World Conference on Statelessness in the Hague

In June 2019, allies of United Stateless attended the World Conference on Statelessness in the Hague, organized by the Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion and the CANCELLED Arts Programme. Unfortunately, no members of United Stateless were able to attend, due to travel restrictions stemming from their statelessness. A video about United Stateless was shown during the opening plenary. (View the video here!)


The video was a huge success and one of the most talked about feature of the entire conference.


A second video on the Stateless in Detention Project of United Stateless was shown during a panel on statelessness and detention. United Stateless also hosted a happy hour for allies, partners and friends. During the event, stateless activists from around the world expressed interest in working with United Stateless in the future.

United Stateless Video Presentation

United Stateless comes to New York City!

On April 5-7, 2019,  we held our 4th planning retreat to set our goals and priorities for the coming year. As always, our time together was also was a chance to reflect, rejuvenate, and support one another as stateless people and allies. We set goals for growing our outreach efforts to educate more people about this issue, for building out media/social media presence, and building our organizational capacity.  We also developed our plans for supporting stateless people who are in immigration detention and working with cities to make sure municipal IDs are accessible to people who are stateless. Finally, we talked about what more we need to do to move us toward our ultimate vision of ending statelessness in the U.S.

Our Greeting for the World Conference on Statelessness and Inclusion

As stateless people, we do not have the travel documents that would allow us to travel outside the USA to participate in the World Conference on Statelessness and Inclusion, which will take place in the Hague, Netherlands in June. While we can’t be there in person, we wanted to be there in spirit and send a greeting from New York City’s Battery Park, as we looked out at the Statue of Liberty... How ironic, isn’t it?

4th Planning Retreat

Meeting with Students at Columbia University

Meeting with Students at Columbia University

On Thursday, April 4th, 2019 we met with students studying human rights at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs. After we shared our stories, students asked questions ranging from "how did you find each other?" and "how do you survive day to day life?" to "what can be done?" and "what can we do?"  Many thanks to Professor Betsy Apple and her students for having us!

United Stateless 4th Planning Retreat

Happy Hour Meet and Greet

On Friday evening, United Stateless hosted a “Happy Hour” - it was a time to see old friends and to make new ones. This was our first-ever “friend raising” event and we are so grateful to all those who came out to join us in building community. Thanks to you, we are gaining new powerful allies to help us find solutions.

4th Planning Retreat

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Recent Activity:
Ongoing Projects:

Migration Symposium at Columbia University in the City of New York

On Nov 9, 2018 founding members of United Stateless - Ekaterina and Karina Ambartsoumian-Clough participated in Beyond Representation – Migration Symposium at SIPA, Columbia University.


What does Representation mean in the context of human migration and displacement? Academics, policymakers, and cultural leaders gathered for an afternoon of inclusive and vibrant conversation on that question. Karina and Ekaterina brought the issue of statelessness to the table. Representation can mean many things. To the stateless individual it means the world, literally. We asked the room to raise their hands to show how many were indeed represented as citizens of a nation - any nation. Everyone except Karina and Ekaterina raised their hands.

Keynote speakers at the event:

Firas Kayal, Senior Policy Advisor, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, New York Office

Ashraf El Nour (Director of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Office to the United Nations in New York)

Ravi Ragbir, Immigrant Rights Activist and Executive Director of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York

Migration Symposium: Beyond Representation

Radio Philadelphia ( Interview

On Wednesday, November 7, 2018 founding members of United Stateless, Ekaterina and Nikolai, participated in Radio Philadelphia’s show “Evening with Dr. Borisovich” on 106,5 FM. During this one hour program we addressed the Pennsylvania Russian speaking community regarding statelessness issues in the US. We received great feedback and several calls from listeners.  One caller shared his family member’s in limbo story. You can playback the show here. This event is a very important step of our project focused on reaching out to media resources in communities affected by statelessness.  Stay tuned!

Радио Филадельфия 106.5FM

Guest speakers at the Statelessness in the U.S. and Emerging Challenges in Nationality Workshop

On November 5, 2018, three founding members of United Stateless - Nikolai Levasov, Danah Abdulaziz, and Ekaterina participated as guest speakers and panelists in a workshop organized by The Americas Network on Nationality and Statelessness (Red ANA), Open Society Justice Initiative, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The workshop allowed for the exchange of information on the situation of statelessness in the United States; fostering an understanding of the UNHCR’s global and national efforts to end statelessness by 2024, and sharing of experiences and good practices. The purpose of the event was to build capacity of and collaboration among civil society organizations and legal clinics in order to effectively address statelessness in the United States.

Event keynote speakers included Volker Türk  (UNHCR’s Assistant High Commissioner for Protection) and  Eric Shwartz (Refugees International, President).

Guest speaker at CMS NY Annual Symposium 2018

On October 9, 2018, our founding member Karina Ambartsaumian-Clough spoke at the Center for Migration Studies Annual Academic and Policy Symposium. View Karina's presentation here.

Leading scholars, policy experts, and practitioners examined citizenship in an era of record migration and growing nationalism. The event opened with a keynote address by HE Most Reverend Bernardito C. Auza (Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations and the Organization of American States) on the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration.

Following this presentation, Irene Bloemraad (University of California, Berkeley) discussed her International Migration Review paper, “Understanding Membership in a World of Global Migration: (How) Does Citizenship Matter?” which synthesizes the literature on citizenship and immigration, and theorizes on why citizenship matters. Maria C. Abascal (Columbia University) then presented on citizenship, belonging, and the role of community among Latino Immigrants.

These discussions were followed by panels of distinguished experts on nationalism and membership; citizenship in the Global Compact on Migration; recent US policy changes related to citizenship; and the diverse responses of US communities to immigrants.This was CMS’s fifth annual academic and policy conference, which celebrates the work of leading scholars and thinkers on international migration.

Citizenship in an Era of Record Migration and Growing Nationalism

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How many Stateless Persons are currently in detention with no country to deport them to?

Project #statelessindetention aims at bringing statelessness to the discussion table of the legal community and connecting pro-bono programs with stateless individuals currently lingering in detention.

We are collaborating with UNHCR's Detention Hotline to identify and connect with the stateless in detention.

Our Stateless in Detention Penpal Program is a powerful way to connect directly with the stateless persons currently detained in the US.

Municipal IDs for Stateless Persons?

Stateless people often lack all documentation - and without consular support of any nation to help them obtain such documents as a passport, or a birth certificate they end up continuously coming up against barriers which do not exist for persons with proper documents.

Opening a bank account, accessing health care, or even picking up their kid from school is often impossible for persons who have no acceptable ID.

With our Municipal IDs for Stateless Persons Project we aim at making the process of obtaining a valid ID easier for someone who is stateless.


How many Stateless Persons are currently living in the United States?

There is no reliable data at this time, mainly because there has not until NOW been an organized effort to count stateless persons.


And stateless persons are notoriously difficult to detect because they often lack documentation and are living in the shadows.  Yet we count. We are not a zero. We exist. ​

IF YOU ARE OR MAY BE STATELESS, PARTICIPATE IN the very first organized effort to count stateless persons in the United States. This is extremely important. Click the secure link here:

Advocates & Allies:

        THE FORUM!

Statelessness is a local and a global issue. How can the community at large benefit from addressing statelessness? What are its implications - not only personal, but social and political? Global?

Who are key members of the global community currently engaged in the discussion?

What can the experience of statelessness teach humanity?