Guest post: Disillusioned Refugee Resettlement Worker Unloads
Posted by Ann Corcoran on November 16, 2015
Editor: For new readers, from time to time we post guest columns and comments from readers. All of those are posted in our category entitled, ‘Comments worth noting/guest posts.’ This (below) is very important information from someone who has worked for a refugee resettlement agency and seen firsthand the fraud being perpetrated on American taxpayers. It should serve as further confirmation that the US Refugee Admissions Program has gone seriously astray.
From Disillusioned (why I support Rep. Brian Babin’s bill). Prepare to be shocked:
Ann, I started to work five years ago in the refugee resettlement field to serve as a Christian witness through service and assistance. However, I quickly became dismayed as I saw the rampant, but undocumentable, fraud committed by Muslim Iraqi (and Cuban) refugees. While I am sure there must be fraud among other ethnic/religious people groups, Iraqi Muslims are the largest group resettled in my area. The amount of fraudulent income reporting (and non-reporting) by refugee clients is disturbing and fiscally unsustainable.
As your readers (should) know, the Resettlement Accountability National Security Act (H.R. 3314) places an immediate suspension on allowing immigrants into the United States under the refugee resettlement program, until the Government Accountability Office (GAO) completes a thorough examination of its costs on federal, state and local governments.
The following are some of the reasons I support this bill.
Average duration for which refugees receive benefits. – The refugees for whom I apply for state benefits (food stamps, temporary cash assistance, Medicaid) reapply for benefits every six months. The resettlement agency (VOLAG) can assist them with benefit renewal applications for up to five years! Many of these refugees, particularly from Iraq and Afghanistan, come into this country with cash, as evidenced by their purchase of new furniture, clothing, cars, and even homes, within a very short time of their arrival. This could not be done on strictly temporary cash assistance and usually, minimum wage jobs.
It is well known in the resettlement community and by the State of Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) Refugee Services that many recipients work for cash, receiving payment “under the table” and never report their actual income to the DCF when reapplying for government benefits. Many of these clients continue to receive food stamps even after they have been here up to and over five years!
The percentage of aliens who receive benefits is 100 percent for resettled refugees. In my job at the VOLAG, I apply for food stamps, temporary aid to needy families (families with children) or refugee cash assistance (singles or couples with no children), and Medicaid. These applications are automatic and are part of the required resettlement core services.
Every refugee who is aged 65 or older automatically receives assistance in applying for SSI benefits! This is automatic, whether the refugee has any presenting issues, other than age, or not! Some refugees under age 65 are turned down after medical reviews do not reveal mental or medical issues. However, refugees aged 65+ are automatically approved for SSI benefits. Social Security Spotlight on SSI Benefits for Aliens – 2015.
It is common knowledge among VOLAG coworkers and employees of the DCF that many refugees commit fraud regularly in their (lack of) income reporting. We are aware of this fraud but have no paper documentation or proof. Certain local small grocery stores, convenience stores, ethnic restaurants, Halal meat markets, bakeries, and imported foods stores hire these refugees, pay them under the table, and the refugees continue to receive benefits for which you and I pay.
Here are a couple of other abuses I have personally seen:
A Liberian refugee entered the country legally but managed to get his adult son brought over as a refugee minor to serve as his caretaker. The son has verbally admitted to me that he was over 21 years of age when he arrived in this country but his fraudulent documents showed him to be under 18!
A Cuban couple entered this country with documents which show them as married, however, they verbally stated to their caseworker that they are not married and the “wife” plans to move in with friends. She will continue to receive benefits while her friends support her as she has “no income.”
A Muslim Ethiopian-Somali refugee abruptly quit his job when he found he cannot stop work to pray five times a day!
An Arabic speaking “friend” “translates” the driver’s license test for Arabic speakers in northeast Florida. His “friends” pay over $250 for a driver’s license as he gives the correct answers to them and for them.
RRW readers simply must find the refugee resettlement and immigration events in your city and state and SHOW UP! You need to know what is going on in your area. You need to “push back” and demand answers about the impact this is having on your neighborhoods, local schools, HUD housing, slum lorded apartment complexes, and your local, state and federal government expenses.
Yes, I know and love many good hearted, honest, hardworking immigrants and refugees. From my experiences, most of these come from the persecuted Christian Burmese, Bhutanese, Congolese and Sudanese populations. I have “gone to bat” for them as I’ve tutored in English, taken children to school, doctor appointments, church activities.
I encourage you to volunteer at your local VOLAG and, if you are a Christian, share the love of God in Jesus Christ with them. Whether you are a Christian or not, volunteer to help them assimilate into a free nation built upon Judeo-Christian worldview and values for the sake of your own children and grandchildren!
Ann Corcoran has done an Herculean job of researching and documenting information for you. Burn up her website finding out what is happening in your area. Use these links to do some research on your own:
Catholic Legal Immigration Network – https://cliniclegal.org/affiliates/directory
Immigration Advocates (Resources for nonprofit advocates, organizers and service providers.) http://www.immigrationadvocates.org/nonprofit/
Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service – http://lirs.org/
US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants – http://www.refugees.org/
US State Dept. Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration – http://www.state.gov/j/prm/
WORLD RELIEF – https://worldrelief.org/us-offices
YOUR STATE – Refugee Task Force
Endnote: Besides support for Rep. Brian Babin’s bill (which I am told now has 50 co-sponsors), everyone must begin, starting today, to call your Member of Congress, your US Senators and the leadership and demand that they stop the funding for the Refugee Admissions Program for FY2016 as Congress will be debating funding for the entire government in advance of a December 11th deadline. See my post here for more information.
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