Refugee Resettlement Watch

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    Ann Corcoran
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Archive for the ‘Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input’ Category

What does the Refugee Admissions timeline look like for the remainder of 2017 and in to 2018?

Posted by Ann Corcoran on March 8, 2017

And, what more can President Donald Trump do?

If today is the first day you ever began to try to understand the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program, I’m going to walk you through from where we are.

Presumably you are here because you heard that President Donald Trump announced a 120-day moratorium on the USRAP beginning next Thursday (March 16th).  And, let’s assume that activist groups will be unable to stop it in the courts, see here.

LOL! This is going to be long! Serious students of the USRAP, continue reading…..

We will start our timeline by explaining that planning for the upcoming fiscal year (FY2018) is happening now over the next few months and culminates in September….

In September, the President submits a “determination” to Congress with the number of refugees that could be admitted (and regions from which they will come) in the upcoming fiscal year.  Right now we are in FY2017 which began on October 1, 2016 and runs to September 30, 2017.  The number he chooses is a CEILING, it is not a target!

President Obama in his last months in office set the CEILING at 110,000 for the year FY2017 (most of a year in which he would not be in office). It grates me to see stories like this from a Nebraska newspaper that says Trump is bringing in less than half of what Obama brought in!  Obama had never set a CEILING that high in his previous seven years! In his highest year (2016) he brought in just short of 85,000.

Congress’ only role is to “consult.”  I have followed the USRAP since 2007 and up until 2 years ago, I was not aware of any interest by Congress (House or Senate) to do anything. Perhaps there was “consultation” behind the scenes.  Early on I asked my Congressman to help me attend a “consultation,” but I was told the public could not attend. I suspected it was because there was nothing much to attend!

The “determination” is sent to the House and Senate Judiciary Committees and someone from the US State Department goes to The Hill with the letter and report prepared by the Department of State (you can see last year’s here).

The Refugee Act of 1980 does mention Congressional hearings on the “determination,” and to his credit, Senator Jeff Sessions held two very good hearings in 2015 and 2016.

I shouldn’t have said “only role” for Congress is consultation because they do hold the ultimate card—funding! The USRAP could be seriously curtailed through the Appropriations process (something I have discussed at length in my tag ‘Where is Congress‘).  Trump could control the program through his budget too!

And, I am going to argue below that Congress, if it had the guts, could reform the whole program.

Department of State Public hearings were a sham!

In preparation for the ‘determination,’ the US Department of State holds (held!) a ‘hearing’ of sorts to supposedly gather information from interested parties about how many and which ethnic groups we should admit in the upcoming fiscal year. That ‘hearing’ happens (happened!) usually in May.

However, during my years, I’ve watched what was a stacked hearing (dominated by refugee resettlement contractors) to begin with become a nothing-hearing by last year.

The first year I attended the meeting/hearing was fairly large—maybe 100 people in a room in Northern Virginia.  It was a parade of those who were being paid to resettle refugees before a panel that included bureaucrats from the Dept. of State, ORR (in Health and Human Services) and USCIS. They all asked for more refugees and more ethnic groups (notably the Rohingya of Burma/Bangladesh).

After that year, readers of RRW began sending in testimony and more of us with concerns who lived locally attended, until 2014 when the meeting was tiny, held in the US State Dept. with security screening, and was dominated by those of us with problems with the program.  Most of the contractors mailed in their testimony!

Here is the testimony I sent (or delivered in person) each year.

They thumbed their noses at the citizens with concerns!

And, finally, in 2015 there was no public hearing at all! Why? I am sure it is because they didn’t like what they were hearing! They only took written testimony that was not available to the public!

Here is what I said last May:

If you would like to see what some of your fellow critics of the program said in the past, go here, here and here (when you click each of these, scroll down for all the posts in the category). These are our archives for any discussion of hearing years 2012 (for FY13), 2013 (for FY14), and 2014 (for FY15).  The only reason we obtained any of that testimony is that some of you sent it to us and we attended the hearings in person and were given the testimony.

That testimony is not made public because secrecy has always been the watchword of the program!

I doubt that any Member of Congress or Senator has ever attempted to make that testimony public and I’d bet a million bucks (if I had it!) that no Members/Senators have ever asked for that testimony! Shameful!

Hold field hearings!

If Donald Trump’s Administration is serious about reforming the USRAP (and not just temporarily reducing the numbers), his DOS should hold field hearings in refugee overloaded cities!

Any Member of Congress or US Senator could do the same!  (I can help guide anyone who wants to hold such hearings to the troubled communities.)

