Refugees, immigrants, lawful permanent residents (green card holders) and US citizens all deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. In the USA, we all have rights. This information is to help you know your refugee rights. At the bottom of this page, you will find links to this information in Nepali, Somali, French and Arabic.


This information is meant to educate you. It should not be in any way considered legal advice. Our intention is for people to be prepared and not scared.

  • 非美国公民,包括合法绿卡持有者、难民、寻求庇护者,通常拥有与公民相同的权利。
  • 若你认为你的权利已被侵犯,则应该与律师讨论。
  • 若你或你的家人需要紧急协助,立刻拨打911。
  • Non-U.S. citizens, including lawful permanent residents, refugees and asylees, generally have the same rights as citizens.
  • If you believe your rights have been violated, you should talk to a lawyer.
  • If you or your family members are ever in need of emergency assistance, immediately call 911.



我们正在经历一段困难的时期。最近在美国针对难民安置、难民、及移民让许多人害怕及担忧。每个人都有权利,包括难民、庇护寻求者、移民、合法永久居留权(绿卡)持有者 、美国公民、和在美国没有身份的人。

We are living in difficult times. Recent actions against refugee resettlement, refugees and immigrants in the United States have created fear and concerns for many. Everyone has rights, including refugees, asylum seekers, asylees, immigrants, lawful permanent residents (green card holders), U.S. citizens, and individuals in the United States without status.

无论我们来自哪里或如何祈祷,我们所有人都应该被尊重。我们都有权利。这份资源的目的是为了提供亟需的信息给难民们。你必须了解自己的权利,以回应社区所面临的重要问题。这份资源的目的并非令人对执法者害怕。重要的是要了解紧急服务人员(警察,医务人员和消防员)可以在紧急情况下帮助任何人。在紧急事件时,立刻拨打911。了解你的权利 – 难民的权利。

We all deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, regardless of where we are from or how we pray. We all have rights. This resource is meant to provide refugees with urgently needed information. You must know your rights in response to the important issues facing our communities. This resource is not intended to create fear of law enforcement entities. It is important to understand that emergency service personnel (police, medical personnel, and firefighters) are available to help any person in an emergency. Always call 911 in an emergency. Know your rights – refugee rights.


Your rights at home


What if federal agents come to my home to talk to me?


There have been reports of agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and/or the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) visiting refugees’ homes to talk to them.


Here is what you can do if someone tries to enter your home:


Do not open the door


Immigration enforcement or the FBI can’t come into your home without a warrant. If a warrant is presented, check the date and signature. If it is signed by a judge and the date is valid, you must let them in and can exercise your right to remain silent. If a warrant is not presented, they can only come in if you or someone else invites them in.


Do not speak


In the USA, you have the right to be silent and not say anything to the police. Anything you say can and will be used against you in court. You can tell the agents, “I plead the Fifth Amendment” and do not speak.


Call a lawyer


There are free and low-cost lawyers who can help you. You can find a pro bono lawyer on Immigrationlawhelp.org. And you can contact your local ACLU.


Do not sign anything


Don’t sign your name on any papers without talking to a lawyer.


Stay strong


Get a trustworthy lawyer. Also, ask your community to advocate for you. If you are detained, you may be able to get bail and be released. Don’t give up hope.


Remember: you have the right to choose not to answer any questions.


Your right to travel


Can I still travel outside of the USA with refugee status or a green card?


We recommend individuals from six countries – Syria, Iran, Sudan, Somalia, Yemen and Libya – do not travel at this time, unless it is extremely urgent or an emergency.

