About | HeinOnline Law Journal Library | HeinOnline Law Journal Library | HeinOnline

69 Hastings L.J. 985 (2017-2018)
Neither Here nor There: The Bisexual Struggle for American Asylum

handle is hein.journals/hastlj69 and id is 986 raw text is: 


                   Neither Here nor There:

   The Bisexual Struggle for American Asylum

                               JACLYN   GROSS*

Recently, it has become increasingly difficultfor foreign nationals to successfully gain
refuge in the United States from persecution in their home countries. The year 1990
marked  the first time that the United States granted asylum to a homosexual claimant
on the grounds  of membership  in a particular social group. Since then, several
LGBTI  asylum  seekers have been granted the right to build new lives in the United
States. Most  recently, the country  has increasingly included  the transgender
community   in this group  of fortunate individuals. Bisexuals, however, despite
comprising  over fifty percent of the LGBTI population, continue to be a significant
subset of the community that cons istently faces the most difficulty in attaining asylum
in the United States. Asylum seekers who are discriminated against based on visible
traits face far fewer roadblocks than those attempting to prove persecution for not
being heterosexual.

There are fundamental societal misunderstandings about bisexuality and its presence
in everyday life, and the judiciary suffers from a lack of targeted training that could
help overcome  this deficiency. Accordingly, the judiciary must take steps to prevent
these  deficiencies from  resulting in  stereotypes  and  inaccurate  credibility
determinations that may ultimately act as a bar to asylum. This Note proposes that
all judges making   asylum   determinations be  subject to a  training program
comparable   to that of  the LGBTI-specific module   required by  United  States
Citizenship and  Immigration   Services for Refugee, Asylum   and  International
Operations officials. With this training, the personal biases of decisionmakers that
lead  to skepticism of a  claimant's credibility can be reduced,  thus avoiding
miscategorizations of individuals who strayfrom perceived gender or sexual binaries.

     * J.D. Candidate 2018, University of California, Hastings College of the Law; BA 2007, University of
California, Santa Cruz. I want to thank Heron Greenesmith for alerting me to the intricacies of this issue and
for her indispensable feedback. I also want to express my gratitude to Professor Dorit Reiss and Karen
Musalo for their time and guidance. This Note is dedicated to all the family and friends who have loved and
supported me unconditionally throughout my journey in law school.


What Is HeinOnline?

HeinOnline is a subscription-based resource containing thousands of academic and legal journals from inception; complete coverage of government documents such as U.S. Statutes at Large, U.S. Code, Federal Register, Code of Federal Regulations, U.S. Reports, and much more. Documents are image-based, fully searchable PDFs with the authority of print combined with the accessibility of a user-friendly and powerful database. For more information, request a quote or trial for your organization below.

Short-term subscription options include 24 hours, 48 hours, or 1 week to HeinOnline.

Contact us for annual subscription options:

Already a HeinOnline Subscriber?

profiles profiles most