University of Minnesota study examines refugee resettlement
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A University of Minnesota research study has examined the state of national refugee resettlement organizations in the U.S. as the sociopolitical climate shifts.
The study was published earlier this month surveyed more than 70 refugee resettlement organizations across the country, with a focus on Syrian refugees, Minnesota Daily reported . The study analyzed the strengths, challenges and future outlooks of the county’s refugee resettlement programs.
“I… wanted to get a perspective from (resettlement organizations) on what’s going on on the ground, if you will,” said lead researcher Damir Utrzan. “I think there was a lot of anecdotal evidence… but up until we designed this there wasn’t anything scientific that was about to back up those claims using hard data.”
The U.S. is on track to admit the lowest number of refugees since resettlement programs were created, according to Utrzan. The study saw a 98 percent decrease in Syrians admitted during the first four months of 2018 when compared to that same period the previous year.
Researchers found that resettlement programs have been experiencing funding cuts, which make them more reliant on grants and private donations.
Groups are having to accept that they won’t be able to offer a consistent response to the global refugee crisis with the funding cuts, said Sarah Brenes, refugee and immigrant program director for the Advocates for Human Rights in the Twin Cities.
“I think we’ve seen a lot of our partner agencies trying to figure out how to continue to support the individuals they work with, who have even heightened anxiety given the anti-refugee, anti-immigrant climate,” Brenes said.
The study also found that misinformation often fuels anti-refugee discrimination and prejudice.
Information from: The Minnesota Daily, http://www.mndaily.com/