Brookings to Biden: Bring in Even Greater Numbers of Refugees During COVID Pandemic

By bringing in even greater numbers than we have in the past we can show the world that we have “moral authority” and even those dastardly Chinese will have to pay attention!

America needs more Rohingya refugees so we can show the world that we have moral authority and the rest of the globe will follow us to multicultural Nirvana.

 

They are all getting excited for Biden/Harris and here the Leftwing Brookings Institution*** in Washington says forget the idea of simply restoring our Refugee Admissions Program, it needs to be reformed to be even more robust when Biden gets to the White House in January 2021.

I thought I was going to be reading about real reform of the program when this headline was brought to my attention.  But alas, reform=more poor (sick!) third worlders for your town.

 

COVID-19 and the chance to reform US refugee policy

COVID-19 has exposed the underlying fault lines in societies around the world and in modern globalization. Yet by revealing long ignored flaws, it presents a rare chance to reform.

Authors of this prescription for Biden. Yeh, we are going to take advice from a Turk telling us to go big with our refugee admissions numbers?

Unsurprisingly, refugees — the vast majority of whom live deeply precarious lives — have been among the most threatened by the pandemic.

Actually, no, as I have been reporting, the pandemic has barely touched refugee camps worldwide.

A new U.S. administration should seize the opportunity presented by COVID-19 to build a better refugee policy, both for refugees’ benefit and for U.S. national security and strategic interests. [No one has ever shown me that our national security benefits from bringing in people from countries that hate us!—ed]

With the 70th anniversary of the 1951 Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees approaching in 2021, now is an opportune time for an update to U.S. refugee policy.

[….]

Today, vibrant  [They cannot write a refugee story without using that word!—ed] refugee communities can be found in cities like Los Angeles, California, Nashville, Tennessee, and St. Louis, Missouri, which host the largest number of Vietnamese, Kurds, and Bosnians in the United States, respectively. [Notice they don’t mention the vibrant community of Somali Muslims in Minneapolis!—ed]

A compelling argument can be made that America needs refugees and owes part of its economic success to those who came to its shores seeking shelter from persecution and violence. The arrival of refugees helped to uphold America’s identity as a multicultural nation that accepts all victims of persecution who would come to its shores.

But that evil creature Trump has caused our “moral authority” to go into the toilet!

Blah, blah, blah…

I’m very interested to learn, if it’s true, that a battle is going on among Ds about whether to restore the program or go bigger….

As the 2020 presidential election draws near, a key division amongst Democrats who hope to see President Trump leave office in 2021 is between the restorationists, who think things can go back to the way they were before Trump, and the reformists, who see the hurricane of the Trump administration as an opportunity to build back stronger. COVID-19 should render this debate moot with regards to U.S. refugee policy.

Biden has already said he is going big in January (but won’t the pandemic still be raging in January)! And, I have no doubt he and Kamala will be eager to jump on the UN bandwagon on the Global Compact on Refugees!

There are already signs that a post-Trump United States could adopt a more helpful stance on refugees. Presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has promised to rescind the Trump administration’s Muslim ban, restore access to asylum, and increase yearly refugee resettlement quotas to 125,000, a move that would show solidarity with countries hosting large numbers of refugees and likely spur U.S. allies to follow suit. There is also support in Congress for shouldering a greater refugee burden, as seen with Refugee Protection Act proposed in November 2019.

With a definitive end to the COVID-19 pandemic nowhere in sight, the threat facing refugees and the political stability of their host countries calls for the next administration to go beyond simply restoring the traditional U.S. leadership role on refugees. To address the challenge of rebuilding after COVID-19, the United States should endorse the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR).

And then this! By bringing in even greater numbers of refugees we can stick it to China, say the great minds at Brookings?

A revamped U.S. commitment to helping refugees carries direct benefits for U.S. national security priorities, in particular with respect to the strategic rivalry posed by a rising China.

Firstly, revamping its leadership role in managing refugee resettlement would go a long way in helping America reclaim the moral leadership it has enjoyed in past decades, which enabled it to create unique solutions to problems.

