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Evidence suggests that Central American women’s motivations to migrate and experiences during migration are often tied to violence, and yet their experiences after arriving in the U.S. do not always support their rights, recovery, safety, or healing. In fact, Central American women and children apprehended and detained in detention centers in the United States are often fleeing from domestic violence, sexual violence, and the highest rates of femicide in the world. Many women present themselves at the U.S.-Mexico border, seeking safety for themselves and their children, yet may be detained and possibly separated from their children. Those who travel alone or who have been separated from their children may remain detained for months, or in some cases indefinitely, as they pursue their asylum claims. While any period of time in detention is considered harmful, the longer women are in detention, the greater the risk of re-traumatization for them and their children.

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