Topic

refugees

78 petitions

Update posted 4 days ago

Petition to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

Evacuate Refugees from Libyan War Zones

The Need: Refugees trapped in Libyan prisons amid an escalating civil war are begging the outside world to save their lives. They escaped war zones and fled persecution in their own homelands, and are seeking nothing more than protection and life with dignity. However, in Libya they have been left to die without protection, in a war zone from which they cannot flee. The U.S. State Department must act quickly to support evacuations of these innocent people from harm and save their lives. The Story: Clashes between government forces and rebel militias are raging in Libya for the third time in 7 months. Over 10,000 Libyans have been displaced, but one group who have been unable to flee are the 6,000 refugees from Eritrea, Sudan and Somalia who are locked inside Libyan detention centers for simply seeking protection. About 3,000 of these refugees are currently trapped in areas of active combat, and their lives are at a great danger. Just today, militia soldiers entered the prison complex of Qaser Bin Ghashir and shot into the crowd of men, women and children, killing two refugees and wounding 10 more. The refugees must tend to the wounds of the injured themselves, as no medical aid has been able to reach them. The refugees have just one lifeline in this nightmare: cell phones they managed to smuggle into their prisons. They use these phones to communicate with the outside world, sending messages of desperation to anyone who is willing to listen. Their messages are dire: there is barely any food, and children have perished as a result.  All of the guards have fled leaving them vulnerable to kidnappings by armed militias who want to use them as human shields or slave laborers, or by human traffickers who torture them to coerce ransom payments from their loved ones abroad. Those who are held in these prisons are regular men, women and children who had no choice but to flee their homes because of violence and persecution in their countries. One man, whose name is withheld to protect his identity, was forced to flee the Darfur region of Sudan when Janjaweed militants burned his village down and massacred his friends and neighbors. He was then kidnapped by smugglers who spent a year torturing him to coerce ransom payment from his family until the Libyan army liberated him last year and brought him directly to prison. Another man from Eritrea fled to save his family’s lives when the regime’s army tried to hold him as a political prisoner without trial. Upon reaching Sudan, he was kidnapped and sold to traffickers who tortured him for money. Finally, they put him in a boat to cross the Mediterranean Sea but the Libyan coast guard intercepted them, sending him directly to prison. He has not seen his wife or son in almost five years, and worries his child will grow up fatherless. The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has only been able to successfully evacuate 500 people so far. This is an important start, but is just a small drop in the bucket. The international community needs to intervene now to save the lives of thousands more people who are still trapped in a war zone. The refugees know that the only solution is to be evacuated - and not just to other prisons in Libya where the conditions are equally dire or worse. A few months ago, I received my first message from a refugee in Libya. The stories he told left me in horror and disbelief, but as I got to know him and the other detainees my fear turned into a need to act. They have asked me to help share their stories with the world, in the hopes that help will come if their stories are heard. And now, I’m asking for your help. By signing this petition, you have the opportunity to send two messages. First, your signature will implore the U.S. State Department to support large-scale evacuations of refugees out of Libya. And second, you will send a message of support and hope the thousands of innocent people trapped in another country’s war zone, to remind them that the world has not abandoned them to die alone.

Andrea Gagne
22,497 supporters
Update posted 3 weeks ago

Petition to James P. McGovern, Department of Homeland Security, Seth Moulton, Elizabeth Warren, Edward J. Markey, Tim Kaine

They Stood with Us: Save Iraqi Family Under Immediate Threat for Working with U.S. Troops

Mohammed, a 65-year-old Iraqi, and his family are in grave danger because of their affiliation with the U.S. military and desperately need to be granted refugee status in the United States before it’s too late. Multiple generations of Mohammed’s family have risked their lives for U.S. forces and to bring freedom and safety to Iraq. Two of his sons served as interpreters for the U.S. Army, and his brother interpreted for the Marine Corps. All three of them had their lives threatened, and one son was shot in the face by militia. Mohammed’s brother was shot, killed, and left dead in a dumpster when the militia found out about his work. Please sign my petition asking the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to expedite processing of the family’s refugee case that was approved approved over a year and a half ago on a conditional basis.  Three of Mohammed’s children (the two interpreter brothers and one of their sisters) have already been resettled in recognition of their sacrifices for the United States. But Mohammed, his wife, and his three other children (including a 11-year-old daughter) remain in Iraq, where they are in hiding due to their history of support for the U.S. and the deteriorating security situation in Iraq.  While they wait for their case to be finalized, they remain a prime target for terrorist organizations.  After over seven years of vetting, they continue to fear for their lives and the risk of being them being killed because of their affiliation with the U.S. is increased the longer their case is delayed. Mohammed and his family firmly believe in the importance of U.S. national security – the family collectively made the decision to defend it at great personal risk.      Yet, in November of 2016, the family received a devastating denial of their refugee case with no explanation.  American citizens rallied behind the family and over 22,000 signatures were gathered on Change.org asking USCIS to review the decision in light of the sacrifices the family has made for the U.S.  USCIS considered the entirety of the evidence and made a wrong right by overturning their previous denial.  We are incredibly grateful for the USCIS officials who took a hard look at the case and put this family back on track for refugee resettlement to the US.  However, it is important to remember that the ordeal is not over until the day the family safely escapes Iraq, lands stateside, and clears customs.    Mohammed and his family have been through enough.  They have had family members killed and wounded and they have had their family torn apart.  All of this is because of their loyalty to the U.S. It is time to bring the rest of the family to new home in the U.S.  They deserve to be reunited and should no longer fear daily for their lives.  Sign my petition to ask USCIS to finalize their case.  We made a promise to protect this family. We cannot let this family die at the hands of our common enemy.