America’s support for refugees does more for it in a “battle of ideas” than its military and economic capacity alone: an America that actively protects the less fortunate might more easily win hearts and minds globally while also serving its own national security interests.

It drives me mad, when they say things like that—“win hearts and minds globally”—with not a bit of proof that anyone loves us more, surely not the Chinese!

And what about Americans’ hearts and minds!

The devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed deep flaws in countries around the world and endangered the health and livelihoods of millions. To build a better, more democratic, more equitable world after the pandemic, the United States could start by helping refugees, rather than what it can do by merely seeking its own benefit.

In the wake of the Chinese virus crisis the US has only one obligation and that is to take care of Americans FIRST!

***Brookings tries to pretend it is centrist however,

Starting with the 1990 election cycle, employees of the Brookings Institution gave $853,017 to Democratic candidates and $26,104 to Republican candidates. In total, since 1990, 96 percent of its political donations have gone to Democrats.

White House Supposedly Blindsided as Republican Governors Cave on Refugee Resettlement

“‘If I sign to let refugees in, is that going against the President?’ ” 

(Refugee lobbyist Jen Smyers said elected officials want to know!)

The Answer:  Yes!

When the White House designed their September Executive Order to give governors and county commissions the ultimate say on whether refugees would be placed in their states, they miscalculated on (at least) two fronts.

First they had apparently no idea of how networked and politically savvy the resettlement contractors*** are as their very survival is dependent on their federal funding.  (Just for the record, no one in the administration asked those of us who know the operational structure of the contractor network for any advice.)

And, America Firsters! have no national grassroots network to begin to compare with the nine contractors and their friends.

But, most importantly, the supposed reformers working for the President apparently did not have a firm understanding of how weak most Republican governors are on immigration issues of any sort.

Open Borders Inc. has so thoroughly trained most elected officials to get in line with their agenda, or be called racists and xenophobes, and God forbid, nationalists, that most governors were shocked when they heard they were being forced to go on record on whether they would be ‘welcoming’ poverty and cultural diversity to their states or not.

One positive that might come from this exercise is that Americans, who have had enough of supporting migrants of all stripes, are going to have a list of those who are going against America First!

Yesterday New Yorker reporter Jonathan Blitzer provided details on how the governors are falling one-by-one in line against the President on a key 2016 campaign promise.  Of course we don’t know if Blitzer has all of his facts straight, but he sure sounds like someone with an inside track—a track that we don’t have!

How the White House Is Trying—and Failing—to Keep States from Resettling Refugees

One of the chief priorities of the Trump White House has been to dismantle the refugee system, which has existed, with broad bipartisan support, since 1980. Within the first week of Trump’s Presidency, his Muslim ban temporarily froze the resettlement of refugees in the U.S. and cut the over-all number of people whom the federal government would allow into the country. Every year since, the White House has lowered the annual refugee “ceiling,” which now stands at eighteen thousand, down from more than a hundred and ten thousand, at the start of 2017. But the President hasn’t limited his attacks on the system to Washington. A provision of the Muslim ban, for instance, specified that individual states and localities should be allowed to refuse to accept refugees. At the time, it wasn’t clear how states could do so, but the premise was obvious: if the White House could turn refugee resettlement into a partisan wedge issue, Republican-controlled states might abandon the program and side with the President.

Jen Smyers works for Church World Service. CWS is suing the Administration to stop the Executive Order. They have for decades decided where refugees will be placed in America and they don’t want any governor or local government messing with their power to change your community by changing the people.

On September 26th, Trump issued an executive order requiring that every local and state jurisdiction sign a consent letter in order to resettle refugees. If a governor or county commission failed to produce a letter, the U.S. State Department, which oversees the process, would effectively consider that jurisdiction ineligible for resettlement. The order was designed to put additional pressure on local officials, by forcing them to opt in to the resettlement program rather than opt out. “A lot of governors and state officials don’t want to make this decision,” Jen Smyers, of Church World Service, a resettlement agency, told me. “Immigration has always been the jurisdiction of the federal government, and they don’t believe it’s their role. At first, some officials would also say, ‘If I sign to let refugees in, is that going against the President?’ ”

Yes, of course it is going against the President! The President made it clear at a Minnesota rally that he wanted to curtail refugee resettlement in America.