Right now Secretary of State Rex Tillerson must depend on career State Department officials like Henshaw who we presume likes the USRAP the way it had operated for decades.

Right now you can assume that any planning for FY18 is being done by career bureaucrats and an acting Asst. Secretary of State (Henshaw here).   The Trump team has apparently not selected an Asst. Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration, an appointment that requires Senate approval.

Of course right now, I suspect the careers are all in disarray and figuring out how to get the last refugees in to the US before the moratorium that begins on the 16th.

This morning we are at 37,425 admitted so far (again Trump’s CEILING is 50,000).  Trump has no legal obligation to reach the CEILING.

Will there be hearings in May?  Who knows!

But….

Planning for the annual determination (for FY18) will begin in your local community (but you won’t know it!) soon.

The local subcontractors (of the nine major contractors) will, in late spring/early summer, be preparing those very secretive documents called R & P Abstracts.  To learn what they are click here for our complete archive on ABSTRACTS.

Those documents list what refugees your community could support (numbers and ethnic groups).  It will give the amenities your town has available—medical care, housing, jobs, education system, etc—for refugees!  It is a document we maintain should be available to you—local taxpayers—BEFORE it goes to Washington!

The R & P Abstracts go to the US State Department and are used to determine how much money will be spent for refugees and will be used to make the President’s “determination” to be sent to Congress in September.

Stakeholder meetings!

The bureaucrats of the refugee industry at the DOS and the ORR will tell the Trump people that there is public input, that they hold quarterly “stakeholder” meetings, and the Trump people will not know what a sham this is.

They will trot out their ‘stakeholder’ meetings as an example (here is one post on those) of how transparent they are with the communities they are targeting.  But, you need to know that unless you are watching closely and demanding public admission to those meetings, they are dominated by the subcontractors (list here), and various branches of local government.  Elected officials who oppose more resettlement will be excluded. And, taxpaying citizens in most places are not considered ‘stakeholders’ and have no role in the preparation of the planning documents.

Back to the 120-day Moratorium which puts us into mid-July, leaving only half of July, August and September to reach the 50,000 CEILING.

This is what John Podesta’s Center for American Progress was tweeting out yesterday to show why the USRAP might in fact be dead for the entire fiscal year.

Again, today we are already at 37,425.

Depending on who is chosen for Asst. Sec. for PRM and for the Director of the ORR (in Health and Human Services), they may or may not be able to gear-up for a huge number of refugees because the process abroad is pretty time-consuming.

The contractors’ fears (and the Open Border advocates like CAP at left) are that the flow cannot get moving with only 2 and 1/2 months left in the fiscal year.

If you have made it this far through this long post, the point I am getting to is this: What will Donald Trump do for FY2018 which is rapidly approaching?

He can set the CEILING low (we don’t consider 50,000 low! See here.).  He can make regulatory changes to make the program more transparent and involve state and local governments in the process.

But, will he pressure Congress to reform the law because only changing the law will assure that in 4 or 8 years we don’t go back to the same old flawed system!

Pens and phones only last so long as the particular President is in power! If the USRAP is not reformed legislatively (I would get rid of the whole VOLAG system of paid refugee contractors) then there is no real reform.

Right now, during a Trump presidency, is the only opportunity we will probably ever have to rein-in and reform the out-of-control Refugee Admissions Program. By 2018 everyone will be looking to the next election and nothing will get done!

Endnote:  If you missed it, see my post yesterday where I suggested that if you live in a state where state legislators are having problems with the program, you must convince them to call Sec. of State Tillerson and ask to meet him and tell him the problems at the state level!

They should go in with one message: Yes, do as much regulatory reform as possible, but Trump must pressure Congress to repeal and re-write the law (assuming some refugee program will be needed).

Posted in Changing the way we live, Colonization, Community destabilization, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input, Trump Watch! | Tagged: , , , , , | 10 Comments »

Testimony to the US State Department from Earl in Tennessee

Posted by Ann Corcoran on June 3, 2016

Editor: Here comes another one! We haven’t seen them all yet!  I am still sorting my e-mail in search of the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

So far no sign that the State Department is re-opening the comment period.  Have any of you seen a new notice?

From Earl who obviously spent a great deal of time researching:

Testimony re: 2017 Refugee Resettlement Program

The Syrian refugee situation is merely “the tip of the iceberg” – a tiny part of the real issue. The “iceberg,” itself is the Federal Refugee Resettlement Program (RRP). The RRP was established by legislation in 1980, and so is far older than the Syrian situation, and the Fedral Government has illegally and dramatically expanded the program’s hegemony since then.

