, D.C.; and healing initiatives in Africa and the Middle East. Visit

Jenni Bowring-McDonough
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