 

These questions intensified after Trump, at a campaign rally in Minnesota, in October, complained about the number of Somali refugees who have settled in the state in recent years. “Leaders in Washington brought large numbers” of them, he said. The crowd booed, on cue, then cheered when the President announced that he would give states and cities an opportunity to prevent more refugees from coming. “No other President would be doing that,” he said.

Each year, nine refugee-resettlement agencies across the country bid for contracts with the government [LOL! bid for bodies!—ed] This time, at the behest of the White House, the State Department added a caveat to the application: the federal government would not resettle refugees in a particular place unless consent was provided in accordance with the executive order.  Meanwhile, a few weeks after Trump signed the order, officials at the State Department told resettlement groups that they planned to contact mayors and governors to request consent letters from them. But the department never did; a month later, the resettlement groups had to start conducting outreach on their own. “The best way to get someone not to write a letter is to not tell them they need to do it,” Smyers said.

Lo and behold, the contractors went to work in October with a massive lobbying campaign in key states and counties and began racking up consent letters.  The best prizes of all are the Republican Governors!

The Trump Administration was caught off guard by the positions taken by Republican-controlled states. Just before Thanksgiving, after the governor of North Dakota submitted his consent letter, the White House organized a phone call with governors’ offices to “enhance state and local involvement” in resettlement. Those invited to participate were given only a few days notice.

Continue reading to see what happened.

And, see what a prize Tennessee’s governor was for the contractors.

Blitzer reported also that the lawsuit the contractors have filed against the Executive Order will be heard by a friendly to them federal judge on January 8th.

Not mentioned by Blitzer, because he likely has no clue, is that big globalist corporations and Chambers of Commerce are lobbying the governors for more refugees to enhance the low wage labor pool especially in the heartland riddled with BIG MEAT slaughterhouses.

But that doesn’t fit the narrative that the likes of the New Yorker want to portray which is humble humanitarians vs. the menace in the White House.

We are seeing numerous news accounts of which governors are going against the President.  Early next week we will post on which Republican governors have gotten their consent letters to the US State Department.

Before Monday, I might post on South Dakota’s Republican Governor Kristi Noem’s welcome announcement because of who is cheering her consent.

If you have opened RRW for the first time with this post, please see my category Where to find information’ for all the news on the President’s Executive Order.

 

***For new readers these (below) are the nine federally-funded refugee contractors that monopolize all refugee placement in America.  For decades they have decided in secrecy where to place refugees and they don’t want to lose that power because even as they pontificate about their religious convictions and humanitarian zeal, they are Leftwing political activist groups working to change America by changing the people and using your money to do it!

And, they do not limit their advocacy toward only legal immigration programs, but are heavily involved in supporting the lawlessness at our borders.

The question isn’t as much about refugees per se, but about who is running federal immigration policy now and into the future?  

I continue to argue that these nine contractors are the heart of Americas Open Borders movement and thus there can never be long-lasting reform of US immigration policy when these nine un-elected phony non-profits are paid by the taxpayers to work as community organizers pushing an open borders agenda.

North Dakota: Cass County Caves to Lutheran Refugee Contractor; Votes for More Refugees

But, continue reading!  There is good news too!  Wait for it!

Remember that I told you here that North Dakota Republican Governor Doug Burgum went down the wimpy middle and said the state would take more refugees if local jurisdictions agreed.  So it looks like Cass County has given the governor his green light.

Read all about it here.

Cass County Commissioners Vote Yes to Refugee Resettlement

Unless the governor changes his mind, North Dakota taxpayers will be continuing to prop up a 4-decades-old federal program that was never supposed to be a burden on local and state taxpaying citizens.

If you are a new reader, be sure to see an important post yesterday where I explain what the Open Borders Left is doing to smash the President’s September Executive Order that gives state and local government an opportunity to opt-in or opt-out of being a refugee placement city or county.

Now to some good news!

Cass County might have caved, but the citizens of Bismarck came out in force to urge their county commission to say NO! to more refugees and the commissioners decided to postpone the decision.

Before I give you the news, know that it was 11 degrees in Bismarck last night!  Can you pull this off where you live?

