Groundbreaking Gender Claim Filed
Mariela Cabrera Ponce suffered years of physical and psychological violence at the hands of her ex-husband. As in numerous other cases, the Colombian government failed to protect her, leaving her little choice but to flee.
Once in Ecuador, she applied for asylum but was denied protection, in a decision fraught with gender bias and legal error.
Asylum Access Ecuador and Loyola Law School this week petitioned a United Nations human rights body to protect women like Mariela by recognizing domestic violence as grounds for refugee status.
In bringing Marielaâ€™s case before the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), Asylum Access Ecuador and Loyola Law School contend that Ecuador has failed to uphold its obligations under the CEDAW Convention to protect against and eradicate gender discrimination and gender bias in the context of asylum proceedings.
Additionally, Ecuador is urged to establish gender-sensitive procedures and training on gender-based violence and gender-based persecution, which, in many cases, would provide valid grounds to claim refugee status.
Regional Director, Asylum Access Latin America
Global Policy Director, Asylum Access
Executive Director, Asylum Access