FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Nov. 21, 2019
WASHINGTON—The Refugee Protection Act of 2019 was introduced at a news conference earlier today. Refugee Congress strongly supports this legislation and urges all members of Congress to cosponsor the bill.
“There has never been a more critical time to ensure that the U.S. maintains its role as a welcoming leader in refugee support,” said Nili Yossinger, National Director of Refugee Congress. “The Refugee Protection Act (RPA) of 2019 will safeguard the future of refugee resettlement and provide important protections.”
The refugee crisis worldwide is at an all-time high, with 26 million refugees in need of aid while less than one percent are ever resettled. However, the Trump Administration’s Presidential Determination for 2020 set a record-low refugee admissions cap at just 18,000, in addition to placing additional barriers by requiring states and localities to affirmatively consent to resettling refugees.
“Refugees are not a burden. They have helped build America for decades,” said Drocella Mugorewera, a Refugee Congress Board member and Delegate from Tennessee who is a resettled refugee from Rwanda. “Refugees need America, and America needs refugees. Many employers are reaching out to resettlement agencies to look for employees. Refugees get jobs done and do jobs many others do not want to do.”
The RPA would restore resettlement of refugees in the U.S. to historic norms and prevent any president from setting a refugee admissions goal below 95,000 — the historic average. It would also modernize the U.S. refugee and asylum systems and strengthen protections for refugees and asylum-seekers.
Refugee Congress is a nonpartisan advocacy organization built and led by former refugees, asylum-seekers, and other vulnerable migrants to promote the well-being, integration, and dignity of all vulnerable migrants. With delegates across all 50 states and the District of Columbia, we use our voices and experiences to inform and influence decision-makers on critical domestic and international issues that affect our communities. www.refugeecongress.org.