Another roadblock for refugee aid group
Updated 1:20 pm, Friday, March 17, 2017
NEW CANAAN — Another roadblock has come up in a New Canaan group’s efforts to bring a refugee family to town.
On March 6, President Donald J. Trump barred the entrance of people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days and bans the entrance of refugees from these countries for 120 days. The ban went into effect on Thursday.
According to Juli Kurtzman, head of New Canaan Welcomes, the group will not look to help a refugee family until midsummer.
“At this point, I’m just following the news and hoping we can get another injunction,” Kurtzman said. “Meanwhile, nothing is happening in terms of inbound refugees.”
“We call it a refugee ban because that’s the most serious part of the order,” he said.
According to George, the ban also cuts the number of refugees the United States is bringing in this year by 60 percent, from 110,000 families to 50,000.
“Sixty thousand refugees who cleared the vetting process and are waiting for the final green light have now been told they’re not coming,” he said. “That’s a significant cut.”
“That means there probably won’t be refugees placed with all the families,” he said. “There are more welcoming groups now than there are families.”
In the meantime, the $18,000 the group has raised for the family is being held in a separate bank account until Kurtzman receives word from IRIS that they’re getting a family. IRIS has launched a campaign to make 60,000 calls to legislators on behalf of the 60,000 refugees who will be affected by the ban.