‘Faith’ group exploring bringing refugees to Cape Cod and Nantucket
Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 22, 2016
My first thought when I saw this was, do they actually have cheap subsidized housing there, or are the well-off going to take them home with them?
I’m posting this although I doubt very much that Syrian Muslim refugees are going to be seeded into this expensive realestate in Massachusetts anytime soon. But, for others of you, this is how it begins—‘church’ groups, whose ‘leaders’ have no clue how the resettlement program works invite in a resettlement contractor.
By the way Senator Ted Kennedy created the refugee program in 1979 (Carter signed it into law in 1980). I previously joked and referred to Kennedy as ‘don’t bring them to Hyannis’ Kennedy. I guess he isn’t around to save his neighborhood.
From Cape Cod Times (Answered prayers):
In Vermont, the mayor of Rutland unveiled a plan last month to resettle 100 Syrian refugees who fled the onslaught of the Islamic State and are exiled in refugee camps in Jordan. If approved by the State Department and others, the resettlement would begin in October and gradually send Rutland more Syrian refugees than are currently living anywhere else in New England. [Yikes! Did you folks in Rutland know you would be the Syrian capital of New England joining Lewiston, Maine as the Somali capital!—ed]
Closer to home, Worcester is in the midst of an initiative that may prove to be a model for refugee resettlement. A coalition of agencies and organizations spearheaded by Ascentria Care Alliance, under a $457,000 grant from the Health Foundation of Central Massachusetts, has undertaken a pilot program — Partnership for Refugee Wellness — to coordinate support among participating organizations that include health care, job training, education, and legal assistance. Ascentria is the former Lutheran Social Services of New England. [If you live in the Worcester area, you need to follow what Ascentria is doing, we haven’t had time to write about it, but there is much in the news—ed]
Traditional resettlement practices and policies established in 1980 to serve refugees primarily from Southeast Asia and the former Soviet Union are outdated and fall short in serving more diverse needs of recent refugees from the Mideast, South Asia and Africa. A number of refugees struggle once here under the federal program’s funding that allows for an eight-month resettlement period, and focuses on employment and economic stability.
Perhaps it’s time for the Cape Cod Council of Churches and the Barnstable Interfaith Coalition to develop a similar partnership with Ascentria or the State Department.
Tom Ryan, a board member of the Council, said he has heard from some church leaders on the Cape and Nantucket about their hopes as congregations or as a network of congregations to receive refugees.
By the way, are there mosques on the Cape? Does anyone know?
An afterthought: Have they heard about the Tuberculosis in the refugee flow to America?
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