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Debunking “Extreme Vetting”: Recommendations to Build Back the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (June 2021)

This report outlines the harm caused by “extreme vetting” and makes key recommendations for reforming the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program. The data the report is based on stems from documentation IRAP and others obtained in discovery in litigation challenging anti-refugee policies and procedures.

Originally released October 2020, updated in June 2021 to reflect lifting of confidentiality designations from certain discovery materials.

Download the Report

Appendix D: List of Exhibits

  1. Complaint, ECF No. 1, JFS v. Trump, No.C17-1707JLR (W.D. Wash.)
  2. First Amended Complaint, ECF No. 405, Doe v. Wolf, No. 5:18-cv-02349-BLF (N.D. Cal.)
  3. Compiled Summary of Conclusions, Security Advisory Opinion Requirements Review Board: 
    • Nov. 10, 2015 (Doe v. Wolf, DEF-13914)
    • Dec. 23, 2015 (Doe v. Wolf, DEF-6575)
  4. Emails re FTTTF (July 30, 2018) (Doe v. Wolf, DEF-143)
  5. Emails re Meeting with FBI (Apr. 10, 2018) (Doe v. Wolf, DEF-5618)
  6. Iranians in Vienna NCL Rates (Doe v. Wolf, DEF-18023)
  7. USCIS, Fraud Detection and National Security Directorate, Social Media Division, Administrative Standard Operating Procedures: Follow-to-Join Refugee (USCIS Response to IRAP FOIA Request COW2018000678) 
  8. Compiled RAD CARRP SOP (USCIS, Refugee Affairs Division, National Security Concerns SOP): 
    • March 2018 (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_USCIS_603)
    • Nov. 2019 (IRAP v. DHS FOIA, USCIS1104)
  9. RAIO Directorate – Officer Training: Discretion, Supplement A: Refugee Affairs Division (Rev. Mar. 2, 2018) (AILA document, posted 12/6/2019)
  10. Declaration of Former National Security Officials, ECF No. 46, JFS v. Trump, No.C17-1707JLR (W.D. Wash.)
  11. Declaration of Casey Smith, ECF No. 44, JFS v. Trump, No.C17-1707JLR (W.D. Wash.)
  12. U.S. Department of State, Program Announcement 2018-04 (Oct. 23, 2017) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_State_170)
  13. Declaration of Hilary E. Ingraham, ECF 169-3, Doe v. Trump, No. 2:17-178JLR (W.D. Wash.)
  14. U.S. Department of State, Program Announcement 2018-05 (Oct. 24, 2017) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_State_173)
  15. Interim Guidance for Decisions on Applications for Refugee Status (Nov. 9, 2017) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS-USCIS_3)
  16. Transcript of 30(b)(6) Deposition of Hilary Ingraham (JFS v. Trump, Feb. 20, 2019)
  17. Transcript of Deposition of Kelly Gauger (JFS v. Trump, Feb. 13, 2019)
  18. Transcript of 30(b)(6) Deposition of Jennifer Higgins (JFS v. Trump, Feb. 21, 2019)
  19. Email re Message #1 of FY 2018 Update on USRAP Operations (Oct. 24, 2017) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_State_70)
  20. Memorandum from Kirstjen M. Nielsen re 90-Day Refugee Review (Jan. 29, 2018) (JFS v. Trump)
  21. Memorandum from Jennifer B. Higgins re New Procedures and Revised Guidelines for Refugee Adjudications as a Result of the 90-Day Review (Jan. 29, 2018) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_USCIS_9)
  22. USCIS, Updated Guidance for Refugee Adjudications Resulting from the 90-Day Review (Apr. 12, 2018) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_USCIS_373)
  23. Email re Message #6 of FY 2018 Update on USRAP Operations (Feb. 2, 2018) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_State_166)
  24. E-mails re Visit to FTTTF, Monday, August 20 (Doe v. Wolf, DEF-18030)
  25. Report to Congress, FY19 Q4 (Sen. Van Hollen)
  26. Report to Congress, FY20 Q1 (Sen. Van Hollen)
  27. Report to Congress, FY 20 Q2 (Sen. Van Hollen)
  28. Report to Congress, FY20 Q3 (Sen. Van Hollen)
  29. Report to Congress, FY19 (Sen. Van Hollen)
  30. Declaration of Joanna Ruppel, ECF No. 169-5, Doe v. Trump, No. 2:17-178JLR (W.D. Wash.)
  31. Memorandum re Pipeline DHS Review (PDR) Guidance (Apr. 2, 2018) (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_USCIS_111)
  32. U.S. Department of State, RSC SOP 3: Security (rev. July 19, 2019) (IRAP v. DHS FOIA, C06844632)
  33. U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Refugee Division Officer Training Course: Security Checks: CLASS, SAO, IAC and Fingerprints (rev. Apr. 2018) (Doe v. Wolf,DEF-00020543)
  34. U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration, USRAP Overseas Processing Manual (Oct. 20, 2015) (Doe v. Wolf, DEF-00016914)
  35. Memorandum re Implementation of Enhanced Vetting Guidance for I-730 Refugee Cases Abroad, Jan. 31, 2018 (USCIS Response to IRAP FOIA Request COW2018000678)
  36. Pipeline DHS Review (JFS v. Trump, Doe-JFS_USCIS_369)
  37. Summary of Conclusions, Sub-Policy Coordinating Committee, Lautenberg Refugee Program, Apr. 16, 2018 (Doe v.  Wolf, DEF-10250)