So many people came out to oppose more refugees in Burleigh County that the Commissioners postponed their vote! https://www.kfyrtv.com/content/news/Full-house-at-Burleigh-Commission-meeting-Refugee-Resettlement-decision-postponed-565717621.html

From KXNET:

Decision On Refugee Consent Delayed

BISMARCK — People came from all over Monday evening in the hopes of making their voice heard to the Burleigh County Commission.

Bismarck Mayor Steve Bakken was in attendance.

With a heavy police presence, you could feel the tension in the air as most of the crowd was there to convince the commission to vote against giving consent to Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota for a refugee settlement.

The consent is necessary after President Donald Trump signed an executive order in September that requires state and local governments to give consent to whether they will accept refugees or not.

Some people KX News spoke with did not want that to happen.

“124 people statewide does not have an impact, however, if the 124 do a chain migration that could easily be 1,200. And in a state of 750,000 people, 1,200 is a lot,” said local resident Phillip Cohen, who’s against allowing the consent.

The problem was so many people turned up to the meeting, they couldn’t fit everyone inside, so in the interest of fairness, the commission decided to table the matter until a larger venue could be secured in the near future.

County Commission Chairman Brian Bitner

Brian Bitner is the chair of the commission and said he also has reservations about granting the consent for financial reasons.

“I haven’t seen anything in this package, anywhere, that tells me that we’re consenting to five or 50 or 500 or anything. So North Dakota is already the highest per capita state for refugee resettlement in terms of number of citizens, so in the absence of any sort of number, there’s no way we could know the cost to the state or the county, and I simply can’t support that,” said Bitner.

Opponents of the news said an increase in refugees could lead to a drain on government services and an increase in crime, something the pro-refugee crowd overwhelmingly denied.

[….]

But with no decision Monday, the clock is ticking, because agencies must submit their written consent by Jan. 21 or lose federal funds that could be used to reunite families and place refugees in places with jobs, and other supportive means.

More here.

As for the January 21 deadline, it is for the nine resettlement contractors and their subcontractors to have their plans submitted to the US State Department in order to get their federal funding.  At that time they need to have written permission from the governor and from the county government, or the city (if applicable), in hand.

(See the US State Department’s funding guidance here.)

They are shooting to get those approvals by Christmas, so you must get moving where you live!  As I’ll tell you in an upcoming post, the Leftwing refugee contractors and others in the Open Borders movement are putting every county in play!  (Not just those with existing sites, like these.)

This is not just a bureaucratic exercise! 

The Left has made it into a referendum on Donald Trump’s refugee policies in an election year.  The President is correct that state’s can choose whether to be a resettlement state or not. For us it is a referendum on state’s rights and whether local citizens will have a say in whether their communities will be changed (forever!).

Trump’s Executive Order on Refugee Resettlement Won’t Stop Refugee Arrivals to Your State or Community

Editor’s note:  Concerned about growing assumptions that the recent Trump Executive Order will solve the problem of no local or state say about refugee admissions, a long-time observer of the program with legal expertise, David James, has explained for us that the EO does not do what it purports to do. 

Although grateful that the President has signaled his concern for a major flaw in the program, we must set the record straight.

For new readers, VOLAGs (short for Voluntary Agencies), is the refugee industry title by which the federal refugee contractors refer to themselves.

(Emphasis below is mine)

Decisions made by federal agencies and the VOLAGs (voluntary agencies) they pay, about where to place arriving refugees, along with secondary migration, have created Minneapolis’ “Little Mogadishu”, Nashville’s “Little Kurdistan” and Ft. Wayne’s “Little Burma” to name just a few of the refugee ethnocentric enclaves.

No executive order, including the President’s recent Executive Order on Enhancing State and Local Involvement in Refugee Resettlement (EO) can stop refugee migration, either initial or secondary, from changing the demographics of your town and/or state.

While the EO suggests that the federal government will not resettle refugees in communities unless both the state and local governments consent, that may not be what happens at the end of the day.

Putting secondary migration aside, Section 2(b) of the EO specifically preserves the authority of the three agencies which administer the refugee resettlement program (State, HHS and DHS), to override any non-consent to refugee placement by either the state and/or local government.

