Update May 19th: Refugee advocates (aka contractors) will be lobbying Congress during the week of June 2-6 for more refugees and more $$$$ (here).
Although, as we reported here last month there will be NO OPPORTUNITY TO TESTIFY IN PERSON.
Many readers have asked about how to submit their testimony. We will outline that below. However, the most important thing you can do is to send your testimony to your elected representatives in Washington—your Congressman and your two Senators (even if they are hopeless!). Be sure to ask them for a response to your concerns!
Also, tell them there should be PUBLIC hearings on the program throughout the country next year!
Then please consider using your testimony in your local media—do a press release or letter to the editor and say you testified to the US State Department about the “size and scope” of the program for FY15.
Your testimony needn’t be long or detailed, but it must be polite and professional (LOL! please refrain from using some of the language we are seeing in rejected comments here at RRW).
Testimony is due in to the US State Department by 5 p.m. May 29th!
Your testimony can be long or short, detailed or general, but get something in by the deadline of 5 p.m. May 29th!
Address testimony to: Anne C. Richard, Asst. Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration, US State Department, Washington, DC.
Reference Federal Register Public Notice 8690
E-mail or fax to Delicia Spruell:
Persons wishing to present written comments should submit them by 5 p.m. on Thursday May 29, 2014 via email to email@example.com or fax (202) 453-9393.
Now listen-up, this is important! If you don’t copy your testimony to your elected officials, you can be sure your testimony to the State Department will never see the light of day! Unless….
New this year! Ask the State Department for a complete record of the comments and tell your elected officials that you want a public record of all comments! I was able to get them in person last year, but that is not possible now since the (in-person) hearing has been abandoned.
To get the most bang for your buck, you must put cc at the bottom of your testimony and list the following:
~Your member of the House of Representatives (look up their addresses!)
~Your US Senators
~Any elected officials in your state who may be interested
Also, send to the pertinent House and Senate committees that deal with refugee issues. You don’t have to send to each committee member but those are linked here for your information:
~US Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security. Go here for list of Subcommittee Members. You will be mailing to the Subcommittee, however, if your US Senator is on that subcommittee then please be sure they are listed prominently on the testimony you send to the State Department. Mail to: U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security, 224 Dirksen Senate Office Building, Washington, DC 20510. Mail your testimony to the Subcommittee even if your Senator is not on it!
~House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security. Go here for a list of all the Subcommittee Members*** and see if your Member of Congress is on the Subcommittee. But, even if he or she isn’t then still send your testimony here (addressed to the Subcommittee): 2138 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC 20515, p/202-225-3951.
When sending anything to your US Senators or Members of Congress always ask a question so that hopefully it forces them to answer your letter! You might ask them to put pressure on the State Department to have “hearings” held in several locations around the country next year!
***Rep. Trey Gowdy is the chairman of the subcommittee and needs educating on this issue! If you do nothing else, send your testimony to him!
Any questions? Put your question in the comment section to this post, and I’ll try to answer it there because others may have the same question. Or, you may have suggestions for others planning to write testimony that I didn’t think of!