I’m happy to report on a letter-to-the-editor at Syracuse.com because I had meant to post on the original article that generated this reader’s letter and never got around to it.
Letter-writer George Checksfield is referring to an article, here, in which we learn that the State of New York is plugging the “hole” created by lost federal revenue for Catholic Charities (from you really, the taxpayer).
He wants to know why does a private group like this need taxpayer dollars to hold on to employees they don’t need.
The mainstream media rarely makes the connection clear to the average taxpaying citizen reading a story like this that there is a direct relationship between the number of refugees being brought in and Catholic Charities of Onondaga County (this one and many others throughout the US) budget.
Their payments from the feds are based on how many refugees the agency places. It is a per refugee head basis and so big families bring in bigger bucks to CC (sorry for the zillionith time I’ve repeated that!).
When the President reduced the number of refugees being admitted to the US, it caused all these federal contractors to see their budgets shrink.
From TripAdvisor, a Program to Help Refugees Get to Know the U.S.
In partnership with the International Rescue Committee, the Welcome Homeinitiative will offer tours and activities in New York City and Northern California for recently resettled refugees.
TripAdvisor wants refugees to the United States to explore and get to know their new homeland, and the hospitality company’s yearlong Welcome Home campaign aims to do just that: launched last week, Welcome Home gives recently resettled refugees in New York City and parts of Northern California the opportunity to book a tour or activity of their choice through TripAdvisor Experiences, a category that offers travelers things to do in around 1,900 destinations globally.
The International Rescue Committee, a nongovernmental organization that provides services to displaced people globally, is TripAdvisor’s partner in Welcome Home and is responsible for reaching out to newly resettled refugees to tell them about the initiative.
Why do they need to speak English if they aren’t going out into the workplace?
Because, of course, USCRI (one of nine federal refugee contractors***) and others on the No Borders Left want to be sure they can pass a citizenship test and ultimately vote.
And, know that even if the refugee flow into the country is slowing down, federal grants are still going out for various and sundry ‘needs’ of the refugee community.
The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) is still sending out millions of dollars that is helping the contractors stay financially afloat through the Trump admissions slowdown.
(New readers might want to see that the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) recently ditched its longtime leader—-Lavinia Limon—here.)
Yes, elder refugees are eligible for Social Security benefits!
And, before I get to the story at the Albany Times Union about USCRI’s $180,000 grant, readers need to know that we admit refugees to the US who are over 65 years old and that they are eligible for Supplemental Security Income(see here).
Curious about how many senior citizen refugees we admit, I checked some numbers at Wrapsnet.
I couldn’t find an over all number so here are some selected ethnic groups.
From FY09 to today we admitted refugees over 65 years old from (I only looked up a few nationalities!):
Surely, for the whole refugee population from every country, the number of refugees eligible for SSI in the last ten years must be 20,000-30,000!
And, I don’t know if the refugee industry advocates got rid of the rule (they were trying) that requires the senior refugee to attain citizenship in seven years or become ineligible to continue receiving their gratis SSI. (Too lazy this morning to search for it!)
USCRI Albany is being paid by you, the US taxpayer, to help senior refugees get their servicesand is seeking volunteers in Albany because Albany has run out of American senior citizens in need of volunteer help.
And, btw, the volunteers will do the actual work while some USCRI staffer is paid with the grant money to ‘administer’ the program.
ALBANY — When 64-year-old Raaida Aldabass first came to the U.S. from Syria one year ago, she used to cry every day that she wanted to go back to her country.
“But now it is better, she is happy because she’s learning the language,” Rana Safeih, Aldabass’ daughter, said in Arabic.
Aldabass is one of nearly 30 senior citizen refugees receiving ENL tutoring sessions.
These sessions are just one of multiple new services the Albany chapter of the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants has been providing to its older refugee population after receiving a three-year, $180,000 grant in January 2017.
“The main idea is to connect refugees with already-existing services,” said Jake Slutzky, program coordinator at USCRI-Albany.
The program, called Services to Older Refugees, is broken up into two categories: community outreach and education, and intensive case management. USCRI provides their nearly 30 older refugees extensive assistance in areas such as housing, medical care, legal assistance and social integration, to name a few.
