Syrian Refugee Crisis

The U.S. Refugee Admissions Program  (USRAP)

A letter co-authored by Senator’s Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and James Lankford (R-OK) was recently sent to Secretary of State Tillerson and Homeland Security Secretary John Kelley asking for clarity about the status and future of the United States Refugee Resettlement Program.  This bi-partisan inquiry is also signed by fifteen other Republican and Democratic colleagues, including Connecticut’s Chris Murphy.  The letter asks for specific information in light of an Executive Order that temporarily suspends refugee resettlement, now being prevented by a court injunction.

The letter states:  “The USRAP is a critical pillar of our national foreign policy and enables the United States to fulfill key international commitments.  Refugees come from the most vulnerable and persecuted populations around the world and are the most securely vetted travelers to the United States.  According to the United Nations, we are in the midst of the largest refugee crisis in modern history.  We must not lose focus of our need to protect others fleeing persecution around the world.”

Needless to say, we are all eager to learn about the responses from Secretaries Tillerson and Kelley.  The United Church of Christ and its Church World Service partners stand ready to work with the Administration and the USRAP in securing a path for refugees seeking safety around the globe.