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Some officials call for refugee admissions to be slashed

On Behalf of | Jul 26, 2019 | Asylum

There may be fewer refugees in Florida and the rest of the country if the Trump administration has its way in 2020. Reportedly, one official at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services wants to cut the number of refugees allowed into the country to zero. Other suggestions from the Department of Homeland Security range from 3,000 to 10,000. This is substantially less than the roughly 95,000 refugees the country has accepted every year since 1980.

Admission of refugees has already dropped significantly under the Trump administration. The administration has sought to prevent asylum seekers from Central America from entering the country, and the admissions target overall has been set at 30,000. This is the lowest number the program has ever seen.

Amnesty International has called on the administration to raise the numbers back to 95,000 for fiscal year 2020. One danger is that the shrinking of resources that will occur if the refugee numbers are at zero will slow down the processing of remaining refugees and the ability to bring the numbers back up after Trump leaves office. Over the long term, the United States would continue to struggle to accept and resettle refugees. Cutting admissions to zero could mean that among the refugees turned away are Iraqis who worked as translators for the U.S. government.

At present, some people may still be eligible for political asylum in the United States. People have the right to apply for asylum if they face persecution in their home country because of race, religion or for certain other reasons. An attorney may be able to review the process with an individual who is seeking asylum and keep the person abreast of any changes in immigration law. The attorney might also be able to accompany the person to court appearances and assist with preparing paperwork and documentation.