“Folks need to learn English and pass the U.S. citizenship test, but do not have the mobility to get to class,” Slutzky said. “Volunteers go to the refugees’ homes to teach them English at a time that the grandchildren or children who speak English are home, so they can help with the lesson. Besides helping with ENL, you’re helping an elderly person keep their mind active and become self-sufficient.”
And, this isn’t just happening in Albany, here is a story from Phoenix about elder refugees who have many needs, including mental health needs.
By the way, if you wonder why USCRI supports the DACA kids and every other group of illegal aliens here in the US, just know that if amnesty is granted, USCRI and the other contractors expect to be hired by the feds to help the ‘New Americans’ get their services too!
*** These are the nine federal contractors paid by you to place refugees in to hundreds of towns and cities via their subcontractors (see directory of offices).
The number in parenthesis is the percentage of their income paid by you (the taxpayer) to place those refugees and get them signed up for their services (like SSI)!
“And when half the community didn’t agree with this program, they were called racists, bigots and so on.”
(Poughkeepsie resident David Cole)
We reportedabout ten days ago that this was in the cards for Church World Service’s resettlement office where citizens complained “loudly” that they opposed the opening in the first place, but CWS went ahead anyway.
Church World Service was responsible for my entry into this whole issue over ten years ago when its subcontractor at the time, Virginia Council of Churches, began placing refugees quietly (that is the operative word!) in to Hagerstown, MD.
Citizens of the often struggling western Maryland city wanted to know—why here? We have so many needy people already!
(By the way, they are no longer operating here despite their best efforts to paint questioners as racists.)
You would think CWS would have learned from past mistakes…guess not!
POUGHKEEPSIE–The refugee resettlement agency that operated briefly out of the Family Partnership Center in Poughkeepsie has closed its office, and it all points back to President Donald Trump’s executive order earlier this year reducing the number of refugees coming to the United States.
For new readers, reducing the numbers means they weren’t going to be paid by the feds (you, the taxpayer). They receive vast amounts of their budgetsbased on a per refugee head basis.
Hudson Valley News continues:
Last fall, the global humanitarian ministry held public forums to outline its intentions and answer questions about integrating refugees into the community.
At the November meeting at Christ Episcopal Church, some expressed opposition, decrying the “secrecy” of the plan and how it was “thrust upon” city residents without their approval.
David Cole, a Poughkeepsie resident who led a group opposing the refugee resettlement, said he was not surprised to learn that CWS had closed its Hudson Valley office.
“Poughkeepsie was not the right place for a refugee resettlement office,” he said.
“CWS…tried to push this onto the community, and the community wasn’t happy about it. They still went ahead and pushed an office into the area. I’m sorry to say this, but the whole thing backfired in their faces.”
Cole, who organized a petition against resettlement late last year, said that after Trump cut the number of refugees in half, the agency wastefully spent all its resources in a community where many already are struggling.
“And when half the community didn’t agree with this program, they were called racists, bigots and so on,” he said. “It’s a shame those people didn’t see the real reasons why, and that is, Poughkeepsie is not the right place for a refugee resettlement.”
Obama/Hillary and the refugee contractors, like CWS, had big plans going in to 2016. They fully expected Hillary to win and the flow of refugees to tick up even higher, so the US State Department was actively scouting new sites (old ones were getting overloaded and they needed fresh territory).
As the Obama Administration was winding down, new resettlement sites were planned in many small and medium-sized cities, but the State Department never revealed the whole list because of course they knew opposition would be inevitable.
At one point we heard that there were as many as 47 potential new sites being secretly developed. We reported on the ones we learned about, including Poughkeepsie.
Hereis a list (incomplete) from a post I wrote at the time Trump was elected.
Below are new sites we have identified so far of the supposed 47 the Obama Administration is (or has been) trying to get established.
One of the first things the Trump Administration must do is to make all of this information public information. Here are some of the sites we have identified so far by just keeping an eye on local news reports:
[The status listed below is as it was at this time last year—ed]
I would love to know how many we can cross off the list.
Let me know if you have definitive news on any of these locations. Of course Poughkeepsie is dead.
To learn more about the ‘New Site Development Guide‘ introduced by Lawrence Bartlettone of the career bureaucrats who is still in control at the Bureau of Population Refugees and Migration, click here.
