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New research conducted by the International Rescue Committee and ABODO reveal which U.S. states are most welcoming toward refugees

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  • Research analyzed sentiments toward refugees on Twitter, finding many Americans are sympathetic to plight of refugees and want to help
  • The states with the least positive sentiments towards refugees were Alaska, Arkansas, Mississippi, New Mexico and Wyoming
  • The states exhibiting the most positive sentiments toward refugees were identified as Kansas, Maine, New Hampshire, Utah and Washington
  • The findings from this research indicate that Americans across the country are aware of and engaged in the conversation around the refugee crisis

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) and the apartment search site ABODO have released new research today revealing which U.S. states are most welcoming toward refugees, based on sentiments expressed on Twitter.

Released at the conclusion of both the Republican and Democratic national conventions, these new findings indicate that Americans are more welcoming towards refugees than certain political fear mongering would suggest. Moreover, the research finds that positive sentiment is not confined to any one region in the United States, but rather is expressed throughout the country.

“Now that we know officially who our two candidates are for president, it is important that both know where Americans stand when it comes to their views on refugees,” said Jennifer Sime, IRC’s Senior Vice President of US Programs. “America has a proud history of protecting, providing refuge for, and welcoming the world’s most vulnerable, and this new research overwhelmingly reinforces and supports that tradition.”

The five states exhibiting the most positive sentiments toward refugees were identified as Washington, Maine, Utah, Kansas and New Hampshire. The states with the least positive sentiments toward refugees were Mississippi, Arkansas, Wyoming, New Mexico and Alaska; however, it is important to note that no state earned a negative score, signaling support for refugees is strong even in those states with lower scores.

About the research, ABODO’s Sr. Communications Manager Sam Radbil said, “The United States has provided relief for millions who have been forced to leave their homes in war-torn countries. We are extremely proud to have conducted, in conjunction with the IRC, new research that shows our country is open to welcoming those in need. We believe that people throughout America can and will benefit from accepting refugees into their cities and neighborhoods.”

The research analyzed dialogue on Twitter, including hashtags such as #RefugeesWelcome and #OpenBorders, to reveal positive and negative sentiments occurring at the state level.

Click here to access the full report.

About the IRC

The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises, helping to restore health, safety, education, economic wellbeing, and power to people devastated by conflict and disaster. Founded in 1933 at the call of Albert Einstein, the IRC is at work in over 40 countries and 29 U.S. cities helping people to survive, reclaim control of their future and strengthen their communities. Learn more at www.rescue.org and follow the IRC on Twitter & Facebook.