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Response to decision to end Texas cooperation with refugee resettlement program

By Oxfam

In response to Governor Abbott’s decision to end Texas’ cooperation with the US refugee resettlement program, Oxfam America President Ray Offenheiser said:

“Governor Abbott’s decision to end Texas’ cooperation with the US refugee resettlement program plays politics with the lives of people fleeing the horrors of conflict and persecution. Rather than welcoming these families with compassion, he is perpetuating unfounded fears and falsehoods. Resettled refugees are screened and vetted more thoroughly than any group of people coming to our country and most contribute positively to their communities and our economy.”

“Thankfully, Governor Abbott’s short-sightedness is being answered by Texas resettlement organizations across the state, including faith-based community groups, who are ready to fill the gap. We owe these Texans our gratitude for providing leadership, essential services and coordination as politicians fail to do so.”

“As Americans, we should be proud of our legacy of welcoming refugees from across the globe to our shores, but we must do more. President Obama has pledged to resettle 110,000 refugees in the next fiscal year, which is an increase from current numbers but still far fewer than the millions hosted by countries smaller and poorer than our own. It’s also fewer than we have welcomed under both Republican and Democratic presidents since the resettlement program started over four decades ago. We call on Congress to fund the Office of Refugee Resettlement sufficiently to meet this modest task and for leaders to keep their doors open to refugees in their greatest hour of need.”

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