JRS/USA Opposes Proposed Cuts in U.S. Foreign Assistance Budget

11 February 2020

Jesuit Refugee Service/USA expresses disappointment in the Administration’s Budget Request for Fiscal Year 2021, which includes a 22 percent cut in foreign assistance. This could have grave consequences for the well-being, and even survival, of millions of the world’s refugees.

The proposed budget would cut funding at a time when U.S. engagement and leadership is greatly needed. From the Venezuelan crisis in our own hemisphere to the Syrian conflict entering its tenth year, this is the time for the U.S. to remain engaged in helping those who are at their most vulnerable

In 2018 alone, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimated that 70.8 million people were forcibly displaced worldwide, an increase of almost 3 million people from the previous year. It is estimated that 37,000 people per day are forced to flee their homes due to conflict and persecution.

JRS/USA works with refugees around the world, and knows the real impact that the these proposed budget cuts could have on humanitarian programs that impact the lives of refugees around the world. “U.S. leadership is critical in ensuring that the needs of the most vulnerable refugees are met,” said Giulia McPherson, Director of Advocacy & Operations. “We see this every day in places like Chad, Ecuador, and South Africa where the U.S. is helping to provide access to education, livelihoods, and healthcare for refugees who otherwise would have no place to turn.”

As the world grapples with finding long-term solutions for those who have been forcibly displaced from their homes, now is not to time to turn our backs on helping to meet their most basic needs. JRS/USA thanks the Congress for their past support for these critical programs and urges them to reverse the Administration’s proposed cuts as the annual appropriations process unfolds.

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