Georgia’s refugee resettlement efforts are out of control
by Joe Newton
February 18, 2014 04:00 AM | 3429 views | 12 12 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Thirty-four years ago, President Jimmy Carter — grandfather of Georgia Democrat gubernatorial candidate Jason Carter — signed into law the Refugee Resettlement Act. This well-intentioned and costly law, however, is outdated and must be drastically overhauled.

The act provided for 70,000 legal refugees per year to enter with a fast-track toward citizenship. The U.S. State Department was supposed to screen applicants for communicable diseases and security threats — and the refugees were supposed to be designated as fleeing from brutal treatment due to their religious and political beliefs. This is no longer the case.

Incredibly, our country’s refugee screening has basically been turned over to the United Nations. The U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees determines who meets the “refugee” definition. Ninety-five percent of the refugees arriving are referred by this agency, says researcher Edwin Rubenstein. Even more incredible, he found that the top 10 countries of origin are Bhutan, Burma, Iraq, Somalia, Cuba, Congo, Iran, Eritrea, Sudan and Ethiopia. Clearly, the U.N.’s definitions and priorities are quite different from those of the average American!

The designation of “refugee” is now most often given to everyone in an entire class of people who are deemed victims of “discrimination.” An individual need not prove personal hardship.

American religious and secular agencies also receive taxpayer funds for every refugee they get the U.N. to recommend for admission. Then the refugees are foisted off on communities without warning or preparation — and DeKalb County has been a favorite dumping ground. And, as one can see from the top 10 countries of origin, many of these refugees have customs and culture that mix into American culture about as well as oil and water.

The program has brought into Georgia over 66,000 refugees who average having four children per year. We now have the third generation of these people in Georgia who are eligible to vote — with a potential voting population of over 150,000.

In 2010 the welfare cost to Georgians was $17 million, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Counties chipped in $4 million of your money — most of which came from your property taxes. The federal government pays most of the cost for 90 days, and then Georgians absorb the welfare cost in perpetuity. Estimates show that the Georgia welfare cost is now approaching $40 million annually and rising exponentially.

Because of this program, DeKalb County schools must provide costly instruction in over 100 languages. Cobb schools also have to grapple with this growing language burden.

To his credit, Gov. Nathan Deal asked the State Department to stop sending more refugees to Georgia — and it has so far complied. But that is only a temporary solution.

The bottom line: Georgia does not have to participate. It doesn’t have to accept the federal money. Research shows that if a state legislature cuts off the money, these people move to another state. When Indiana and other states cut off the money the welfare-minded refugee population quickly moved to greener pastures.

Also, according to HHS, of the Georgia refugees who do want to work only 40 percent are still working after 90 days. At the end of a year, only 18 percent still work and there is a rapid drop-off soon thereafter.

This is an entirely new welfare class we are creating to the detriment of our state and culture.

It is noteworthy, by the way, that state Sen. Jason Carter has never made any effort to try to reduce or eliminate this program even though it is overburdening his DeKalb County constituency. In fact, he supports it as part of his grandfather’s “legacy.”

Democrats joined the Republican governor to temporarily stem this refugee tide into our state. But why doesn’t the General Assembly just simply end this refugee racket by cutting off the money flow?

Joe Newton is chairman, Citizens for Refugee Resettlement Relief in Georgia.
Comments
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rjpark
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February 24, 2014
This article is a disgrace and distortion. I live in Marietta and have spent on an almost weekly basis as a volunteer with refugees of all ethnic groups in Clarkston. They are enriching our country. We for instance have 5000 Bhutanese refugees in Atlanta. Over 50 have bought homes, there is somebody employed in some job in almost all families and several businesses have opened in Clarkston. There are facts that can be presented that are factual and wil show the positive financial impact

