Jewish Council for Public Affairs Deeply Troubled by Record-Low Refugee Cap

New York, NY — The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) is deeply troubled by the Administration’s proposal to cap Fiscal Year 2018 refugee admissions at just 45,000—less than half of the current number—particularly given the scope of the international refugee crisis and other strife around the world. This figure is the lowest refugee cap set by any president since the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program was established in 1980.

JCPA urges Congress to pass legislation that protects America’s global leadership in welcoming immigrants and offering refuge to those fleeing violence and persecution. Lawmakers should continue to uphold the best of our national values: equality, fairness, due process under the law, and respect for human dignity.

“We are deeply concerned about President Trump’s actions on immigration and refugees at a time when the need for the U.S. to be a safe haven is so great,” said David Bernstein, President and CEO of JCPA.

“The American immigrant experience is one of our country’s greatest sources of strength,” stated Cheryl Fishbein, Chair of JCPA. “Severely cutting refugee admissions runs counter to Judaism’s fundamental belief of ‘welcoming the stranger’ and undermines one of our core national purposes: providing a home for immigrants.”

Refugees are among the most stringently vetted populations in the world. Foreign policy and security experts from across the political spectrum have argued that maintaining robust refugee admissions enhances our national security interests, and that unduly restricting immigration serves only to reinforce extremist propaganda.

We urge Congress to act now to ensure that we remain true to our values as a nation built by immigrants and refugees by giving others the same opportunities that our ancestors had to share in the American dream.