With the exception of the lowered cap of 18,000, the EO is more a restatement of consultation requirements with state and local governments which are already in statute and regulation. Not only is the concept of “consultation” nowhere defined, but the outcomes of any consultation are not binding on federal agency decisions on refugee placement. And the EO doesn’t make any non-consent binding either.

The U.S. Code sections referenced in the EO mean that non-consent for resettlement won’t stop family reunification or the participation by the VOLAG federal contractors in deciding where refugees are placed.

VOLAGs whose operations are almost wholly dependent on the flow of federal dollars, are paid for each refugee they resettle. As noted in a 2012 GAO report, local VOLAG “affiliate funding is based on the number of refugees they serve, so affiliates have an incentive to maintain or increase the number of refugees they resettle each year rather than allowing the number to decrease.”

Last fiscal year when the refugee admission cap was lowered to 30,000, the State Department managed to fund all nine national resettlement contractors. Admittedly, the lowered ceiling of 18,000 for FY20 may prove challenging for some in the resettlement contractor industry to remain viable.

However, as Ann Corcoran reminds us, the refugee cap has not included other categories of entrants such as the Special Immigrant Visa holders from Iraq and Afghanistan who receive the same access to public benefits, such as state Medicaid programs, as refugees. The same goes for any successful asylum petition.

And once on the ground, refugees can and do go anywhere they want, nullifying any state and local non-consent per the EO.

Seeing one more opportunity (the announcement of the EO) to take a whack at the President, PA Gov. Tom Wolf (D) says Pennsylvania welcomes refugees. Was there any consultation?  Did concerned citizens of PA get to weigh-in before the Governor shot off a letter? NO!  PA borders West Virginia (a state that gets few refugees). Anything to stop refugees from arriving in PA and immediately moving to WV? NO! https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/466091-pennsylvania-governor-tells-trump-his-state-will-keep-welcoming-refugees

Governors in Oregon and Pennsylvania have already issued consent to receive refugees and New Jersey’s governor has announced the state’s intention to get back into the resettlement program.

While some refugee arrivals may stay put at their initial resettlement site, for others, consenting states will be nothing more than ports of entry for movement to non-consenting states and local communities.

The EO does not directly address the status of states which previously withdrew from the  resettlement program for purposes of non-consent. It’s possible that this question will be answered by the “process” to be developed by the State Department and HHS as required by the EO.

States like Tennessee which withdrew from the refugee program over 10 years ago, have since had their state refugee program administered by an ORR (U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement) selected NGO which just happens to have its own federally contracted refugee resettlement program.

When the Refugee Act was passed in 1980, Congress authorized reimbursing states 100% for three full years of the state cost of providing Medicaid for each refugee brought to a state by a federal contractor. Sen. Ted Kennedy, the chief sponsor of the Refugee Act was pushing for four years of refugee support as opposed to the House proposed two years of support:

“[i]n my judgment, it is essential that we continue to receive the full support of State governments for our refugee programs; I believe that we would jeopardize that support and cooperation if we were to transfer the resettlement burden to the States after the refugees have been in this country for only 2 short years.”

The House and Senate subsequently agreed to three years of reimbursement to states.

Feds shift cost to the states

Five years into the program, due to cuts in federal spending for refugee assistance, ORR began to reduce the three years of authorized reimbursement to states and by 1991, eliminated it altogether. Three years later in 1994, the federal regulation permitting a state to withdraw from the program and be replaced by an ORR state replacement designee, was added.

Beginning in 1990, various federal reports have admitted to shifting costs associated with the refugee program to state and local governments. State governments continue to incur these costs, even after withdrawing from the federal refugee program because federal contractors are enabled by ORR to continue initial resettlement in these states.

It remains to be seen whether these ORR designated state replacements which operate independently of the state government, will also have authority to consent for the state per the consent process required by the EO.

Tennessee has sued the federal government because of its Constitutionally impermissible taking of state funds for the federal refugee program by virtue of the cost shifting. The admissions to shifting federal program costs to states stand in stark contrast to the claims of the federally funded and financially dependent contractors that the program is “100% paid for by the federal government.”

