MFA Statement on 2018 Refugee Cap

“Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor…” MULTIFAITH ALLIANCE URGES REFUGEE ADMISSIONS Today’s Presidential Report to Congress indicating that the United States intends to cap refugee resettlement admissions at 45,000 for FY 18 is nearly a 60% cut from last year’s 110,000. This historic low at a time of historically high levels of displacement is “tragic, driven by fear rather than facts, politics rather than principle,” said Dr. Georgette Bennett, founder of the Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees (MFA), a project of the Tides Center. Any number fewer than 75,000 – itself a compromise – undermines the moral authority of the United States and unnecessarily exacerbates human suffering. “We are

Press Release: Shutting the Door on Freedom

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE SHUTTING THE DOOR ON FREEDOM Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees (MFA) Spokesperson, Amb. Rabbi David Saperstein Summons the Voices of the Interreligious Collective Washington, D.C. – September 27, 2017. With Lady Liberty watching, America appears to be turning her back and shutting the door on freedom and safety for tens of thousands of desperate refugees by lowering the admissions cap by 60%. All indications point to fewer than 50,000 refugees being permitted to enter our country in the next fiscal year. Members of Congress, the clergy and advocates stood today at the U.S. Capitol House Triangle to express outrage and urge opposition to these unconscionable cuts.

New Travel Ban Issued; Supreme Court Cancels Upcoming Arguments

The temporary travel ban precluding United States' admission to nationals from six Muslim-majority countries expired Sunday, September 24, 2017. In response, the Administration issued a new Executive Order affecting eight countries: Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen. In addition, Iraqis are subject to stricter scrutiny. Sudan is the only country from the original list no longer subject to the ban. Refugees are not affected by this new order: the existing ban will expire October 24, and it is anticipated the Administration will issue another Order before that time. Under the new "Proclamation," certain nationals from these countries will be permanently barre

Ambassador Rabbi David Saperstein Calls on Administration to Admit at Least 75,000 Refugees in 2018

Ambassador Rabbi David Saperstein, a member of MFA's Religious Leaders Circle, spoke yesterday on behalf of MFA on a press call to urge the Administration to set the refugee cap at 75,000 or more. Rabbi Saperstein's full comments can be read here. See below for the press release from Church World Service. High Level National Policy Experts, Refugees, and Religious Leaders Call on Trump to Raise Refugee Cap For a recording of the call, click here Washington, D.C. – In light of recent media reports that the U.S. refugee resettlement cap could sink below 50,000, and a Supreme Court ruling allowing the Trump administration to maintain its restrictive ban on refugees, policy experts, refugees, an

Call to Action: Congress Must Stand Up for Refugee Resettlement

Right now, the Administration is considering how many refugees we welcome to the United States in the next fiscal year. As we face the worst refugee crisis in global history with more than 22 million refugees worldwide, we should exercise our responsibility to protect the most vulnerable mothers, fathers, and children. The President will announce his decision by the end of this month, and he may seek to lower the refugee ceiling dramatically. It is a critical time to lift up our collective voice and stand with refugees in the United States and abroad. Congress needs to hear that their constituents welcome refugees and that we should resettle at least 75,000 refugees next year. CALL YOUR SENA

Update: Another Blow to the Travel Ban

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit handed the government a(nother) resounding defeat last week. In March 2017, the Administration issued its second Executive Order that would have banned all travelers from six Muslim-majority countries and "paused" refugee processing through October 2017. The legal merits of the Executive Order will not be addressed by the United States Supreme Court until October 10. However, in an interim ruling in June, the Supreme Court determined that the Executive Order’s ban could not apply to those refugees (and those travelers from the six identified countries) with "a credible claim of a bona fide relationship" with a person or entity in the U

MFA Applauds Settlement of Initial Travel Ban Lawsuit

In the chaos subsequent to the issuance of the Administration’s first Executive Order prohibiting travel from seven Muslim-majority countries, January 27, 2017, thousands of people were illegally detained at United States airports, some in handcuffs, or deported. Led by the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) – one of the Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees’ (MFA) Participating Organizations – an emergency legal stay was soon issued, prohibiting any further deportations. In March 2017, the lawsuit became moot, when a second Executive Order was issued. Notwithstanding, IRAP pressed its charges on behalf of all those who were illegally detained or deported initially. MFA fi

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