ILNews

US hits 50,000 refugee cap, but some others still allowed in

 Associated Press
July 13, 2017
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The U.S. has reached the Trump administration's limit of 50,000 refugees for this budget year. That won't stop some additional refugees from entering the United States in the next few months, but they will now face tighter standards.

A U.S. Supreme Court order last month said the administration must admit refugees beyond the 50,000 cap if they can prove a "bona fide relationship" with a person or entity in the United States. That was part of a broader ruling that allowed President Donald Trump to partially administer his contested travel ban affecting six Muslim majority countries.

As of Wednesday, 50,086 refugees have been admitted since the budget year began last October. All those refugees have to undergo a strict screening process. Additional refugees will face the same screening, but will also need to prove they have a close relative living in the United States, a job awaiting them, or admission to a college or university.

In the 2016 budget year, the U.S. admitted about 85,000 refugees, up from 70,000 the previous year.

The State Department, which oversees the refugee program, said Wednesday that it had advised resettlement agencies that the current cap was reached, though anyone traveling to the U.S. would still be admitted.

The additional requirements are supposed to be in place for 120 days, while the government examines security and screening procedures that Trump suggested aren't stringent enough. But a new cap will take effect before then, when the new budget year begins in October, and everything is subject to change after the Supreme Court hears arguments on the travel and refugee bans that month. It's unclear what the new cap will be.

Trump set the refugee limit as part of the broader executive order that sought to keep out foreigners from Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Libya and Yemen. The first iteration of the order in January caused panic and confusion at airports in the U.S. and abroad as foreigners were either denied boarding for U.S.-bound flights or stopped at a U.S. airport and sent back overseas. A federal court blocked that order, and Trump issued a second order that sought to overcome the legal challenges. The Supreme Court opinion lets the government partially enforce the order against anyone without a bona fide relationship.

Kay Bellor, vice president for programs at the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, said Wednesday that her group and other aid agencies still expect to welcome some refugees in the coming months.

Bellor said roughly 26,000 refugees have already been vetted, interviewed and approved for relocation to the United States and an untold number of those people will be able to prove a valid relationship.

Lee Williams, vice president of the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, said some refugees his agency is helping have strong relationships with people in the United States, but they are in limbo while the government examines their cases.

"It's a sad day for the U.S.," Williams said. "This is a travel ban that destroys families and does nothing to add security to the process."

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  1. He TIL team,please zap this comment too since it was merely marking a scammer and not reflecting on the story. Thanks, happy Monday, keep up the fine work.

  2. You just need my social security number sent to your Gmail account to process then loan, right? Beware scammers indeed.

  3. The appellate court just said doctors can be sued for reporting child abuse. The most dangerous form of child abuse with the highest mortality rate of any form of child abuse (between 6% and 9% according to the below listed studies). Now doctors will be far less likely to report this form of dangerous child abuse in Indiana. If you want to know what this is, google the names Lacey Spears, Julie Conley (and look at what happened when uninformed judges returned that child against medical advice), Hope Ybarra, and Dixie Blanchard. Here is some really good reporting on what this allegation was: http://media.star-telegram.com/Munchausenmoms/ Here are the two research papers: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0145213487900810 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0145213403000309 25% of sibling are dead in that second study. 25%!!! Unbelievable ruling. Chilling. Wrong.

  4. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  5. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

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