On Wednesday September 30th, the Trump Administration announced plans to reduce the number of refugees allowed to resettle in the United States to a new low next fiscal year 2021– allowing resettlement of no more than 15,000 people fleeing violence and persecution from all over the world. The lowest admissions in the 40-year history of the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program this decision is a massive cut from the previous years, continuing a trend for the president that started when he took office in 2017. The 2020 limit was 18,000, down from 30,000 in 2019 and 45,000 in 2018. The average annual cap since the program began is 95,000.
This move has been hit with resistance from civil rights and Immigrant groups calling out the president’s hypocrisy as one who claims to support legal immigration into the country.
Krish O’Mara Vignarajah, president and CEO of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, a national resettlement agency had this to say, ”At a time of unprecedented global need, today’s decision to further cut the refugee admissions ceiling is a complete abdication of our humanitarian and moral duty. Let this serve as a wake-up call to those who believe this administration supports avenues of legal immigration. Refugees go through extreme vetting and have done everything our government has asked of them, yet they continue to be met with open hostility and egregious processing delays from this administration”
Noteworthy that this decision was made unilaterally by the administration without consultation with Congress.