Midway through the 2018 fiscal year, which ends September 30, just 10,584 refugees have been resettled to the United States. By contrast, 39,098 refugees were welcomed to the U.S. in the first half of the 2017 fiscal year—even with the slowdown on admissions due to the Trump Administration’s refugee bans. This decline in refugee admissions represents a stark 73 percent year-over-year drop. The International Rescue Committee (IRC) projects that a series of excessive red-tape vetting and processing changes will result in no more than 23,000 refugees being resettled in FY18, barely achieving 50 percent of the ceiling.

There are over 1 million refugees awaiting resettlement by welcoming nations this year, the most vulnerable of the 22.5 million refugees worldwide. These are refugees whose safety cannot be secured in their countries of first refuge; over half of them are children.

Said Hans Van de Weerd, Vice President, US Programs, International Rescue Committee:

“Halfway through FY18, the U.S. is establishing a record on resettlement that runs counter to core American values of freedom and welcome and strategic interests abroad.

“Drastically diminished refugee arrivals have detrimental consequences for U.S. national security and foreign policy interests, including fueling the anti-American narratives of the very terrorist organizations we aim to defeat. The Trump Administration must change course in the second half of FY18 and meet its commitment to admit 45,000 refugees.”

The numbers—representing human lives—speak for themselves:

Shocking drop in March in admissions of those who assisted U.S. missions

U.S.-affiliated Iraqis (P-2s) left behind

99percent drop in Syrian refugee resettlement  

Promise broken to Central American children   

The Trump Administration may have turned its back on refugees, but communities across the country have not.

Despite low arrivals, the IRC witnesses firsthand, and on a daily basis, the strong desire to welcome refugees and support refugee resettlement in the communities where we work across the U.S. In FY17, the IRC saw a 97 percent increase in volunteer applications compared to the previous fiscal year. We continue to be moved by this call from everyday Americans to welcome and integrate refugees into their communities.  

The American people have made their support for refugee resettlement clear in their communities. Now, we are calling upon our partners and supporters to call their Members of Congress and demand that the Administration be held accountable to its promise to resettle all 45,000 refugees in FY18.  

It’s time to pressure the Administration to pick up the pace on refugee resettlement. Take action now.