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MHRO’s mission emphasizes family unity with the philosophy that united immigrant families create vibrant and healthy communities. The challenge continues to be faced as the Family Reunification Initiative unites Montagnard families and other refugee populations through policy advocacy, refugee protection, and immigration services that promote and facilitate legal permanent residence, family unity, U.S. citizenship and community integration. Several trips were made to Washington D.C. by MHRO to advocate with Members of Congress, the White House National Security Council and the State Dept.

The situation was urgent as options were being considered and the Vietnamese Government accelerated its pressure on both Cambodia and the U.S. to return the Montagnards to Vietnam where they would face punishment and retribution.

As individual refugees have their I-730 petitions and I-130s successfully processed, families are united.

Montagnard Human Rights Organization (MHRO). Family of U.S. Citizens This page describes how you (a U.S. citizen) may petition for certain family members to receive either a Green Card, a fiancé (e) visa or a K-3/K-4 visa based on your relationship. MEASURABLE RESULTS. The Directive on the right to family reunificationestablishes common rules for exercising the right to family reunification in 25 EU Member States (excluding Ireland and Denmark). The MHRO Family Unification Initiative cooperates closely with  other NC refugee agencies, the State Refugee Office, the U.S. Embassy/Consulate, and with USCIS/DHS Service Centers in maximizing advocacy, information, and action on behalf of successful family reunifications through the I-730 process, and also, family-based immigration process. All materials must not be reproduced in any form. MHRO, in response to the crisis in NC, sought and received 3-year funding from the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) to provide services to the Montagnard community, including family reunification services.

MHRO has broadened its scope of immigrant integration to serve all refugee populations in NC through its advocacy and immigration services.

This policy adjustment impacted not only MHRO, but all the NC resettlement agencies.

Refugees also establish permanent residence and access to citizenship through MHRO immigration services. Defending Human Rights in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, MHRO’S FAMILY REUNIFICATION AND IMMIGRATION SERVICES.

In fact, family reunification is the most common avenue by which people immigrate to the US, accounting for about 2/3 of permanent immigration to the country every year. The advocacy has resulted in training for U.S. Consulate staff, UNHCR, and USCIS/DHS District staff about the problems with language and translation issues facing Montagnards seeking refugee status and also human rights violations that impact access to free emigration. 48 individuals have applied for citizenship and 38 received citizenship.

The Alien Contract Labor Law of 1885, which restricted the ability of most immigrants to enter the United States for the purpose of employment, specifically exempted family members from its exclusions. To be eligible to apply for an IV, a foreign citizen must be sponsored by an immediate relative who is at least 21 years of age and is either a U.S. citizen or U.S. Lawful Permanent Resident (that is, a green-card holder). The MHRO Initiative has not only created quantifiable results, but it has given hope to those remaining in Vietnam, for those still stuck in the lengthy immigration process, and for those refugees who can experience a Refugee Self-Help Organization that has empowered itself and other refugees. In 2001-2004, several hundred Montagnard refugees fled from Vietnam seeking asylum in Cambodia after a brutal crackdown by the Government of Vietnam following peaceful protests by several thousand Montagnards who were demonstrating for religious freedom and land rights. ards in Cambodia be allowed to resettle in the U.S. under the Lautenberg criteria.The pressure intensified from Vietnam with Vietnamese police and buses dispatched from Daklak and Gialai Provinces to the UNHCR sites to urge the Montagnard asylum seekers to return the Montagnards to Vietnam.

MHRO’S FAMILY REUNIFICATION AND IMMIGRATION SERVICES .

for policies that impact Montagnard emigration and refugee adjudications in Vietnam, the U.S. Service Centers and at UNHCR in Cambodia. Family reunification is the largest of four major avenues through which individuals qualify for admission and "lawful permanent residence" in the U.S.. MHRO accomplished this by impacting the U.S. policy that allowed over 800 Montagnards to be resettled in the U.S. and by continuing its Congressional advocacy and State Dept. Other refugees would follow and seek sanctuary in Cambodia, but their resettlement options in the past three years have begun to diminish because of U.S. refugee policy that has changed regarding Montagnards. Permanency Matters: Reunification (PDF - … As refugees become permanent residents and U.S. citizens, the entire Family Reunification Initiative exponentially extends its value.

