Refugee Resettlement Watch

Archive for October 1st, 2009

US takes lion’s share of world’s refugees, costs US taxpayers over a $billion a year

Posted by Ann Corcoran on October 1, 2009

Your tax dollars:

As I said yesterday when I told you about the President’s report to Congress on the refugee program for FY2010, there would be lots more interesting information included in the report.

Note that on page 59, the US takes 75% of the world’s UNHCR-referred refugees!  The number doesn’t include others we have picked up through other means and does not include asylees.  After the US at 75% comes Canada (8%), Australia (7.8%), Sweden (2%), and New Zealand (1%).

Now check out the cost of the program on page 58.   The figure reported here, $891,800,000, does not include the taxpayer funding of programs relating to healthcare, subsidized housing, education, food stamps and so forth from local and state governments.

It looks to me that at minimum, it costs way over $10,000 a year per refugee.  And, now that the International Rescue Committee is reporting to us that only about 20% of refugees are finding work, the cost to care for more refugees will only go up.

See my post last month on refugee horrors in Houston:

For years, agencies across the country have used private funds, unpaid overtime and volunteers to patch together a system that before the recession was typically able to find jobs for more than 80 percent of refugees after six months. Those numbers are plummeting — to as low as 20 percent at one national agency, the  International Rescue Committee, which Bob Carey, its vice president of resettlement and migration policy, expects is more or less the situation at most. In some states, refugees are becoming homeless.

Flooding the welfare system?

Posted in Refugee Resettlement Program, Where to find information | 2 Comments »

Senate Dems vote down ID requirement for immigrant healthcare access

Posted by Ann Corcoran on October 1, 2009

From The Hill:

Senate Finance Committee Democrats rejected a proposed a requirement that immigrants prove their identity with photo identification when signing up for federal healthcare programs.

Finance Committee ranking member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said that current law and the healthcare bill under consideration are too lax and leave the door open to illegal immigrants defrauding the government using false or stolen identities to obtain benefits.

Grassley’s amendment was beaten back 10-13 on a party-line vote.

The bill, authored by committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), would require applicants to verify their names, places of birth and Social Security numbers. In addition, legal immigrants would have to wait five years, as under current law, after obtaining citizenship or legal residency to access federal healthcare benefits such as Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program or receive tax credits or purchase insurance through the exchange created by the legislation.

But the would not require them to show a photo ID, such as a drivers license. Without that requirement, the bill “remains dearly lacking when it comes to identification,” Grassley said. “Frankly, I’m very perplexed as to why anyone would oppose this amendment,” he said.

By the way, refugees do not have to wait 5 years to access welfare programs.

Posted in health issues, Refugee Resettlement Program | 3 Comments »

 
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