Statelessness in the United States: A Study to Estimate and Profile the US Stateless Population
In October 2017, the Center for Migration Studies of New York (CMS) initiated a study to map the stateless population in the United States (US).
The report finds that the population in the United States that is potentially stateless or potentially at risk of statelessness is larger and more diverse than previously assumed, albeit with the caveat that severe data limitations make it impossible to provide precise estimates of this population. Stateless determinations require individual screening, which the study could not undertake. Individuals deemed potentially stateless or potentially at risk of statelessness in this report may in fact have been able to secure nationality in their home countries or in third countries. They may also be on a path to citizenship in the United States, although nobody in CMS’s estimates had yet to obtain US citizenship.
The report recommends ways to improve data collection and, thus, to develop better estimates in the future. It also lifts up the voices and challenges of stateless persons, and outlines steps to reduce statelessness and to safeguard the rights of stateless persons in the United States. As it stands, the paucity of reliable federal data on the stateless, the lack of a designated path to legal status for them under US law, and the indifference of government agencies contribute to the vulnerability and isolation of these populations.
Kerwin, D., Alulema, D., Nicholson, M., & Warren, R. (2020, January 23). Statelessness in the United States: A study to estimate and profile the US stateless population. Retrieved from the Center for Migration Studies website: https://cmsny.org/publications/stateless-in-the-united-states/