There is so much seriously wrong with the current form of the RRP that it would take a book to cover it all. Some of its major critical problems (drastically condensed) include:

1. The RRP is unconstitutional.

a. It forces states to fund state programs resulting from a Federal program without their agreement – a violation of states’ rights that the U. S. Supreme Court has already ruled unconstitutional.

b. It gives over a billion dollars a year to nine commercial contractors (called VOLAGS – “Voluntary Agency”) most of which are religious organizations. What this means is that the Federal Government is taking taxes from all Americans, and donating them to religious groups selected by the government. The Federal Government has no right to select which religious charities anyone has to support, but that’s exactly what’s happening. The Constitution clearly requires separation of church and state; a requirement grossly ignored by the RRP.

c. There is no part of the Constitution’s “enumerated powers” which compels or even allows the Federal Government to finance, arrange, or promote immigration from anywhere.


2.  The RRP is illegal.

The 1980 RRP legislation clearly and narrowly defined who can be considered a refugee for purposes of the program – people who can prove they have or are subject to persecution because of their political views or because of membership in a racial, ethnic, religious, or social group.

The vast majority of refugees seeking asylum in the U. S. are economic (“seeking a better life”) refugees, or are fleeing war zones – neither condition qualifies them for refugee status.

Therefore, the RRP is violating its own establishing legislation because Congress has ignored the legal definition of “refugee.”

3. The RRP is dangerous.

a. On October 8, 2015, FBI Director James Comey testified before Congress that the FBI cannot guarantee Islamic terrorists won’t get into the US in the Syrian flow that is about to start. On October 21, 2015, Director Comey informed the House Homeland Security Committee that it is impossible to screen Syrian refugees entering the U. S.

b. During a speech at the National Defense University, U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul, head of the House Homeland Security Committee, reported that intelligence officials have revealed that it’s no longer just a threat, but an actual occurrence – ISIS terrorists have tried to use the refugee program to enter the United States.

c. Membership in a U. S. – registered terrorist group is not a bar to entry through the RRP as long as the refugee was not thought to be a “direct participant” in “terrorist” activity. What an absurd standard!

d. Approximately 95% of U. S. – bound refugees are selected by the U. N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) or were relatives of U. N. – picked refugees. The UNHCR signed a Cooperation Agreement with the Organization for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in 1988, according to an OIC statement. The OIC has been described as the new Islamic Caliphate (world-wide government), although ISIS has also laid claim to that title.What kinds of refugees do you think the OIC pressures the UNHCR to select?

e. Refugees are not tested for many diseases, such as HIV, and they also constitute approximately half of the TB cases in America.

f. If you look at news photos of the hoards of refugees flooding Europe, you’ll be struck by the fact that 95% of them are men in the specific age bracket from which most terrorists are drawn. They don’t look anything like the warm, friendly-looking refugee families that our media and the Federal Government portray as “typical.” Once the fickle media spotlight is off the refugee situation, refugees coming here are almost certain to reflect the same young-male Muslim demographic Europe is struggling with – a dangerous demographic.

g. The Obama administration has repeatedly bragged about the extensive investigative process used for refugees – supposedly taking from 12 to 18 months. Recently, the process has been shortened to three months, proving that the process is merely a political ploy to promote acceptance of dangerous refugees by a gullible public.

4. The RRP is incredibly expensive.

a. The Federal Government spends about 1.2 billion dollars a year just to bring refugees to the U. S. It pays the “VOLAGS” another approximately 1 billion dollars a year to handle the distribution of refugees to the states. These funds could assist 500 times as many refugees if safe havens were established in refugees’ own or nearby countries. Why do you suppose that wealthy Arab oil-producing countries refuse to accept any refugees whatsoever?

b. State and Federal welfare programs are available to refugees the same as to citizens. Refugees qualify for at least 14 welfare programs, the cost of which is never counted or revealed. The total program cost is estimated to be 10 to 20 billion dollars a year when welfare is included, and refugees use welfare at much higher rates than citizens – four times higher for SSI, for example. The VOLAGS grossly under-report welfare costs becausethey don’t actually track them – they estimate them with absurd assumptions that are intended to conceal the huge amounts – much of which comes out of state budgets.

c. The RRP is laced with fraud and corruption at all levels, as is true for many, if not all, U. N. enterprises. U.N. personnel often sell access to the program, and once here, refugees make false claims of family relationships in order to bring other “refugees” into the program. In effect, the RRP is a “stick in the spokes” of U. S. foreign policy, because other countries can refuse refugees, knowing that the U. S. will probably take them.

d. Our country and states are hobbled by ancient, deteriorating infrastructure, bloated social services, underfunded school systems, and inadequate fire and police protection. State and Federal agencies are regularly asked to cut spending. Eliminating the RRP could free funds desperately needed for more worthy and delayed projects.

