In September 2017, President Trump announced a refugee admissions goal of 45,000 for Fiscal Year 2018. This is the lowest in the history of the US refugee resettlement program, which has settled an average of 80,000 refugees annually for over 40 years. Projections estimate that the United States will resettle only around 25,000 refugees this year- a little over half of the historically low 45,000 our country promised to resettle. The consequences of low arrivals have been profound as tens of thousands of refugees remain in precarious or dangerous situations overseas.
In the face of these reductions as well as travel bans, many people are speaking out for a more welcoming stance toward refugees and for an increase in the number of arrivals. Add your voice to the chorus of those standing up for refugees. Let the administration and your elected officials know that these executive orders are not representative of the United States that we know and love. Below are some suggested actions.
1. Contact the White House by phone via the comment line (202)456-1111 to leave a message, or the phone switchboard (202-456-1414) to speak with a paid staffer who will take a message.
2. Call your U.S. Senators and Representatives at (202) 224-3121. Please call this line 3 times to be connected with your one Representative and two Senators. (See How to Contact Your Elected Officials)
Sample Script: “I’m your constituent from [City, State], and I support refugee resettlement in the U.S. I am strongly opposed to President Trump’s “Presidential Determination” that reduced the number of arrivals to 45,000 this year. I urge you to do everything you can to increase the rate of arrivals so that at least the 45,000 will be admitted before the end of the federal fiscal year, October 31, 2018. I also urge you as a member of Congress, which must approve each Presidential Determination, to endorse an arrival increase to 90,000 for FY 2018-19.
3. Keep urging people to sign this MoveOn petition. It currently has over 88,000 signatures.
4. Tweet @POTUS and @realDonaldTrump to state your support for increasing the pace of refugee arrivals. (See USCRI Twitter page for ideas.)