Blog & Stories / 11.04.19

An Open Letter to Refugees

Late Friday night, President Trump signed the Presidential Determination for FY2020, setting the refugee admissions cap to the devastatingly low number of 18,000 [RCUSA responds here]. Recognizing the toll significantly devastating news continues to play on our global community, Refugee Council USA, along with partner organizations, submits this open letter to refugees waiting for relief around the world. The letter can be read below in English and Spanish, or downloaded [English, Spanish].

English

November 4, 2019

In the midst of a significant onslaught of distressing news about the future of the refugee resettlement program in the United States, Refugee Council USA – a coalition of 25 organizations working to support and welcome refugees – and refugee communities across the US offer this open letter in solidarity and with compassion for refugees around the world who are waiting to be resettled to safety.

Refugees resettled in the US play a significant role in many of our organizations, and we are devastated by the blows that the administration has made to this country’s historic commitment to those seeking refuge and asylum. The US has a long history of opening its doors to refugees and for those of us who are new Americans, we’ve worked hard to give back to the communities that welcomed us. Years later, as we have accomplished our goals and become integral members of our community – as neighbors, classmates, co-workers, and even your elected representatives – we are dismayed that this administration fails to recognize the contributions of refugees that are making America great.

We know that many of you are still waiting for a solution after years of living with fear, food insecurity, uncertainty about the future, and perhaps a lack of hope. Our hearts are with you. Many of us have experienced the relief that comes with resettlement, and, as witnesses to the power of this experience, we will not sit idle. We pledge to continue our efforts to keep America’s doors open. As a united community of advocates, Refugee Council USA wants you to know that you are not alone. We stand alongside you, and proclaim that refugees are always welcome here.

Signed,

Center for Victims of Torture

Church World Service

The Episcopal Church

Ethiopian Community Development Council, Inc.

The Exodus Institute

HIAS

International Refugee Assistance Project

International Rescue Committee

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service

Migration and Refugee Services/USCCB

Refugee Congress

Refugee Council USA

USAHello

World Relief

Español

4 de noviembre del 2019

 Entre el interminable flujo de noticias angustiosas sobre el futuro del programa de reasentamiento para refugiados de Estados Unidos, el Consejo de Refugiados USA (conocido como Refugee Council USA en inglés) – una coalición de 25 organizaciones que trabajan para apoyar y dar la bienvenida a refugiados – y comunidades de refugiados de todo Estados Unidos ofrecen esta carta en solidaridad y con compasión para los refugiados de todo el mundo que esperan ser reasentados a la seguridad.

Los refugiados que han sido reasentados en Estados Unidos juegan un papel importante en muchas de nuestras organizaciones, y estamos devastados por los golpes que la administración le ha dado a el compromiso que este país le ha tenido históricamente a aquellos que buscan refugio y asilo. Estados Unidos tiene una larga historia de abrir sus puertas hacia los refugiados y nosotros que somos nuevos americanos hemos trabajado para devolverle a las comunidades que nos han dado la bienvenida. Años después, como hemos ido logrando nuestros objetivos y nos hemos convertido en miembros íntegros de nuestras comunidades – como vecinos, compañeros de clase o trabajo, y hasta sus representantes electos – estamos consternados que esta administración no reconoce las contribuciones de los refugiados que hacen grande a Estados Unidos.

Sabemos que muchos de ustedes siguen esperando una solución después de años de vivir en miedo, inseguridad alimentaria, incertidumbre sobre el futuro, y quizás con falta de esperanza. Nuestros corazones están con ustedes. Muchos de nosotros hemos tenido la experiencia del alivio que deja el reasentamiento, y, como testigos al poder de esta experiencia, no nos quedaremos ociosos. Nos comprometemos a continuar nuestros esfuerzos para mantener abiertas las puertas de Estados Unidos. Como una comunidad de defensores, el Consejo de Refugiados USA les quiere decir que no están solos. Estamos a su lado, y proclamamos que los refugiados siempre son bienvenidos aquí.

Firmado,

 Center for Victims of Torture

Church World Service

The Episcopal Church

Ethiopian Community Development Council, Inc.

The Exodus Institute

HIAS

International Refugee Assistance Project

International Rescue Committee

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service

Migration and Refugee Services/USCCB

Refugee Congress

Refugee Council USA

USAHello

World Relief