5. The RRP can destroy our communities.

a. Few Middle-Eastern refugees/immigrants “assimilate” into their host communities. Paul Harpole, mayor of Amarillo, Texas, says that, “…it’s a huge disservice to bring in refugees that we’re not able to handle. We create small ghettos…. A group of Somalis came in to say they had elected a mayor of their community…. Then another faction claimed they had their own leader. We come to find out that rival tribes – slaves and masters – were being settled together.” There are now about 22 different languages spoken in the Amarillo schools by 660 refugee kids who don’t speak English, and the U. S. Department of Education says they have to be at grade level within one year. Many of these third-world kids don’t even know how to use a bathroom. Plus, the federal Government pays schools only $100 per refugee student per year.

b. Refugees will work for minimum wage, and, so, take jobs from Americans. In inflation-adjusted dollars, the meat-packing industry used to pay about $20/hour to employees. Now, it’s closer to $10/hour, on average, because of the refugees. The meat-packing industry is a major lobbying group promoting higher refugee numbers, making campaign contributions all over the country.

The Refugee Resettlement Program must be rescinded.

It is immoral, unethical, and unconstitutional for the Federal Government to bring Muslim refugees to the United States.

 

This is the twentieth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.

Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

Don’t forget!  If you sent testimony to the State Department, be sure to send it to all of your elected officials and ask that they look into the program and give you a response (it is not too late to send it!). When corresponding with elected officials always ask a question and try to force them to respond to you.

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

Testimony to the US State Department from Laurel in Illinois

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 30, 2016

Editor: Here comes another one! I am still sorting my e-mail in search of the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

So far no sign that the State Department is re-opening the comment period.  Have any of you seen a new notice?

From Laurel who is most concerned about the impact on her local school system (including costs!) with the sudden arrival of large numbers of refugee children in need of special help.

Ms. Anne C. Richard U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration

Dear Ms. Richard:

The refugee resettlement program is a secretive, expensive and potentially dangerous program that needs to be immediately halted, and probably scrapped. What once began as a wellintentioned means to help asylees has now evolved into a complex “people importing” business with many players, most of all the VOLAGS, which are essentially government agencies disguised as charities. A good example is Lutheran Immigration and Social Services, which professes to be “faith based” but in reality has no affiliation to any church (Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, 2015).

“We [LCMS] are not connected to the refugee work of Lutheran World Relief at this time, and our relationship with, and support for, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services is limited. LIRS is not a Synod organization, not a Recognized Service Organization and is not officially tied to any church body” (Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, 2015).

Unfortunately, the people most directly impacted by “importing” refugees – i.e. local schools, state taxpayers, community residents, medical facilities, social service agencies – are not involved when refugees are placed, yet they are stuck with the costs and problems. A good example is Evanston, Illinois where school districts 65 and 202 have seen a sudden surge of refugee students. (Gavin, 2015). Administrators were not informed.

“Dr. Witherspoon added, ‘I don’t have a real handle on why we’re seeing such a big increase in Evanston.’ He added he would be interested to see if this was a one-time increase, or if it is going to continue” (Gavin, 2015).

Student refugees often have learning and language issues and require the hiring of additional staff.

“Many of the children have not had any formal education, so it is unclear what grade they should be placed in. Language is a barrier, as most of the refugee students speak French, Arabic, Turkish or Swahili. They also require vaccinations and medical care…Evanston Township High School has hired staff to address the needs of these children (Gavin, 2015).

Refugees place enormous costs on the host communities. In September 2015, Center for Immigration Studies released a study estimating that each Middle Eastern refugee costs taxpayers almost $65,000 for the first five years (Zeigler & Camarota, 2015). A more recent study published this month finds that “[the] average immigrant household consumes 33 percent more cash welfare, 57 percent more food assistance, and 44 percent more Medicaid dollars than the average native household (Richwine, 2016).

Illinois (my state) ranks as one of the highest tax states in the nation (Kiernan, 2016). In some cases, property taxes equal or exceed the owner’s mortgage payment. Since refugees impose high costs to state and local residents, why are communities not given the option to say “no?” This amounts to taxation without representation.

The refugee resettlement program has become a “cash cow” to be milked by many players. It is now a $1 billion industry that operates without any oversight or regard for the taxpayers who are funding it. The United States cannot afford to import hundreds of thousands of individuals who will be a net drain on our resources.

