Statement for the Record — “Oversight of the United States Refugee Admissions Program”

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The U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) expands the liberty of Americans to welcome people fleeing violence and persecution around the world. USRAP also stands as a repudiation of authoritarianism that has spread in recent years, vindicating the superiority of America's system of free enterprise and individual liberty. Since its creation in 1980, USRAP has provided safety for 3.4 million refugees.1 This experience has shown that refugees do assimilate into American society, master English, find gainful employment, and revitalize communities across the country.

USRAP is a more crucial opportunity for American philanthropy today than ever. At the start of this year, war, violence, and persecution had already displaced 67.8 million people, more than at any point since the Second World War.2 This worldwide crisis grows worse each day. More than 600,000 people have fled violence in Burma into Bangladesh since August 25 alone with another 400,000 on their way.3 USRAP has historically provided the most important avenue to resettle refugees permanently outside of these zones of conflict and instability.

David Bier

David J. Bier is an immigration policy analyst at the Cato Institute’s Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity.