United States of America Multi-Country Office
The UNHCR’s Regional Office in Washington covers operations in the United States, 15 Caribbean states and 9 overseas territories including Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize (until 2017), Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago; the British overseas territories of Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Montserrat and Turks and Caicos Islands; and the Dutch overseas territories of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: Aruba, Curacao and Sint Maarten.
Operation: United States of America Multi-Country Office
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|2020 planning figures|
|10,560||people of concern in the Caribbean will benefit from legal assistance, including counselling on access to protection|
|6,000||refugee households in the Caribbean will receive cash grants|
|10||education, health, SGBV/child protection projects will be implemented, benefitting host and displaced communities|
|2017 year-end figures|
|3,200||kilometer border mission, including situational assessment of 8 out of 9 Customs and Border Protection Sectors, on the southern border were carried out|
|2,780||people, originating from 143 countries, were provided with food, shelter, education and health assistance|
|802||group A individuals and 445 registered descendants received support to request validation of their Dominican documents in the Dominican Republic|
|100%||compliance rate with 118 offices reporting monthly on resettlement activities on the online reporting portal that UNHCR helped to develop|
People of Concern
United States of America Multi-Country Office
Working environmentRefugees and migrants continue to leave Venezuela and arrive in the Caribbean with increasing protection and emergency assistance needs. Venezuelans are seeking international protection, fleeing repression and/or looking for ways to re-establish their lives abroad, as the economic and political crisis deepens, and shortages of essential goods and services continue inside Venezuela. The increased number of Venezuelans arriving in the Caribbean requires capacity-building and emergency preparedness support to host governments, and ongoing protection and assistance delivery to people of concern - directly or through partners. With the expectation that by the end of 2020 some 157,000 Venezuelans with possible international protection needs will be staying in the Caribbean, UNHCR will further strengthen its operations in particular in the Southern part of the region.
Under the joint inter-agency coordination platform and through coordination with governments and communities affected, UNHCR will consolidate its capacity-building and targeted protection interventions, which, together with the Caribbean Migration Consultations regional policy forum should help maintain the protection space in the region.
With regards to the United States of America, additional executive orders, regulations, and policies limiting access to territory and to the asylum system were issued in 2018 and 2019. In 2020, increasing arrivals of asylum-seekers from the NCA and Venezuela are anticipated to continue, placing pressure on the Government’s and NGOs’ reception capacity. Despite a difficult protection environment, UNHCR expects to maintain positive relationships with key government counterparts, finding spaces of collaboration especially around building of regional asylum capacity. With regards to the situation at the border between the United states of America and Mexico, new opportunities for meaningful UNHCR cross-border engagement will continue to grow as UNHCR expands its operations and protection presence in Mexico.
Key prioritiesIn line with the objectives of the RMRP, UNHCR will continue to support States in the southern Caribbean to ensure that Venezuelans and other populations of concern have access to asylum and/or alternative legal pathways without fear of being deported. UNHCR will also strengthen access to services and to socio-economic rights and increase its focus on the prevention and response to SGBV and human trafficking.
In the rest of the Caribbean, UNHCR will continue to promote protection-sensitive management of mixed movements and assist States to progressively develop asylum laws, policies and systems. The progressive eradication of statelessness in the Caribbean, including through the pursuit of nationality solutions in the Dominican Republic will also be a key strategic priority. Throughout the Caribbean, resettlement and relocation options as part of comprehensive durable solutions will grow, both as a protection tool for most vulnerable refugees and as a strategic one to improve refugee policies at the national levels.
In the United States of America, UNHCR will prioritize activities to strengthen access to asylum, preserve protection safeguards and advance the integration of refugees. UNHCR also intends to back US engagement in the NCA regional response, including support for regional asylum capacity building and the PTA. UNHCR will continue to support the implementation of the US refugee admissions programme and explore avenues for expanding co-sponsorship models, while supporting the National Action Plan to end statelessness by 2024.