Works Cited

Gavin, L. (2015, November 4). Refugees Arrive at School Districts 65 and 202. Retrieved March 4, 2016, from Evanston Roundtable: http://evanstonroundtable.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=11143&SectionID=16&SubSectio nID=27&S=1

Kiernan, J. A. (2016, April 30). 2016’s States with the Highest & Lowest Tax Rates. Retrieved May 18, 2016, from WalletHub: https://wallethub.com/edu/best-worst-states-to-be-a-taxpayer/2416/

Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. (2015). Refugee – FAQ. Retrieved October 13, 2015, from Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod: http://www.lcms.org/Document.fdoc?src=lcm&id=3766

Richwine, J. (2016, May). The Cost of Welfare Use By Immigrant and Native Households. Retrieved May 18, 2016, from Center for Immigration Studies: http://cis.org/Cost-Welfare-Immigrant-NativeHouseholds

Zeigler, K., & Camarota, S. A. (2015, September). The High Cost of Resettling Middle Eastern Refugees. Retrieved May 18, 2016, from Center for Immigration Studies: http://cis.org/High-Cost-ofResettling-Middle-Eastern-Refugees

 

This is the nineteenth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.  Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies, a few a day, until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

 

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

Testimony to the US State Department from John in Indiana

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 29, 2016

Editor: Yes! I know there are many more! I am still sorting my e-mail in search of the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

From John:

Ms. Anne Richard
Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration
US State Department
Washington, DC

RE: FR 2016-09267

Dear Ms. Richard:

I have to believe that you do not realize the havoc you are creating across our great nation, or certainly you would take steps to alleviate it.

Your actions are resulting in overcrowded schools with resources stretched beyond the breaking point.

Your actions are causing communities to go nearly bankrupt because their resources are not sufficient to manage the multiple problems and needs of these new people.

Your actions are creating danger in the communities because these new people cannot obtain substantial work and hence are resorting to criminal activities.

Your actions are resulting in increases in unemployment among American workers because these new people are forced by necessity to work for substandard wages when they can find jobs.

Your actions are allowing the growing group of Islamic people to become even larger with the possible potential for Shari’ah to be instituted in parts of our country, a system of life that is totally at odds with our nation of freedom.

I could go on and on but I am sure that you are receiving many comments from other concerned citizens and are becoming aware of what we are worried about. We are simply not able to absorb the masses of people you are trying to bring into our communities. We have plenty of problems in our cities and towns and our money and talents should be directed to them.

Let the other countries deal with their problems and let us deal with ours. We are not, and should not be, the savior of all nations. If America is to survive as a sovereign country this massive and ill-advised immigration program must stop.

Yours with worry and concern,

This is the eighteenth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.  Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies, a few a day, until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: | 5 Comments »

Testimony to US State Department from Adrienne in California

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 29, 2016

Editor: Yes! I am still combing through my hundreds of e-mails to find the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

It is not selfish to put America First!

To PRM from Adrienne,

States should have final control over resettlement activities within their state borders. Until there is evaluation of and FULL DISCLOSURE of the costs and other impacts associated with resettling the thousands of refugees, I am strongly opposed to continuing the Refugee Admissions Program for 2017. The program should be suspended or put on hold until the costs and impacts have been revealed to the American public.

Schools are overburdened, with some now having 75 different languages. The education of our children will be impacted as teachers try to address the additional language, learning and emotional difficulties inherent in refugee children.

San Bernardino killer

There was a lot of information that should have been a red flag to those “vetting” the San Bernardino killer.

In addition to the burdens to the American people in more ways than just increased taxes, fewer jobs, and less care for our Veterans and Seniors, there is a danger in not properly vetting people from areas where there is a predominant ideology to destroy those who do not believe as they do.

I live not far from San Bernardino, where this ideology was espoused by terrorists who killed people who had just given him and his wife a baby shower! Isn’t this much like the good will extended to refugees as they settle in other towns? There was evidence from the wife’s Facebook page that she had pledged allegiance to ISIS.

Certainly we need to take the time to ensure that each individual refugee has a clean past. The vetting process MUST NOT be shortened to anything less than the 18-24 month standard. The responsibility to protect American citizens falls upon your department. Please do not let us down.

It is not selfish to put America first, because only when we are great can we lend a helping hand to those in need.

This is the seventeenth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.  Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies, a few a day, until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

P.S. I should have mentioned it, but I have been adding photos and other images just to jazz up the plain text, I hope you all don’t mind!