President Trump’s EO fails to address the multiple layers of dysfunction in the resettlement program and Constitutionally suspect policies. Nor is there any reason to think that Congress will find its way to straightening out the mess they helped to create and continue to foster.

 

Endnote: It is vitally important that you send this detailed analysis to everyone you know.  We can support this President while at the same time pointing out where he might be going wrong on an issue that many of us believe is paramount to putting America First!

Mark Krikorian at the Center for Immigration Studies addressed many of our concerns about the EO in his piece at National Review yesterday, see it here.

Ten things your town needs to know as it is targeted for refugee resettlement

Editor: If that title looks familiar, then you must be a long time reader.  But, it occurred to me just this morning, answering an e-mail from a reader, that since we get new followers every day and since we have now posted 7,624 articles here at RRW, that maybe re-posting some of those from time to time might be useful.
I do want to remind you that the search function here at RRW is very good, so please use it! (Upper left hand side bar) You might first search for your city or state and see if we have written about it previously.
Since the Obama Administration is in crunch time to get as many refugees (especially the Syrians) seeded into your towns as they can, I thought this post from March 2015 would be useful.

Ten things your town needs to know:

As we have been writing ad nauseam lately, the Obama Administration is now out of the shadows with its plan to “seed” towns and cities across America with diversity.

President Barack Obama, flanked by Cecilia Muñoz, director of the White House Domestic Policy Council, left, and senior White House adviser Valerie Jarrett, speaks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, Monday, June 24, 2013, during a meeting with CEOs, business owners and entrepreneurs to discuss immigration reform. Obama hosted the meeting to discuss the importance of commonsense immigration reform including the Congressional Budget Office analysis that concludes immigration reform would promote economic growth and reduce the deficit. Sitiing next to Obama are . (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Changing America by changing the people. President Barack Obama, flanked by Cecilia Muñoz, director of the White House Domestic Policy Council, left, and senior White House adviser Valerie Jarrett are changing the people by ‘planting’ immigrant “seedlings” in towns across America!

‘Seed’ is their word!  Your community is the soil into which the migrants of all sorts (legal and illegal) are being planted according to Obama’s Task Force on New Americans.   It begs the questions:  Are we being colonized?  Do they plan to replace us some day?  Sound far-fetched?  Knowing Obama, are you willing to gamble on that?

We have long maintained a ‘fact sheet’ about how the UN/US State Department’s Refugee Admissions and Resettlement Program works, click here to learn more.

But, I realized yesterday, while thinking about the newest proposed seed community*** in Rep. Trey Gowdy’s backyard in Spartanburg, SC, that we needed a quick primer on what elected officials and citizens should know if they are being pressured to ‘welcome the stranger‘ (this guilt-tripping language is one way they pressure your town!). Update: Gowdy lost, assuming he ever tried, and Spartanburg is now an established resettlement site.

So here are my Ten Things you need to know!

1)  In most cases, the United Nations is choosing our refugees.  Topping the list right now are Iraqis, Burmese, Congolese, Somalis and Bhutanese.  The UN is pressuring the US to take a large number, 10,000 or so, Syrians.  We are bringing in refugees from countries which hate us.  Your town does not get to choose who you get!  You will receive racially, culturally and religiously diverse people, usually very different from your local population and very different from each other.  That old ‘melting pot’ concept is dead because the numbers are too high.

2)  Often the US State Department’s chosen resettlement contractor for your town, sounds like a church group, or other benign-sounding non-profit.  They may have a religious-sounding name, but know that they are being paid by the head from the federal treasury to bring refugees to your town.  It is not the case that they are passing a plate on Sunday morning to pay for this very expensive program. Here are the nine major contractors which have 350 subcontractors working for them (headquartered in over 180 cities so far).

3)  The contractor’s job is to get the refugee family their “services.”  That means they hold the refugees’ hands until they are settled usually in tax-payer subsidized housing, get them signed up for most forms of welfare including food stamps and other cash assistance, sign them up for health care and enroll the kids in school. This special class of legal immigrant is entitled to welfare!  The contractor is also paid with your tax dollars to give refugees job counseling and training.  The contractor may also be working closely with some big business (and the Chamber of Commerce) nearby which is looking for cheap labor.

