Strengthening Protection

Strengthening Protection
Rutas del tren y albergues

We are currently conducting two applied research projects to improve refugee protection from sexual and gender-based violence: disclosure of sexual and gender-based violence in forced displacement and intimate partner violence and asylum in the Americas.

Disclosure of sexual and gender-based violence in forced displacement

Refugees and other forcibly displaced people contexts suffer many forms of SGBV; they also face diverse barriers to disclosing their experiences of harm, which can prevent them from accessing care and protection

In 2018, we conducted exploratory research for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to help local service providers detect and respond to cases of rape, trafficking, and other sexual exploitation suffered by so many people who are forcibly displaced in Central America.

We are now developing practice tools to enable safe SGBV disclosure in this dangerous context. This should, in turn, increase survivors’ access to health and legal services. We hope to later develop an adaptable toolkit for SGBV service providers in humanitarian settings across the globe.

Partner violence and asylum in the Americas

Intimate partner violence can be a basis for asylum in many jurisdictions. At the request of UNHCR, we are studying the vast diversity of approaches to this gender-based claim for refugee protection across the Americas region. Our comparative report will assist UNHCR and local partners in advocating for improved training and acknowledgment of intimate partner violence by national asylum adjudicators.

Past Projects

Safe Haven CoverSafe Haven Study

This is a multi-country study described and assessed options for physical protection from SGBV in diverse forced displacement settings. The countries covered were ColombiaThailandHaiti, and Kenya.