Heritage missed the mark! and this is one reason why:
Bartlett was a headliner at a one-sided panel discussion on USRAP reform held at the Heritage Foundationhere(Is Heritage selling us out?) in September; and, thus, surely had some influence on Heritage’s “Roadmap for reform.”
I’ll wager that Heritage’s inside-the-Washington-beltway experts had no clue that controversy was swirling in cities like Poughkeepsie and surely Bartlett and his crew didn’t tell them!
The political Left-wingers, like those at Church World Service, don’t like LOUD when it comes from the people who don’t want their towns and cities changed without their consultation.
I had to laugh when I saw this headline at NPR:
Opposition To Refugee Arrivals Keeps Getting Louder
Don’t you know! Loud is bad if it doesn’t come from the Left!
And, it is funny, just last night I was so irritated by Leftwing commentators always referring to Rightwing “dog whistles” when along comes a story with some dog whistles from the Left!
If you don’t know what the heck dog whistles are (in the political sense), it is when a supposedly secretive message is being sent to one’s own political base.
Before I give you some juicy bits on this NPR story, you might want to revisit my reports on Poughkeepsie here.
In the waning months of the Obama Administration (before November) hopes were running high. Obama had set a refugee admissions ceiling for FY17 at 110,000, the highest in years and certainly much higher than any of his previous 7 years, and they all thought that Hillary was headed to the Oval.
So the US State Department with its contractors*** set about finding lots and lots of fresh territory in which to place refugees (older sites were getting overloaded and tensions were building). Poughkeepsie was one such new site.
Then along came Donald J. Trump to mess up their big plans….
A few days after Donald Trump was elected President, more than a hundred people packed into a church sanctuary in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. to hear a presentation about refugee resettlement in their town.
It didn’t go well.
This was after Trump had campaigned on refusing Syrian refugees, citing security concerns. In the church that night, staffers from the non-profit organization Church World Service laid out their plan to open a refugee resettlement office in Poughkeepsie, and bring in about 80 refugees, mostly from the Congo, Iraq and Syria.
The audience had questions. A lot of them. They wanted to know, would they be safe? And could Poughkeepsie afford to care for these new residents?
“As a resident of this town, of this city, I can look out my window any time and find someone in need,” said Poughkeepsie resident Steven Planck, to vigorous applause.
I have seen this comment dozens of times and ask this question: If Church World Serviceis a Christian ‘charity,’ why not focus on the poor people in every American city? Why are we importing more poverty?
The head of Church World Service’s refugee program, Erol Kekic, spent more than an hour trying to respond to the questions.
“We had to do a lot of truth-telling, and dispel some myths,” says Kekic. “From ‘the value of my property will go down because refugees will be resettling next to me,’ to ‘are we bringing terrorists?’ to ‘why are we bringing people who don’t all look like us?'”
It’s getting harder for refugees to find a welcoming home in the U.S. The Trump administration has cut the number of refugees allowed into the country. In cities and town across the nation, citizens are protesting refugees being resettled in their neighborhoods.
In Poughkeepsie, the debate got ugly. On social media, people called opponents of the refugee plan racists and Islamophobes. The staff of Church World Service received death threats. [Ho hum! Death threats, so what else is new—ed]
Until recently, refugee resettlement in the U.S. had wide bipartisan support. The U.S. State Department, along with nine large non-profit groups, decides where to resettle refugees fleeing persecution, war and violence. They look for communities where there are volunteers to help.
The reason the refugee industry had “wide bipartisan support” and still does is that the Republican establishment wants the cheap labor for their big business donors and the Dems want the voters. And it is only in the last few years that this secret program has been exposed to the American taxpayers who shell out the bucks for it!
“We all wondered, why? Why Poughkeepsie?”says David Cole, 37, a lifelong resident of the town who helped mobilize opposition to Church World Service. Cole insists he has nothing against Muslims or other refugees. But he says Poughkeepsie isn’t a wealthy town; unemployment there is higher than the statewide average.
Why Poughkeepsie? Because Church World Service thought a banner year was coming with a slew of Obama/Clinton paying refugee “clients,” and they figured Poughkeepsie would be a pushover!
“I looked at people that I knew,” Cole says. “And I said, OK, well, why aren’t these people getting help? Why are we trying to help, you know, people from war-torn countries in an area where there’s people looking for jobs? Like, they’re scavenging for jobs around here. I don’t get it.”
