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Let Americans privately sponsor Syrian refugees.

This petition had 561 supporters

Right now, there are amazingly generous people across the US who want to help with the crisis in Syria by volunteering to open their homes to refugee families, and provide them with the resources and support they need to rebuild their lives.

But they can’t. In the US, people and organizations aren’t allowed to privately sponsor refugees. Refugees may only be resettled through a federally administered program that caps the number of refugees who may be admitted each year, in part due to budgetary constraints on resettlement support.

People and organizations should be allowed to volunteer their resources to help refugees if they so choose, in order to allow more refugees fleeing persecution to safely resettle in the United States. Tell Congress to allow the private sponsorship of Syrian refugees.

I’m the Director of the International Refugee Assistance Project, an organization that provides resettlement assistance to thousands of refugees around the world. We’ve received messages from people throughout the United States who want to offer direct assistance to help resettle Syrian refugees, and we have to tell them all the same thing: until the US changes their policy, they’re not allowed to help.

We know private sponsorship works. In Canada, private sponsors welcomed more than 10,000 refugees in just a few months, and, with government resettlement, allowed Canada to reach its goal of resettling 25,000 Syrian refugees. Meanwhile, despite the tremendous humanitarian need, the United States has resettled fewer than 1,000 Syrian refugees in the first five months the current fiscal year.

Federal policy is standing in the way of the generosity of the American people who want to help. Let’s change that.

Sponsorship allows increased resettlement with no additional government spending, and with exactly the same security screening. Sponsorship allows private citizens and organizations to take concrete action to help vulnerable refugees. It’s a common-sense measure that’s been proven to work.

Sign our petition to tell Congress to allow the private sponsorship of Syrian refugees.

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