A quick primer for new readers: The Refugee Contractors

It just occurred to me, when writing my post earlier this morning about State Department secrecy, that new readers are probably lost and confused by the many names of local organizations placing refugees in your towns.
First, there are nine major federally funded ‘non-profit’ groups that receive funding (some as much as 98% of their budget) from mainly the US Department of State (Population Refugees and Migration) and the Office of Refugee Resettlement which is in Health and Human Services.  (An aside: it is critical to pay attention to Trump cabinet picks for State and for HHS). Smaller federal grants come from other agencies as well.
Here they are:

Then working for them are hundreds of subcontractors scattered across 49 states.  Go here to the government’s data base of resettlement subcontractors (aka affiliates) working in your state.  Below is a screen shot of the Connecticut page.
See the abbreviation in the left hand corner of each entry. That stands for the major contractor over this particular subcontractor.
Obviously USCCB is the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. CWS is Church World Service. Not so easy to identify is DFMS. That is the other name (don’t ask me why!) for Episcopal Migration Ministries and it is Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society (scroll to bottom of page here).  My personal guess for why there are two names is that it has to do with their financial structure (keeping their finances hard to track?).
But when you look at that data base know three things.  1) the data base is out of date, 2) we are told there are 47 new sites not listed and, 3) see if you live within 100 miles of one of these offices because that means your town is fair game to receive refugees.
Here are some of the new sites being chosen by the US State Department (that we know of!):

Asheville, NC

Rutland, VT

Reno, NV

Ithaca, NY

Missoula, MT

Aberdeen, SD (may have been thwarted as a primary resettlement site!)

Charleston, WV

Fayetteville, AR

Blacksburg, VA

Pittsfield, MA

Northhampton, MA

Flint, MI

Bloomington, IN

Traverse City, MI

Poughkeepsie, NY

Wilmington, DE

Watertown, NY (maybe)

Youngstown, OH (maybe)

Knowledge is Power!

Go to our Frequently Asked Questions in the header. And, check out our categorywhere to find information’ if you are trying to research the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program.  Also, our search function is really good so type in a few key words (try your state to begin with) and I am confident you will get an education!

Ho-hum another Trump fear article reveals an interesting bit of information

Apparently some refugee advocates blame the US State Department’s decades old secrecy about the Refugee Admissions Program (RAP) for the backlash against it!

He (resettlement contractor Christopher George) places some of the blame on the State Department, which encourages resettlement programs to operate at a low profile (in secrecy!).

US STATE DEPT. NO-SHOW! More than 100 people came out to a refugee forum in Bloomington, Indiana last week. Experts Don Barnett and Jim Simpson debated one lonely pro-refugee immigration lawyer, when Barbara Day, representing the US State Department, was a no-show and purportedly discouraged refugee agencies in the state to not participate as well, thus confirming what Connecticut contractor George told NPR. Photo and story from Bloomington, here: http://www.idsnews.com/article/2016/11/locals-discuss-concerns-for-refugee-families

This is from NPR (no surprise), but buried in its many paragraphs of sad stories about poor Muslim refugees we found a point of agreement with a resettlement contractor (emphasis below is mine):

Donald Trump’s election has sent tremors through America’s refugee advocate community, and caused fear and uncertainty among the most recently resettled refugees, the Syrians. They listened with alarm as candidate Trump called them “terrorists” and blamed them, incorrectly, for violent attacks in America.

“That rhetoric has had an impact,” says Becca Heller, director of the International Refugee Assistance Project, a legal aid program. “Trump has been successful in politicizing refugee admissions in a way that they have not been politicized before.”


Advocates argue that backtracking on American commitments could encourage other countries to follow the U.S. example, deepening a humanitarian crisis for allies and giving talking points to Muslim militants who claim that the West is hostile to Islam. [Is our goal here to make Muslim militants happy and prove we are good anti-hostile people or to help legitimate refugees, I wonder—ed]

But bipartisan support for refugee resettlement unraveled after last November’s Paris terrorist attacks, when early reporting erroneously identified one of the attackers as a Syrian refugee. Support further declined following last December’s terrorist attack in San Bernardino, Calif., and a mass shooting in June at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando.

Remember this is about money (your money!)

These so-called charities can’t help refugees until they have wads of your tax dollars in their pockets!  I say if the general public is supportive, people should contribute private money, not steal from tax payers!
NPR continued:

Now that Republicans control both chambers of Congress and the White House, refugee advocates fear there will be severe funding cuts for their work.

Note in the following paragraph from the NPR story,  how an employee of a resettlement agency spins his rhetoric about fears of terrorism by saying there have been no arrests for domestic terrorism in the refugee community.  He is completely discounting all of the arrests and convictions of refugees for planning terrorism abroad.  

Somali refugee Hamza Ahmed sentenced to 15 years just yesterday for attempting to join ISIS.

We gave you a few cases here the other day (including domestic jihadists like the Somali Christmas tree bomber, and don’t forget the St. Cloud knife attacker!), but here is news just this morning about another terrorism conviction of a Somali refugee.
You raised this Islamic jihadist wannabee with your tax dollars.
NPR (apparently reporter Deborah Amos is too lazy or too biased to get the facts about refugees and terrorism, so George spins unchallenged!):

Refugee advocate Chris George says the campaign rhetoric could undermine a program that has resettled 750,00 refugees since Sept. 11, 2001 — with not one arrest for a domestic terrorism charge.

However, here is the part of the story I found most useful:

“This all goes back to a fundamental lack of information about the refugee program and lack of contact,” he says.

George is the executive director of Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services***, a nonprofit agency in New Haven, Conn. His organization has resettled more than 250 refugees this year in a distinctive program that partners with private groups to place refugee families in communities, “so people can meet them and have them live down the street and walk to school with their children.”

Most Americans have never met a refugee, says George, and that is part of the problem.

He places some of the blame on the State Department, which encourages resettlement programs to operate at a low profile.

And, why does the US Department of State operate in secrecy? I maintain it is because if the general taxpaying public knew the full story about the RAP it would be rejected almost everywhere!
*** IRIS is a Church World Service subcontractor.  Go here to learn about CWS finances.