Emily Holland

Moving the Virtual Border to the Cellular Level: Mandatory DNA Testing and the U.S. Refugee Family Reunification Program

Should the United States impose a genetic definition of “family “on refugees seeking to reunite with their families? This Comment chronicles the birth of DNA testing in the U.S. Refugee Family Reunification (Priority Three, or P-3) Program. It explores the inception of new rules that will require DNA testing for individuals processed as Priority Three refugees. Drawing on historical uses of non-DNA forensic testing in the U.S. immigration system and other areas of U.S. law, the Comment analyzes whether DNA testing will work in this context. It asks whether it is appropriate or even feasible to test family connections using DNA testing, a process which necessarily implies that family members must be biologically related to the refugee-applicant.