STATEMENT – The U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) calls on the Administration to maintain U.S. leadership through the Refugee Admissions Program and urges reconsideration of the new procedures.
For Immediate Release:
October 25, 2017
ARLINGTON, VA –
“Throughout our history, refugees and immigrants have been welcomed to America by presidents from both parties in war and in peace and the current global refugee crisis of over 65 million vulnerable people seeking protection is no time to shrink from this leadership. The U.S. Refugee Admissions Program is a crucial element of our nation’s humanitarian, foreign policy and national security strategies and reflects the core American history and values,” said USCRI Acting Chief Executive Officer Eskinder Negash.
The United States government hand picks every single refugee who enters the United States. U.S. refugee admissions is a tough, thorough, thoughtful and lengthy process involving continuous rigorous security screenings that already includes in-person interviews. Since its inception, security reviews and updates have been an integral part of the refugee processing program and hindering the program now with additional burdensome process is unwarranted.
With the changes proposed, hundreds, possibly thousands of individuals and families whose lives are in danger and were already vetted, approved and promised refuge by the U.S. government will now need to unnecessarily restart the process. Families will continue to be separated for no apparent reason. These program disruptions will have severe long-term consequences for nearly every refugee awaiting safety.
USCRI will join with thousands of community allies to closely monitor and hold the Administration accountable for taking the steps necessary to show commitment and admit the first 10,000 refugees by Christmas this year.
“Each refugee welcomed is a life saved,” said Negash.