Still We Stand
On January 27th, the new presidential administration announced significant changes to U.S. Immigration policy. The executive order includes a substantial reduction of refugees allowed to enter the U.S., as well as funding cuts to the Refugee Admissions Program—and to resettlement agencies like World Relief—that compromise our ability to adequately care for refugees and immigrants.
While governmental policy may change, our commitment to standing alongside the persecuted, displaced, and vulnerable remains firm—but we need your help.
Help us keep the doors open.
The Trump administration’s temporary ban on refugee admissions to the U.S. will have very real consequences for thousands of vulnerable people waiting to arrive in the country. These sisters from Iraq were separated for many years. While one was resettled in Spokane in 2013, the other waited overseas for her refugee status application to be approved. All they could do was wait and hope as the situation in Iraq became more and dangerous. Fortunately, they were reunited before the ban, but many others are now being turned back.
Since we began resettling refugees in 1992, World Relief Spokane has partnered with the local Church and greater community to welcome and integrate refugees into the United States. The expected cutbacks to U.S. refugee programs and funding will compromise our ability to do this work and the infrastructure needed to serve refugees in the years to come. You can make a difference.
Let Your Voice Be Heard
Welcoming refugees is a strong American tradition, and refugees bring cultural vibrancy, family values, and economic vitality to the communities where they are welcomed. You can make a difference by making your voice heard. You can be an advocate for the most vulnerable among us. Today. Now.
Keep The Doors Open
Budget cutbacks will severely compromise the programs in place to successfully welcome refugees. World Relief Spokane's commitment to resettlement and wealth of expertise and connections are now at stake. Your support right now is vital to ensuring that we will able to welcome refugees for years to come.
President Trump's Executive Order doesn't just ban refugees from coming to the US for 120 days. It strips away funding for resettlement infrastructure, meaning the loss of experienced staff and the deterioration of vital services for refugees.
Help us keep the doors open.
- Who are refugees? According to the 1951 Geneva Convention on Refugees, a refugee is someone who “owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality, and is unable to or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country.” This definition does not include people who have fled economic hardship or are victims of natural disasters. These individuals are often deserving of humanitarian assistance, and may be admitted to the United States as immigrants, but they are not refugees.
- This administration's actions compound a human tragedy at this time of the greatest refugee crisis in human history, and leave far too many people in desperate circumstances, and far too many families separated. At World Relief, 70% of our refugee cases involved the reunification of families torn apart by war and violence. The action keeps families apart.
- Four months is an excessive time to verify or augment the already robust security and vetting processes in place for refugees entering the US. We call on the administration and the Department of Homeland Security to complete this process more quickly so that families can be reunited and we can show the compassion on which the United States has been built.
- A significant share of refugees admitted to the U.S. from the Middle East—including 35% admitted from Middle Eastern countries over the past decade—have been Christians, and these persecuted believers, some of whom are facing what the U.S. State Department has labeled as genocide, will be shut out under this new policy. Christians and religious minorities are already a much higher percentage in the refugee population, as many as 5 time the number, over the percentage in the general population from the countries affected by this ban. Furthermore, we fear this new policy could unintentionally fuel extremist sentiments against Christians and other religious minorities within these regions.
- The decision to restrict all entry of refugees and other immigrants from these particular regions contradicts the American tradition of welcoming families who come to the United States to start their lives again in safety and dignity. The American people—most of whom can trace their own families’ stories through a similar immigrant journey in search of freedom—are a hospitable people.
- As an evangelical Christian organization, biblical teachings are our top authority. The Scriptures are replete with God’s commands to his people to love, welcome, and seek justice for refugees and other immigrants. Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan—a man whom Jesus presents as the model of neighborly love when he provides assistance to a person in need of a different religious tradition—is our standard. This new announcement clashes with these biblical values, which are an important authority for many Americans.
- We are committed to praying for President Trump and his administration as they consider these and other vital decisions that will impact the lives of millions of vulnerable people, both within the United States and abroad.
- As we have done with the past six presidential administrations, World Relief is eager to work with the Trump Administration to ensure that the proud American tradition of resettling refugees from around the world continues. While governmental policy may change, our commitment to standing alongside the persecuted, displaced, and vulnerable remains firm.