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Testimony to the US State Department from Paul in Montana

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 24, 2016

Editor: I am still combing through my hundreds of e-mails to find the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

From Paul who says when the federal government demonstrates such incompetence in so many areas, how could we expect any competent fix for the complicated UN/US State Department Refugee Admissions Program:

To Whom It Should Concern:

The United States exists to benefit our own citizens, and public policy should be made with that concept foremost in mind, not based upon uninformed sentiment and emotion. In the current instance, this means ending the refugee resettlement program, for many irrefutable reasons.

First, going back decades and even ignoring the obvious concerns about terrorists embedded in “refugee” influxes, U.S. asylum programs have been fraud-ridden (which is the reason that quotation marks should usually enclose the word “refugee”). A notable example was the discovery in 2008, via DNA testing, that many “refugee” “families” from Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda, Guinea, and Ghana weren’t families at all, just unrelated people who’d spotted an opportunity to move to the U.S.

Then there’s the matter of costs. In the experience of many small cities around the country (e.g. Amarillo, Texas; Springfield, Massachusetts; Manchester, New Hampshire), the resulting local impacts can be daunting and onerous. After a spell, they find their schools and social-services agencies begging for relief from the influx.

Dinka dictionary

A Dinka dictionary is not adequate. Feds expected Manchester, NH school system to provide a Dinka interpreter when a student from S. Sudan acted up in high school there. Local taxpayers must foot the bill!

Consider, for example, the ordeal of Lynn, Massachusetts, a city of 90,000 just north of Boston with a school district serving 15,000 students. Lynn’s schools took in about 500 students from Central America between 2011 and 2014. One might think such an increase in school population of “only” 3.5 percent wouldn’t be a big deal, but that’s not how it’s worked out for the city.

As Lynn’s Mayor Judith Kennedy told an audience at the National Press Club in August 2014, her health department had to curtail inspection services to afford the surge in immunizations needed by the schools’ new arrivals. She had to end an effective, gang-suppressing community-policing program to free up resources for the schools. With many of the arrivals illiterate in any language, the schools needed many more classroom aides along with interpreters. (The school district’s website broadcasts the availability of translation services in Arabic, Creole, Khmer and Spanish.) Altogether, Mayor Kennedy had to shrink every other department’s 2015 budget by 2 to 5 percent from its 2014 level to accommodate a 9.3 percent increase in school funding.

(Yes, Lynn’s influx includes—besides “refugees”—illegal aliens and ordinary immigrants, but all three categories of arrivals from third-world countries impose comparable burdens on taxpayers.)

Such costs for translators and interpreters are an unfunded mandate the national government levies on states and localities, applicable to court proceedings, too. The requirement is open-ended. For example, in 2014 Manchester, New Hampshire, got in trouble with federal bureaucrats in a school-expulsion case by failing to provide an interpreter for Dinka, the language of South Sudan.

Dinka!!!

Finally, beyond the specific matter of refugee resettlement, our national government demonstrates seemingly universal incompetence, from Transportation Security Administration airport screeners’ 95 percent failure rate at intercepting test contraband to the slack immigration vetting of San Bernardino shooter Tashfeen Malik to the Environmental Protection Agency’s flooding Colorado’s Animas River with orange, toxic mine waste. So who believes that, with hard-to-investigate “refugees,” suddenly the feds will perform?

In short, it’s time to end it, not try to mend it, as mending anything complicated is manifestly beyond the capabilities of the ever more feckless federal bureaucracy.

This is the sixteenth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.  Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies, a few a day, until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

P.S. I should have mentioned it, but I have been adding photos and other images just to jazz up the plain text, I hope you all don’t mind!

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: | 6 Comments »

Testimony to the US State Department from Deborah in California

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 23, 2016

Editor: I am still combing through my hundreds of e-mails to find the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

where do refugee settle

Most go to California and Texas.

From Deborah who raises the TB issue here (before we learned this shocking news yesterday):

To Anne .C .Richard
UN/US State Dept Refugee Admissions Program

As an American citizen who immigrated to this country well over ten years ago I am writing to voice my opinion on the influx of refugees being brought to the U.S. by your dept and this administration. I realize this country has a long standing precedent for allowing immigrants as I was one myself but by ignoring the set procedures in order to bring more in you are risking the safety of every American already here. You must resist the urge to accommodate the will of the current administration and look to the future and the outcome of rushing these immigrants through without proper vetting.

Without screening these refugees for TB, as well as other communicable diseases, ( which every legal immigrant has to do) you risk further strain on our already weakened health care system. Legal immigrants must agree to not be a burden on the welfare system which does not apply to these refugees. How is that possibly fair, to penalize those that want to willingly come to this country, verses those that will not assimilate and expect to be financially cared for?