  • 对于没有美国公民身份的人,在美国之外旅行有高度的风险。
  • 如果你或你的亲人在美国境外并计划回国,你应该在启程前联络在美国的律师。旅行的人应该确保带着所有的文件,包括护照、绿卡、或难民旅行文件。
  • 没有美国绿卡或公民身份的难民目前不应该以任何理由在美国境外旅行,就算你的本国并非以上所列的六个国家。
  • 在机场与入境口岸的执法者有权对所有行李执行“常规搜索”,并对你问关于你的公民身份和行程的问题。如果你在机场被选中二次面试,你则有权利要求律师。许多律师为此目的免费提供服务。
  • 如果你或你认识的人被拘留,你应该联络:airport@refugeerights.org,打电话给你当地的ACLU并使用这份表格报告你的经验。
  • There is a high risk of traveling outside the USA for individuals who do not have US citizenship.
  • If you or your loved ones are outside the USA and are planning to return, you should contact an attorney here in the USA before embarking on your journey. The person traveling should make sure to have all their documents, including a passport, green card, or refugee travel document.
  • Refugees who do not have a green card or US citizenship should not travel outside of the USA at this time for any reason, even if you are not from the six named countries.
  • Law enforcement officers at the airport and at port of entries have the authority to conduct a “routine search” of all luggage and to ask you questions about your citizenship and travel itinerary. If you are selected for a secondary interview at the airport, you have the right to ask for a lawyer. Many lawyers are making themselves available free of charge for this purpose.
  • If you or someone you know is detained, you can email the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) at airport@refugeerights.org, call your local ACLU, and report your or others’ experience to the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).


Remember: If you do travel, you will need to bring your documents with you.


Your right to be safe in your community


What if I am a victim of harassment in my home or neighborhood?

  • 你的难民身份相当于你在美国拥有合法身份,并且你有权获得与美国公民相同的待遇。
  • 当地警方随时为你服务,并在需要时保护你。如果你是犯罪的受害者,你该马上打电话给警察:911。
  • 如果你觉得你有危险,或者如果有人威胁你或你的家人,不要试着与他们谈论或面对他们。你该马上打911找警察。
  • 如果你对你的安全感到担忧,与你的难民重新安置机构或律师讨论。
  • 如果您认为您或您认识的人因您的宗教、国籍或团体成员资格而成为犯罪的受害者或受到歧视,您还应向南方贫困法律中心 (SPLC) 举报。
  • Your refugee status grants you legal status in the United States, and you have the right to receive the same treatment as US citizens.
  • Your local police are there to serve you as a member of the community and protect you when you need it. If you are the victim of a crime, you should immediately call the police: 911.
  • If you feel that you are in danger, or if someone is making threats against you or your family, do not try to talk to them or confront them. You should immediately call the police by dialing 911.
  • If you are worried about your safety, talk to someone at your refugee resettlement agency or to a lawyer.
  • If you believe you or someone you know has been a victim of a crime or discriminated against because of your religion, nationality, or group membership, you should also report it to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC).


Remember: call 911 if you or someone you know is in danger.



Your right to practice your religion


Can I practice my faith without any fear of being victimized?


You have a constitutional right to practice your religion. You have the right to go to a place of worship, attend and hear sermons and religious lectures, participate in community activities, and pray in public. If you experience religious discrimination or are targeted because of religion, contact the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR).


Remember: the law is on your side to protect you.


Your right to advocate for your community


As a refugee, you are a very important advocate. Your voice can have a great impact because you are a refugee. You have the right to:

  • 打电话给你的城市、州立、或国会的民选官员或与他们会面,建立关系并使他们了解你对社区的贡献,寻求他们对难民安置与其他你在乎的议题的支持。
  • 分享你作为难民的故事,帮助改变关于难民的刻板印象。
  • 加入多元化的声音,如安置人员、信仰领袖、雇主、退伍军人、其他难民领袖、和支持性社区成员,共同采取行动。
  • Call and meet with elected officials in your town, state, and in Congress to develop a relationship, educate them about your contribution to the community, and seek their support for refugee resettlement and issues you care about.
  • Share your story as a refugee to help transform the public narrative about refugees.
  • Join diverse voices such as resettlement staff, faith leaders, employers, military veterans, other refugee leaders, and supportive community members to take action together.


Remember: your voice matters.


Lawful permanent residents who are accused of crimes


If you are not yet a citizen and you are arrested or accused of a crime, make sure your lawyer understands your immigration status because minor offenses can result in deportation for non-US citizens. Pleading guilty as part of a plea bargain can jeopardize your legal status and could eventually lead to removal.


If you have a criminal conviction on your record, it is recommended that you contact a lawyer to understand all your options. If you are able to get a “set aside” or “expunge” your conviction, this could clear your record, but the laws are different in each state, so it is best to consult a lawyer about these questions.


Remember: talk to a lawyer if you are accused of even a minor crime.


Your rights if you are interviewed by a federal agent


Agents from the FBI or DHS may seek to talk with you. You have the right to decline to be interviewed, but this can be viewed with suspicion. Talk to your lawyer or representative from your resettlement agency first about the interview request.


