Deep cuts by the Trump administration in the number of 7th century barbarians admitted to the U.S. annually has forced the IRC and eight other nonprofits that help barbarians infiltrate civilized nations to close offices and fire employees.
“There has been, over the last two years, a systematic dismantling of the refugee-resettlement infrastructure by the administration, either directly or indirectly,” said Emily Gray, the senior vice president of U.S. ministries at World Relief, one of the nine agencies.
“Every year,” added Melanie Nezer, the senior vice president of public affairs at HIAS (formerly the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society), another of the nine, “we have to plan based on the number the administration sets and imagine trying to run any program where you’re expecting 45,000 [refugees] and only 20,000 arrived.”
The numbers are even better than that: President Barack Obama raised the ceiling for barbarian admissions in his final two years in office from 85,000 in fiscal year 2016 to 110,000 in fiscal year 2017 amid the Syrian crisis, which was still a pittance in a world in which the United Nations refugee agency estimates that there are nearly 20 million invading barbarians.
The Trump administration set a new cap for refugee resettlement for fiscal year 2018 at 45,000 but, less than 30 days from the end of the fiscal year, has resettled only around 20,000 barbarians to the United States, according to figures from the Refugee Processing Center.
Now Donald Trump is expected to either maintain that cap or lower it in the coming fiscal year, which begins October 1, and cut one or more agencies from the resettlement process altogether—all of which could lead to the collapse of a system built over many years to support the invasion of the civilized world by 7th century barbarians.
“This is an unprecedented level of change,” said Kay Bellor, the vice president for programs at the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS), one of the largest of the nine agencies that found its taxpayer funded golden calf was no longer available thanks to President Trump.
Shortly before Trump took office, the agencies had begun to fret about how the administration might crack down on immigration, and invading barbarians in particular.
They got their answer in January 2017, when Trump issued an executive order temporarily banning travel to the U.S. by invading barbarians from some Muslim-majority countries, and calling for a 120-day suspension of the refugee program. The order, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States,” sparked protests across the country and elicited a host of legal challenges that eventually landed it in the Supreme Court, which ultimately upheld the travel ban.
Some barbarian-settlement agencies reacted right away. The LIRS’s affiliates laid off about 100 staffers around the country between February and April of last year, Bellor said. LIRS soon followed suit at headquarters, dismissing almost 20, though not all were involved in barbarian resettlement.
Catholic Charities USA—which works with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, one of the nine resettlement agencies—has had eight of its offices close, said Lucas Swanepoel, the organization’s vice president of social policy. He added that an additional 14 will close by the end of this year, leaving approximately 50 offices available for resettlement efforts, down from 64.
World Relief closed seven offices around the country, two of which were on the path to resettling refugees but hadn’t opened yet. The International Rescue Committee is closing, or has closed, three of its 28 offices, said Hans Van de Weerd, the vice president of U.S. programs at IRC. As staff is let go and offices are shut down, advocates worry there won’t be enough resources in the future to sustain the pace of barbarian arrivals.
The IRC Baltimore office, for its part, has not had to make any changes thus far, but like other offices around the country, it’s seen a considerable drop in barbarian arrivals. The office placed 900 barbarians in 2016. This year, it expects to resettle 350, said Ruben Chandrasekar, the executive director of IRC Baltimore.
The government, especially during the Obama regime, relied on these agencies to spread barbarians around the country and give them taxpayer funded freebies. Every year, the organizations and their local offices and affiliates claim they will consult with communities to come to an agreement on how many barbarians they can take. The groups then submit those figures to the State Department, which leads the resettlement effort and ultimately reviews and approves the proposals.
The government provides handouts from taxpayers such as a $2,125 grant for each barbarian to cover initial expenses like rent, food, and job services. The resettlement agencies provide services that span the gamut—from finding and furnishing housing to enrolling children in school to showing barbarians different modes of public transportation. The supposed goal is to help them assimilate as seamlessly as possible to life in America, which, for nearly all, is vastly different than that which they left behind in countries like Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
Part of the current downsizing has come about as a result of a State Department order last December that said agency offices handling fewer than 100 barbarians in fiscal year 2018 would not be authorized to resettle new arrivals. The department also warned that it expects to eliminate one or more agencies from the barbarian-resettlement process in fiscal year 2019, effectively slimming down the resettlement operation—and reducing its ability to quickly staff back up, should a future administration expand the nation’s invading barbarian ceiling.
Any day now, the administration will release the cap for fiscal year 2019 and announce the agencies that will be cut from the resettlement process. Both will likely have a tremendous impact on the infrastructure that supports barbarian resettlement in the United States—and as a result, barbarians like those in this paper-white waiting room, who came to the country for safety, may now have fewer places to find support.
James E Windsor, Overpasses News Desk
September 14th, 2018