HUMAN RIGHT CLINIC: Access to Support and Services for Survivors of Torture (ASSIST)

Torture survivors seeking asylum face a host of challenges even after they’ve found their way to safety in the United States. Because survivors are often forced to flee their homes suddenly and without preparation, many arrive in the U.S. with little more than the contents of a backpack and their tremendous will to survive. They face acute financial, medical, psychological, social and logistical challenges – including painful physical and psychological consequences from the abuse they have suffered – yet there are few resources specifically targeted to this vulnerable population.


Through the Access to Support and Services for Survivors of Torture (ASSIST) program, HRC connects clients who have received a clinical evaluation to needed medical, mental health, and social services. ASSIST serves as a bridge between clients, legal representatives, HRC volunteer clinicians, and community resources to enable clients to overcome the lasting effects of torture and the daily challenges of resettlement so they can begin healthy, hopeful new lives in the United States.


Community Resource Guides

Through ASSIST, HRC clients are informed of resources in their communities that provide appropriate medical, mental health, and social services, including torture treatment centers, pro bono or low cost medical care, mental health services, employment, food, clothing, housing, and ESL and adult education opportunities. Clients can access these resources whenever they wish, now or in the future.


HRC clients in need of assistance accessing resources in their communities should contact the ASSIST program at at 212-584-4831 or


Individual Consultations

HRC volunteer clinicians invite clients to participate in the ASSIST program. Clients can meet with HRC staff in person or over the phone to discuss the types of services they require. HRC staff and clients work together to identify useful resources and address potential barriers to ensure that clients are receiving the services they need.


ASSIST Network

The project has also developed a growing network of torture treatment centers, hospitals, community-based organizations and private practitioners who are able and willing to serve torture survivors.


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