If you agree to an interview, you have the right to have an attorney present. You can find legal services from CLINIC or from AILA.

  • 你有权有一位律师在场。临床可以找到法律服务。 AILA.
  • 你可以选择谈话的时间和地点。
  • 你可以要求提前知道将要问的问题并有翻译人员在场。
  • 不要在谈话时提供虚假的信息。如果你觉得不舒服,不必回答所有的问题。
  • 如果你正在等待家人在美国被安置,这可能会花长一点的时间,但是他们仍然会有同样的机会可以申请安置。
  • You can choose the time and place for the interview.
  • You can request to know what the questions will be at the interview and have an interpreter present.
  • Do not give any false information during your interview. You do not have to answer all the questions you are asked, if you are not comfortable.
  • If you are waiting for your family member to be resettled to the U.S., it may take longer, but they still have the same opportunity to apply for resettlement.


Remember: you MUST NOT give false information during your interview. It will be considered a criminal offense and may result in negative consequences.


Be aware of law enforcement surveillance




Entrapment is a practice whereby a law enforcement officer induces a person to commit a criminal offense that the person may have otherwise been unlikely to commit. Since undercover agents sometimes may monitor Muslim or immigrant communities, it is important to always maintain situational awareness and consciousness, hold true to your values, and not be lured into activities that could be illegal.




You and your families may experience some form of surveillance. The purpose of surveillance is to gather information and the techniques can be categorized into three types: covert, overt, and electronic surveillance:

  • 秘密监控是当一个人无法知道自己的信息正在被他人搜集。可能有人在远处跟踪、搜索在公共场合丢掉的垃圾、以及用麦克风监听谈话。
  • 明显监控是可见的,并且是最常被难民社区举报的一种。这种类型的监视可以通过敲门提问、公开与邻居交谈等来完成。
  • 电子监控主要是监视网路及网页使用,以及使用监听设备。总体而言,监控是地方,州和联邦执法部门使用的法律程序。每个州有不同的法律及法令,所以如果你认为你遭到监控,则应该与律师沟通。。
  • Covert surveillance is when the individual is not able to detect someone gathering information on them. This can be done by following the individual from a distance, searching through garbage receptacles left of public property, and using microphones to listen in on conversations.
  • Overt surveillance is visible and is what is being most frequently reported by refugee communities. This type of surveillance can be accomplished by knocking on doors and asking questions, openly talking to neighbors, etc.
  • Electronic surveillance focuses on monitoring internet, website pages, and using listening devices. Overall, surveillance is a legal process used by local, state, and federal law enforcement. The specific laws and regulations vary from state to state and it is advised to speak with a lawyer if you feel you are under surveillance.


Monitoring of internet activities


Be careful not to visit websites that might hold extremist ideologies or engage in online conversations with others who might hold radical views.


There is often a generation gap between how parents are accustomed to using the internet and how children or youth use social media. Talk to your children and teenagers about what are appropriate internet sites to visit and what you expect them to avoid. Monitor your children and teenagers’ activity online and encourage them not to visit websites or participate in online activity that could be perceived as problematic. Consider setting guidelines ahead of time or even using software that can restrict their use.

这里有更多资源。 你可以用的软件包括Teensafe,让家长追踪他们孩子的手机使用行为。

There are apps you can use to help parents track their children’s cell phone activities. You can also find out how to monitor your child’s internet usage and get more advice from Teensafe.


Remember: it is important to be careful about what websites you visit. Do not visit sites with extremist views because the government could think you are connected to terrorism.


Additional information and resources


There are many organizations that offer helpful information and resources about your rights and ways to keep yourself, your family, and your community safe. Unfortunately, there are also rumors and false information circulating on social media and online communities, as well as scams that seek to take advantage of refugees and other immigrants. Please make sure that you seek information from credible sources, especially when searching for information online.


Do you want to read and download this information in your own language? Please select your language below.


Download this information in other languages

We prepared these materials in partnership with Church World Services (CWS). CWS has posted the information in four other languages:


Thank you to Church World Service for preparing these materials to help refugees KNOW YOUR RIGHTS.

USAHello does not give legal advice, nor are any of our materials intended to be taken as legal advice. If you are looking for a free or low-cost lawyer or legal help, we can help you find free and low-cost legal services.

谢谢 教会世界服务 准备这些材料,以帮助难民了解你的权利。

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