According to the LA Times, as paying refugee clients decline, refugee NGOs are now focusing on helping immigrants of all stripes on a longer term basis, presumably by raising private money! Could this be a reawakening of real Christian charity?
I’m really sick of these stories. I see them all over the country (this is the PR run-up to the President’s decision on how many refugees the US will take in FY19, a decision expected to be made public in September).
However, this story did have a few bits of information that are useful and make it worth posting.
Arrivals of refugees have hit historic lows. To stay afloat, resettlement agencies re-brand
The door to the nonprofit World Relief, tucked between a dance studio and a tutoring company on the second floor of a Garden Grove strip mall, still says “refugee resettlement services.”
But it’s been nearly a year since a new refugee has walked through it.
The number of refugees admitted to the U.S. since President Trump took office has dropped to its lowest level in decades. As a result, the office and dozens of other refugee resettlement operations across the country have been forced to close, shift their resources or re-brand.
One of the advances I’ve seen over the last decade is that the media now reports that the contractors*** are paid by the US taxpayers on a per refugee basis.
Nine nonprofits across the country are federally approved to resettle refugees and receive government funding for each case they handle. Until last year, each of them had an office in Southern California.
But World Relief and four others have shut down in the region, suspended operations, laid off staff or reduced their hours.
The office closed its refugee operation last July and shifted its resources to helping immigrants, which had long been a sideline of its operation.
The declines [in refugee admissions] left many agencies depleted of federal funding and struggling to survive.
Even in places where new refugees are still arriving, changes are afoot. The International Rescue Committee office in Glendale, which once resettled more than a thousand refugees each year, has received only about 100 people this year.
“The need just isn’t there in the same way anymore,” said Martin Zogg, the group’s executive director. “So we have to give people other jobs to do.”
I would like to think that the nine resettlement contractors listed below have seen the light and are raising private money and not depending on the money trees growing in Washington, DC for their charitable ‘good works,’ but my cynical side says they are just trying to stay in business until Trump is no longer President and the refugee spigot opens again.
Sorry if you are sick of me saying it, but there will be no long term change to our refugee policy and program as long as there are no changes in the law during the Trump years.
***I post these as often as I can because new readers need to know that these quasi-government groups (funded with taxpayer dollars) are also politically pushing for more immigration of all sorts in Washington—they are not simply refugee advocates.
The number in parenthesis is the percentage of their income paid by you (the taxpayer) to place the refugees and get them signed up for their services (aka welfare)! From most recent accounting, here.
- Church World Service (CWS) (71%)
- Ethiopian Community Development Council (ECDC) (secular)(93%)
- Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) (99.5%)
- Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS) (57%)
- International Rescue Committee (IRC) (secular) (66.5%)
- US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) (secular) (98%)
- Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services (LIRS) (97%)
- United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) (97%)
- World Relief Corporation (WR) (72.8%)