The IRC in Charlottesville hosted its first-ever phone-banking event as part of the United Way - Thomas Jefferson Area’s Day of Caring on September 26, 2018. Volunteers from Women United in Philanthropy spent 2 hours calling members of the House and Senate Judiciary Committee to urge them to do all in their power to increase the number of refugees that will be able to resettle in the United States in fiscal year 2019. Before making his Presidential Determination for refugee arrivals, the President must consult with the Judiciary Committee.
Historically, half of all refugees resettled have been welcomed by the United States. This past fiscal year, despite a ceiling of 45,000 people, fewer than 22,000 refugees arrived in the United States, the lowest number since the enactment of the Refugee Act of 1980, which established our current resettlement system. With additional cuts, changes, and roadblocks for asylum seekers and those with temporary protected status, our nation is slowly losing its identity as a global leader in humanitarian action and safe-haven for those fleeing fear and violence, and seeking hope and safety.
Since our phone-banking efforts, the Presidential Determination for refugee arrivals for fiscal year 2019, which began on October 1, 2018, has been set at 30,000, a record low. You can learn more and sign-up to receive take-action alerts here.