Even in my community I can see the strain this overworked system is having on the lives of Americans and it breaks my heart. I cannot understand how changing the length of the vetting process from 18 months to 3 months is either beneficial or practical especially in light of the current global upheavals both in the United States and abroad.

As a sovereign nation with a long history of charity for our global brothers and sisters I strongly request that the influx of unvetted refugees be reverted back to the original 18 month timeline with emphasis on reducing the volume and increasing the scrutiny. We as a nation are currently going through extreme political changes. It is important to note that this current administration will soon be surrendering the reigns to a new leader and since the voice of the people have loudly and universally rejected continuing the status quo I again ask that you take that fact into consideration when setting refugee admission guidelines for the 2017 year.

This is the fifteenth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.  Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies, a few a day, until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

P.S. I should have mentioned it, but I have been adding photos and other images just to jazz up the plain text, I hope you all don’t mind!

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

Testimony to the US State Department from Coya in Maryland

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 22, 2016

Editor: I am still combing through my hundreds of e-mails to find the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

Theodore_Roosevelt_by_John_Singer_Sargent,_1903

Here is reader Coya quoting Teddy Roosevelt….

To the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration Anne C. Richard

Originally, the Refugee act was to provide qualified refugees a pathway to permanent residence as persons of special humanitarian concern to the United States. The key word is qualified. We cannot properly vet the refugees. We should not place all American citizens at risk.

Prior to the passage of the Refugee Act, a refugee in the United States had to wait two years to apply for adjustment of status. The refugee also had to show that he or she had fled (or stayed away from) any communist-dominated country or country within the Middle East and was unwilling or unable to return due to fear of persecution. This must be adhered to in the strictest sense.

The influx of Syrian refugees would change the voting demographics in the US and to convert America into an Islamic nation.

I whole heartedly agree with President Teddy Roosevelt when he said:

“In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person’s becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American…There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn’t an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag… We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language… and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.”
Theodore Roosevelt 1907

Any other means of bringing masses of people to America is an invasion and misuse of the Refugee Act of 1980 and could be considered an act of treason.

This is the fourteenth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.  Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies, a few a day, until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

Testimony to the US State Department from Sue in Kansas

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 22, 2016

Editor: I am still combing through my hundreds of e-mails to find the testimony you sent to the US State Department in response to the DOS request for public comment on the “size and scope” of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program for FY2017.

The day before the deadline for submission of testimony I noticed (maybe you were all ahead of me and noticed!) that the dates were wrong in the Federal Register.  I happened to see a comment sent by lawyers to the DOS asking that the comment period be re-opened because citizens, who might like to have testified, didn’t think the notice was for a comment period this year, but for last year.   See here.

Sam Brownback 2

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback withdrew the state of Kansas from the federal refugee program last month, however, that effectively gives the job of resettlement over to a non-profit group in the state with no elected official responsibility. It was a good first step, but without step 2 (filing a states’ rights lawsuit), it is essentially meaningless. https://refugeeresettlementwatch.wordpress.com/2016/05/03/big-news-kansas-watching-tennessee-on-refugee-lawsuit-but-bigger-still-so-is-texas/

From Sue:

FR Doc 2016-09267

FY 2016 U.S. Refugee Admissions Program

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration

Anne C. Richard

The U.S. Refugee Admission Program is out of control. It wreaks havoc on local communities – economically, socially and culturally. The program favors Islamic peoples and others that have no respect for our customs, laws or citizens.

We the people; we the taxpayers are funding these programs. It is our hard earned money that is used to bring in thousands of immigrants at a time when our country’s economy is at a breaking point. The immigrants, not Americans, are given preferential treatment at every turn – housing, education, medical assistance, food and employment.

There are factions of these groups of people that are violent – towards each other and everyone else. Domestic abuse is not uncommon and that spill out into our communities in the form of rapes and murders against women and children. Strict and time consuming protocols tie the hands of our police on all the federal, state and local levels. Criminals go unpunished. If they are deported, they make their way back into our country because the system is broken.

Each and every immigrant needs to be thoroughly vetted before being allowed into our country. The program, as it is now, is run more like a cattle business. Immigrants are treated like cash cows by the local contractors which have made a business of raking in federal dollars for their non-profit programs. This is detrimental to many immigrants as well as to the local communities. The immigrants receive a crash course in how to survive in America and then are cast out into the community. Is it no wonder that some will turn to theft, drugs and other crime to try and survive?