4)  The contractor’s job ends in 3-6 months at which point they move on to bringing in the next fresh group of “clients,” often the relatives of the first group.  Earlier, and still struggling, refugees are left in the care of your social services department. At this point the contractors are entrenched in your town and will call you racists, rednecks and xenophobes if your citizens want to slow the flow.

5)  Your town will never get out of the program once the contractor has an office set up and staff to pay.  Many cities are trying to get out now and can’t:  Manchester, NH, Springfield and Lynn, Mass, Amarillo, TX come to mind. Because there have developed “pockets of resistance” (their words), the State Department is desperately out scouting for fresh territory.

6)  The greatest impact on your local social and economic welfare will be felt first in the school system, followed usually by the shortage of government subsidized housing.  Your school system may end up with 50 or more languages represented in the student population.  The number-one language of refugees entering the US right now is Arabic, Somali is number four. (Update: Somali has moved to number 3, here.)

7)  Refugees are permitted entry into the US with HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis among other medical problems.  Physical and mental health challenges will most likely overburden your local health department.

8)  Your local government is responsible (Clinton-era Executive Order) for providing costly interpreters for the myriad languages being spoken in the school system, the health system and the criminal justice system should problems arise.

9)  Refugees who do find work, work at entry level jobs and minimum wage so they will still be able to benefit from many welfare programs open to low-income Americans.  Elder refugees are eligible for SSI.   The refugees are Legal Permanent Residents and can begin the citizenship process quickly.

10)  If they say they are coming to your town with the first group of refugees, there is only one thing you can do!  ASK QUESTIONS IN PUBLIC.  Demand that your elected officials get involved. Demand that a community meeting be held, for the US State Department, the Office of Refugee Resettlement (in HHS), your state refugee office (if there is one) and their contractors, to answer questions from the citizens of the town or city. Get your Member of Congress and US Senators involved too!  Don’t forget your state legislators!   The State Department and its contractors HATE to answer questions!  Tell your local elected officials you want a public hearing!  Tell your elected officials that you want the federal government and its contractors to provide a plan!

You want them to answer questions such as these below. 

Remember you have every right to know what is being planned for your town.  They will bully you, call you names and say you can’t stop them anyway, but refuse to be bullied!

Demand answers (in public)!

Who is coming?  From where and how many?

Will they stop the resettlement if the town is becoming economically or socially stressed?

What security and health screening have the refugees undergone?

How many will come each year?

Who is paying for their health care?

Who is paying to educate the children who don’t speak English and may never have attended school?

Does your town have an adequate supply of government-supported housing?  Will demands for housing crowd out American elderly, poor or disabled citizens?

Where will they work?  Do we have high unemployment already?

I’m sure you can think of others.  After getting answers (good luck!) and having a vigorous public discussion, then your town can decide based on all the facts whether you will eagerly “welcome” New Americans to your community, or not.

Endnote:  There are other refugee experts in the country, so let me know if I’m missing anything here and I’ll add it!

Update!!!  Call this #11: an experienced researcher just reminded me that concerned citizens must form a citizens’ group to research the structure of the program in your state to obtain the FISCAL and legal facts about the program as the structure can vary from state to state.

*** This post (on Spartanburg) brought in the highest number of readers we have ever had for one post over a brief two days!  

An afterthought:  If you should get a public meeting/hearing be sure to educate yourselves on the Delphi Technique, a strategy often used by government agencies wishing to control the outcome of a meeting.  Go here to see what Judy said about it in advance of the public meeting held in Hagerstown, MD in September 2007.

The US State Department has said they won’t go where they are not wanted, but they are desperate now (too many refugees coming in and too few ‘welcoming’ towns) and are shoving refugees down the throats of reluctant communities, but you still mustn’t roll over and give up! You do have a right to determine the character of your community and how your tax dollars are spent, so continue to speak up.  Thank God, we aren’t Europe yet! 

As the November elections approach make this issue a top priority whenever you have an opportunity to meet candidates at all levels of government.  You can be sure if Hillary Clinton is elected President this program will never be reformed, but will be put on steroids.