Update April 11th: Yikes! Here is another story that says Iraqi refugees in the US have a 67% unemployment rate, so hey Grover Norquist, champion of Open Borders for Business, hire an Iraqi (after all Americans get jobs that is)!
Over and over and over again we have heard the refrain for weeks (for months!)—we need more immigrant laborers (this in spite of the still extremely poor US job market)! What the hell! Then why are we seeing stories about Iraqi refugees who are about to end up in a homeless shelter for lack of work?
And, this is what really ticks me off—among those demonstrating today on Capitol Hill are at least two US government refugee resettlement contractors (two that I know of!). The Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society and the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services (two of nine contractors who monopolize refugee resettlement), urged their groupies to go protest and demand legalization of the millions of workers who will make it even harder for Muna Al-Hamood and her husband to find work!
From WBUR Boston:
One of the ESL students is Muna Al-Hamood. She arrived in Massachusetts three months ago, after militants killed her son.
“I lost one of my sons,” she says in Arabic through tears. “I cannot imagine losing the rest of my children.”
Al-Hamood was a clothing designer in Iraq; now, she’s on the verge of homelessness. When I ask her for an interview, she looks at me skeptically, and asks, “What I am going to get out of this? Is my husband going to get a job?”
Her husband has not been able to find work since they’ve arrived. They can barely make ends meet. “I’m ready for my husband to work any kind of job just so that we don’t have to go to the shelter,” she says.
That fear of going to a homeless shelter is something new, according to resettlement agencies. [Let this damn agency spend their own privately raised money to keep them out of a shelter, or stop bringing them in—ed]
Resettlement agencies help new immigrants from Day 1 — picking them up from the airport, showing them how to use the T, and vamping up their resumes.
One of the largest agencies is the International Institute of New England in Boston’s Financial District. *[ They are a subcontractor of one of the other nine, USCRI—ed] The organization’s CEO and president, Carolyn Benedict-Drew, says part of the problem is that after the first month, refugees generally don’t receive rental help. The government gives them a monthly cash allowance — $428. (That amount goes up to $531 for a couple.)
“It is simply not enough,” Benedict-Drew says. “It’s never been enough, and it probably will never be enough. So, that is really a tremendous dilemma. And you almost feel like you’re setting people up for poverty. It is poverty. It’s a poverty level.” [ALMOST! ALMOST!—ed]
Benedict-Drew says that first year in America is particularly rough for refugees because it’s tough to find a job, and there’s so little money in the pipeline.
But, you are telling us we need more immigrant workers!!!
The article goes on to say we have a moral duty to Iraqis—then why are these very same contractors making legal refugees lives even more difficult by pushing for amnesty for illegals (undocumented Democrats!) who will take even more of the jobs that might have gone to Iraqis?
Endnote: In its most recent report to Congress, the Office of Refugee Resettlement reports that 46% of Iraqis are unemployed and 95% are on food stamps. Where is the morality in that? Heck, Benedict-Drew draws a 6-figure salary maybe she could give Ms. Al-Hamood a little loan to tide her over and keep her out of a homeless shelter!
* Sometimes called the International Institute of Boston just to confuse you!