Professional immigrants are also given preferential treatment. Foreign doctors, scientists and other professionals are recruited into hospitals, research institutions and business. They can bypass the strict requirements our own college students must abide by. How can American students fairly compete within this infrastructure?

Public schools, colleges and universities are not immune to the lure of federal dollars to accommodate foreign born students. Rather than teach foreign grade school children about our country’s history and culture, in many cases, the opposite is happening. Our children are taught and indoctrinated into foreign cultural beliefs. At a time when Christian values and faith are mocked and denigrated, Islam is being promoted as a religion of peace. Make no mistake, I support clear, unbiased education. Let the facts speak for themselves, but how can this happen when Islam mandates a political correctness for themselves and not for all others?

Throughout American history, immigrants have assimilated peacefully into our culture. They became Americans. The Islamic Nation will never assimilate into our culture but instead, will expect Americans to be dominated by their customs and laws. We cannot allow this to happen.

Books have been written about the immigration problems facing our country. Numerous articles, research and statistics are available that are beyond the scope of this comment section. More public input is necessary to work through the many problems that plague this program and are detrimental to our nation. Checks and balances, outside the government agencies, are necessary. If the system cannot be fixed to the satisfaction of the American people; perhaps it should be dismantled. The money could be better spent on helping our own citizens who are in dire need of it.

This is the thirteenth testimony in our series leading up to the deadline for comments to the Dept. of State on May 19th.  Go here for where they are archived to see what your fellow citizens have said.

I intend to keep posting testimonies, a few a day, until I have exhausted my long list! I had no idea so many of you would respond to my offer!  But, thank you for your hard work!

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

Federation for American Immigration Reform and its legal arm submit testimony to US State Department

Posted by Ann Corcoran on May 21, 2016

Editor:  This is a press release from FAIR/IRLI in response to a request for public comment on the FY2017 Refugee Admissions Program. Comments closed at 5 p.m. on May 19th. (Hat tip: Joanne)

FAIR logo 2

 

(Washington, D.C.) – This week, the Immigration Reform Law Institute (“IRLI”) and the Federation for American Immigration Reform (“FAIR”) filed a public comment (attached here) with the Department of State (“DOS”) regarding its proposed 2017 Refugee Admission’s Program. In their comment, IRLI and FAIR raised three broad concerns regarding the Obama Administration’s current policies and practices:

  1. The DOS and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) are not complying with statutory requirements. Under U.S. law, only a person who has been persecuted or has a well-founded fear of persecution on account of “race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion” can be admitted to the U.S. as a refugee. This Administration appears to have unlawfully adopted the United Nation’s definition of refugee, which includes those fleeing from natural or economic disaster, civil strife, war, crime or other societal afflictions.
  2. DOS has not addressed the extensive fraud and abuse in the refugee application process. The problems with vetting applicants do not end at ensuring each applicant properly complies with the statutory requirements. Extensive fraud and abuse of the application process has been found, yet the Government does not properly address these findings. Such fraud and abuse will only become more prevalent as the President seeks to fulfill his 10,000-Syrian refugee quota by the end of the fiscal year.
  3. The American public is still not adequately protected under the current refugee screening process. The President’s refugee goals are not properly considering the severe national security concerns that face the country in light of the attacks in Paris and in San Bernardino, where the female terrorist passed the Government’s security screening. While the President, Jeh Johnson, and DOS officials say that the security checks for refugees are rigorous, the screenings are not sufficient to protect American citizens. Other government officials who are deeply involved in screening refugees state that the current background investigation produces little, if any, information on those being screened.

Dale L. Wilcox, IRLI’s Executive Director commented, “The Obama Administration’s unilateral expansion of our democratically-enacted refugee laws will lead to increased fraud and greater chances for terrorist-activity as well as pressure on our state and federal welfare budgets, and on the social-cohesion of our communities.” Wilcox continued, “Not only is this Administration ignoring the laws which define who can come into our country as a refugee, it’s ignoring the immigration catastrophe in Europe that’s resulted from those governments being too open to manipulation from foreign migrants. The American people are tired of both the lawlessness and the extreme naiveté on the part of the political class when it comes to immigration policy.”

 

Go here to see all of our information (including copies of testimony) submitted for the FY2017 Presidential determination on the “size and scope” of the UN/US State Department Refugee Admissions Program. (LOL! They are pretending to care what you think even as Obama has already said he is going for 100,000 refugees for his last shot at changing America as he exits the White House!).

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Testimony for 5/19/2016 State Dept. citizen input | Tagged: , | 11 Comments »

 
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