“Yes, there are loud voices in every community,” Kekic says. “But they’re usually not the majority, and they’re usually just a very loud minority.”
I haven’t mentioned the taxpayer-funded subsidiary industry beyond the resettlement contractors much lately, but a story from Rochester, NY reminds me to tell you about it again.
I call these ‘ethnic self-help organizations’ little ACORNS.
Do you remember the community organizers of ACORN where they ostensibly helped the poor get their services (aka welfare), but also made sure they were properly indoctrinated, registered to vote and were voting for the Dems.
If a problem cropped up, they were also the advocacy media arm for THEIR people!
Well, these ethnic non-profit groups, just for refugees (funded by you), are doing the same. The federal Office of Refugee Resettlementshells out about four million of your bucks every year for this.
I contend that this activity of the ORR actually fosters division, setting certain groups of people up as somehow special and separate. Why should any class of immigrant be given special attention and federal grants?
Notice for all theyakking about Trump switching out the word ‘integration’ and replacing it with ‘assimilation,’ the ORR hasn’t gotten the message.
From the Office of Refugee Resettlement website:
(Emphasis below is mine)
The Ethnic Community Self-Help program supports ethnic community-based organizations in providing refugee populations with critical services to assist them in becoming integratedmembers of American society.
Throughout the history of the United States, the involvement of refugees and their community-based organizations in resettlement has been critical to integration. Today, these organizations continue to enhance the provision and effectiveness of refugee services. For refugees, their active participation in resettlement is empowering and plays an important role in theintegration of the entire refugee community.
The Ethnic Community Self-Help program provides assistance to refugee community-based organizations and other groups that:
[Check out this list! They are so good at making it all look and sound so benign!—-ed]
Address community building
Facilitate cultural adjustment and integration
Deliver mutually supportive functions
Orientation and support to new and established refugees
Public education to the larger community
Ethnic Community Self-Help programs connect newly arrived refugees to community resources.Ethnic Community Self-Help programs target all ORR populations, and all U.S.-based governmental and certified non-profit organizations are eligible to apply. [Community resources is code for welfare, but isn’t that the job of the contractors we pay millions to each year, for that very same work!—ed]
There is a list of grantees at the ORR website, but it is old. It is not the new list that includes the payola to a Rochester, NY ethnic community group. Why can’t these federal agencies keep websites up to date?
Rochester ETHNIC self-help group gets $200,000 crows Congresswoman! (Take that Donald!)
Here is the news from Rochester, NY where a former Somali group, now supposedly open to all refugees, has been awarded a $200,000 renewable grant to put former volunteers on a taxpayer funded salary!
The Rochester nonprofit agency Refugees Helping Refugees has received a $200,000 federal grant to support the various services it provides for newly arriving refugees, Rep. Louise Slaughter announced Monday.
The grant comes from the federal Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement.
Refugees Helping Refugees was founded in 2002 as the Somali Community of Western New York, but since has expanded its reach to help all refugees, not just Somalis.
[Many of the specifically Somali ‘ethnic’ groups (and there are boatloads of them) have had to expand their base because it was becoming unseemly that taxpayer dollars were being directed at one very special group of refugees.—ed]
It offers English classes, job training, benefits assistance and activities for senior citizens, among other things.
The grant will allow the organization to pay salaries for several positions that, until now, had been handled on a volunteer basis, including a case manager and coordinators for its various programs, director Meredith Keller said.
The $200,000 grant is renewable for three years, meaning it could total $600,000. Until now, the agency’s annual budget has been about $150,000, Keller said.
In a statement, Slaughter, D-Fairport, used the funding announcement to get in a dig at President Donald Trump, who has pushed for policies to trim refugee arrivals and services.
“This federal award for Refugees Helping Refugees is a testament to the inclusive, important work happening right here in our community,” Slaughter said in the statement. “This funding will help further that critical mission at a time when the Trump administration continues to use travel bans and shortsighted policies to prevent refugees from finding safety in our country.”
I have a category, not used lately, called ‘Ethnic Community Based Organizations.’ That was the official name for them at the Office of Refugee Resettlement when I first started writing about them, but now they call them Ethnic Community self-help groups. This post is filed here.
You should look around where you live and see if you have a community organizing group where you live specifically for refugees.