In 1991, the Chinese government forced Mei Fen Wong to get an intrauterine device (IUD) implanted in her uterus as a state-mandated form of population control. Wong found the device "unbearably" painful and, in accordance with what would seem like her individual rights, had it removed by a private doctor. But soon after, in a mandatory state-ordered pelvic exam, the government doctor found that Mei Fen Wong's IUD was missing.
Mei Fen Wong was detained for three days until she gave up her personal rights and allowed the reinsertion of an IUD. Traumatized and scared for her health, she fled to the United States and applied for asylum in 2000. Her claim was rejected by an immigration judge and then again, in 2008, by the Board of Immigration Appeals. But now, with wisdom somehow lacking in the BIA, the 2nd Court of appeals has found this case compelling enough to have another look.
Because the IUD is not permanent, the original rulings found that mandatory IUD insertion does not qualify as grounds for persecution under U.S. asylum law. The question that the 2nd Circuit is now reviewing is whether imprisonment for refusing the IUD elevates the government control of Mei Fen Wong's body to the level of persecution. I'd say so--and here's your opportunity to tell DHS that you agree.
Sign this petition to urge Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to grant asylum to Mei Fen Wong and to recognize forced contraception or sterilization as ground for asylum.
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