Peter Farley
136,429 supporters
Update posted 1 month ago

Petition to U.S. House of Representatives

Wildlife is at stake: Tell the House to reject Trump’s border wall!

As soon as February 2019, work will be underway to build the first phase of Trump’s border wall across the U.S. and Mexico border. The wall will not only drive immigrants into riskier areas, it will devastate threatened species - like the monarch butterfly. Once constructed, it will bulldoze right through the most vibrant butterfly sanctuary in the U.S., the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas. Visitors can expect to see up to 60 different types of butterflies on any given day. This sanctuary is right on the border with Mexico - a perfect meeting point along the monarch butterfly migration path, and it’s set to have construction crews arrive next year to build the wall. The wall will devastate one of North America’s most vital pollinators - the monarch butterfly. It will also devastate big cats, reptiles, and other animals who regularly migrate between the U.S. and Mexico. The clock is ticking, tell the House to reject all funding for Trump’s border wall - wildlife is at stake. Countless unique ecosystems and protected areas in the lower Rio Grande Valley are under threat. A recent Supreme Court ruling gave the Trump Administration the authority to waive 28 federal laws, including the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act. This ruling gives the administration a green-light to start construction on 33-miles worth of border wall right through the National Butterfly Center and other protected areas along the Rio Grande Valley. The administration also has the ability to use eminent domain laws to take public and private land without trial or compensation to build this wall. This is only some of the damage the first phase of the wall will cause. If there are no funds for the next phase, it can’t be built. Tell the House not to fund this wall! The number of monarch butterflies are dwindling, just in California there’s been a 90% drop in some areas! That’s why in 2014, petitions went to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to protect the monarch butterfly under the Endangered Species Act. In 2019, USFWS will decide if the monarch butterfly will be protected. This unique and vital keystone species could be wiped out. Demand the House stop Trump’s border wall!

Nicole Pelton
7,118 supporters
Started 2 months ago

Petition to Donald J. Trump

Support refugees by returning the threshold to our previous commitment

The United States has admitted and resettled more than 3 million refugees since the Refugee Act of 1980 was passed. Under the Trump administration, the refugee admissions threshold has been making a steady decline. The refugee admission threshold has plummeted from 110,000 in 2016 to 30,000 in 2019. Refugees are being displaced to developing countries that lack the resources and protection ALL refugees deserve. The United States has the resources necessary to protect refugee families and alleviate the overcrowding in other host countries. “The bosom of America is open to receive not only the Opulent and respectable Stranger but the oppressed and persecuted of all Nations and Religions, whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges if by decency and propriety of conduct they appear to merit the enjoyment.” -George Washington, President of the United States (December 2, 1783) Refugees are fleeing from their homes to escape Persecution Rape Community violence Violations of basic human rights The growing numbers of refugees entering developing host countries face overcrowding in camps, exhaustion of necessary resources and spreading of diseases amongst refugees and residents of the host country. On top of the excruciating living conditions, many women and children continue to experience violence and rape in the camps of host countries. “The political solutions to the refugee crisis may be complex, but that does not mean we should abandon our humanity” - Katharine Viner, Journalist Lowering the threshold goes against the administration's declared commitment to help refugees facing persecution. Historically, the U.S has proudly welcomed refugees with a mindset of duty and acceptance. Now, we are allowing politicians to instill fear and misconceptions about foreigners entering our country. Refugees in the United States: DO NOT Burden our economy Threaten our National Security- They are not associated with terrorist or criminal groups Create Overpopulation-The U.S can accommodate more refugees than they do now DO Start businesses, create jobs, pay taxes and repay travel loans Go through an intensive admission process Promote cooperation necessary for counterterrorism strategies. Reduce unexpected arrivals and help regulate immigration. President Trump has decided that less than 30,000 people in dire need have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness this year. By signing this petition to increase the number of refugee admissions in the United States, you are reinstating our commitment to support the world’s most vulnerable individuals, strengthening our economy and national security and embracing diversity and acceptance in our country. LEARN MORE: View the Stats How Refugees Define, Strengthen and Revitalize the United States This Land is Your Land Rohingya Refugee Emergency DR Congo Emergency

Erika Ochoa
326 supporters