The first federal attempts to limit immigration came in the late 19th century, with a series of laws that targeted Asian immigrants—such as the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882—and restricted laborers.

MHRO’s aim was to rescue Montagnard refugees, to seek funding which would allow MHRO to handle immigration petitions, to impact U.S. government policies with advocacy which would provide refugee protection and to promote free emigration in Vietnam, to seek BIA accreditation in order to maximize effective immigration services and to promote refugee integration to a broad population of refugees, not only Montagnards from Vietnam. MHRO recognized the critical need that unless families are united, there cannot be successful integration. Local provincial officials either withhold the necessary documentation or force Montagnards to pay excessive bribes to obtain the needed documents. (If your relative wishes to naturalize or obtain proof of citizenship, see the Citizenship section of our website.) Family Based Immigration A foreign citizen seeking to live permanently in the United States requires an immigrant visa (IV). The Directive applies equally to family relationships established before and after the sponso… Your status determines which relatives (or future relatives) may be eligible to receive immigration benefits. © 2010 Montagnard Human Rights Organization (MHRO). efforts to promote policies in Cambodia and Vietnam that protect Montagnard asylum seekers. MHRO, as an ethnic service provider, had Montagnard staff who could translate immigration documents and who, as former refugees themselves, acutely understood the situation in Vietnam. Mexico accounts for 28% of all immigrants to the US (more than any other country) and upwards of 90% are for family reunification. Refugee Bureau and East Asia Pacific Bureau analyzed the prospects for the refugees’ possible repatriation or resettlement to the U.S. A NC-based advocacy team, including staff from the Montagnard Human Rights Organization, sought and received U.S. Congressional backing and support.

After funding from ORR, from Oct. 2003 to Jan. 2009, MHRO has successfully processed 202 I-730 petitions, 455 I-485, 13 I-90, 48 N 400, 28 I-130 and 6 I-129 F applications.

Often Montagnard women and children are harassed and psychologically or physically tortured because their family members escaped to the U.S.  Congressional testimonies document such abuse. In order to help a family member immigrate, you must be a: U.S. citizen; Green Card holder (permanent resident)

Each individual represents a successful outcome that is manifested in community integration through employment, civic participation, home ownership, and children in school or college. (PRM) about the problems Montagnards experience in Vietnam and awareness with the U.S. Congress, UNHCR, and USCIS/DHS.

MHRO applied to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) for agency recognition and staff accreditation, and we received this status in September, 2008. MHRO has a unique capacity as an ethnic self-help organization to understand the needs of refugees, respond to those needs and to act as an empowering agent. Since this time, hundreds of family members have emigrated to the U.S. where they have created a successful community in NC, Texas, and smaller communities in the countries of Canada and Finland. This advocacy resulted in a greater awareness by USCIS to take into humanitarian consideration the reasons why many Montagnard petitioners missed the two year filing deadline for I-730 petitions and also why many Montagnard beneficiaries have extreme difficulty in Vietnam obtaining documents. Given other efforts in the community to address Montagnard immigration integration, MHRO is unique in its successful outcomes, its advocacy role on behalf of all refugees, and its vision of empowerment.

As a consequence, MHRO also was intentional in its participation in national immigration trainings. MHRO, in its early years, operated exclusively as a volunteer effort.

MHRO received a subsequent 3 year grant in 2008 to continue services and to expand its mission.

Significance. Likewise, the Immigration Act of 1917, w… MHRO now reaches out and serves all refugee populations including individuals from Burma, Iraq, Columbia, Iran, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Burundi and Congo. to urge that the over 900 Montagn.

MHRO serves over 600 refugees with immigration applications in 2010!

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