FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 26, 2019
Reform Jewish Movement Denounces Historically Low Refugee Cap
WASHINGTON – In response to the Trump administration’s intention to set a refugee cap of 18,000 for fiscal year 2020 and executive order allowing states and localities to opt out of refugee resettlement, Rabbi Jonah Dov Pesner, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, released the following statement on behalf of the Union for Reform Judaism, the Central Conference on American Rabbis and the wider Reform Movement institutions:
“The United States has the capacity, resources, and clear moral obligation to help protect the world’s most vulnerable people. Yet, by capping the number of refugees admitted to the U.S. in 2020 at a historic low of 18,000, this administration is shirking its responsibility and flouting its leadership role on the world stage.
The pairing of this shamefully low figure with an executive order allowing states and localities to veto resettling refugees only further abdicates our country’s moral responsibility. We urge state and local officials to strongly and proactively voice their support for refugee resettlement in their communities.”
“Jews have long known what it is like to be unwelcomed and persecuted, and we have felt the disastrous consequences of nations across the world shutting their doors to us. Our tradition and history alike urge us to welcome and care for refugees today. We remain steadfastly committed to preserving the U.S. refugee program and ensuring this country is once again a haven for those in need of protection.”
The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the Washington office of the Union for Reform Judaism, whose nearly 850 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, whose membership includes more than 2,000 Reform rabbis. Visit www.rac.org for more.