Somehow I feel that this is directed in this manner because most of the refugees (not Bhutanese) are Muslim. If we were asked to take 5000 Danes of Swedes somehow, I believe the response would be different. Joe-I would invite to meet refugees in Clarskton directly, Your position might modify when you hear their stories.
d.redd
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February 24, 2014
Continuing from my previous---apart from problems with facts, the article is mostly just offensive to me and the community I am a part of as he uses words about refugees like “foisted” and “dumped” as if they were trash and suggests that the ‘average American’ would obviously not want people from their backgrounds here. He even goes so far as to imply that it’s a problem that those who become citizens can vote because apparently having people from a different background being able to vote is frightening. Spouting off about “our culture” being threatened? I am surprised a newspaper would be willing to print such an inaccurate and prejudice-laden article.
d.redd
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February 24, 2014
I am not sure I can respond adequately to this article in one post. Suffice it to say that this article is full of misinformation about the refugee program that someone could easily fact check (the US does interview and determine qualifications, schools obviously teach in English, etc.), the financial information he gives has no context, and the statistics simply cannot be true. Is he saying that of 66,000 people that have come over the last thirty or forty years only 18% ever worked more than a year? Even if you just look at people who came as refugees in the last 5 years, you will find that they make up a strong workforce in the GA industry, are paying rents---even already buying homes---and are frequent local businesses and services. Obvoiusly they have income. (And their income and property taxes are just as much a part of the system of “our money” as that of anyone else.)
KA123
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February 20, 2014
Newton's article attempts to put a veneer of respectability on hate speech. This same article 40 years ago would have used the "N" word instead of the word "refugee" and would have seemed just as earnest and sincere. Thankfully through the lens of history we see just how misguided those racists were when they worried that integration would be to the "detriment of our state and culture" and that minorities should be kept separate because their culture and American culture mix "about as well as oil and water."
Paul137
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February 23, 2014
A "racist" is anyone who's winning an argument with a liberal.

As usual, the liberal can't engage with any of the facts about what's actually happening -- in this case, what's happening to the country under this onslaught.

**Scores** of languages in the public schools? There's no precedent for that in U.S. history (except in the last decade all around the country). And the aliens' not expected to assimilate to English but, instead, we're supposed to provide them with translation services, along with the rest of the dole.
AJ1
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February 20, 2014
I would like to the know the sources of your facts. A one sided article should at least list the sources, or it really has no credibility in my book, whether I agree or not.
Guido Sarducci
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February 18, 2014
Lib and Kevin, that old tired BS about America being a land of immigrants won't wash. Americans are peoples from all over the glode, with one thing in common.Tbey desire to be a part f hte Aemrican culture, speak the commion language, and pursue the American dream. They came here legally and became citizens legally.

They did not sneak across the border, break the law, partake of our social services, refuse to learn our language and dodge paying income taxes.

Neither of your comments have any validity./
Kevin Foley
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February 18, 2014
Sarducci (whoever you are) - Did you even read what Newton wrote? This piece is about refugees, not illegal immigration. There's a difference, not that I'd expect you to understand that.

Guido Sarducci
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February 18, 2014
Newton is writing baout refugees. Lib brought the word immigrantinto the discussion and you tied it to the illegal immigration issue with your asinine remark about D. A. King.

You want to discuss refugees, let's discuss refugees. In such case let's keep the "immigration" and "illegal immgration" issues out of it.
Lib in Cobb
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February 18, 2014
"Every aspect of the American economy has profited from the contributions of immigrants".

President John F. Kennedy

Kevin Foley
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February 18, 2014
Does Newton know the Mayflower refugees were escaping religious persecution in England?

America has always embraced refugees. It says so right on the Statue of Liberty:

“Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me:

I lift my lamp beside the golden door."

Newton sounds just like D.A. King. Perhaps they should merge their organizations.
Paul137
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February 23, 2014
That statue is actually named "Liberty Enlightening the World," and it has absolutely nothing to do with immigration ... or refugees, for that matter. Instead, it calls attention to what ordered liberty has produced in the U.S. and suggests it as an example for the rest of the world. (Hence, liberty **enlightening** the world.)

Fraudulent refugees and illegal immigration are about as opposite to the rule of law and ordered liberty as you can get.

Roberto Suro, executive director of the Tomás Rivera Policy Institute at the University of Southern California and founding director of the Pew Hispanic Center made this memorably clear in his July 5, 2009 op-ed in the Washington Post, "She Was Never About Those Huddled Masses":

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/07/02/AR2009070201737_pf.html

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