ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — As the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan continues, some lawmakers and advocates are calling on the United States government and New York State to welcome more refugees.
“We are fallen down, and we really need help to be resettled,” said former interpreter Dr. Ahmad Wali.
Immigration advocates are calling for robust support from the federal government and New York State to help Afghan allies seeking refuge.
Earlier this week Governor Kathy Hochul tweeted that Refugee Services and the New York State Office for New Americans “are both ready to assist those seeking to resettle in NY.”
Democrat Assemblywoman Pat Fahy says refugees are looking for safety, job opportunities and education. She also says they have played a critical part throughout history in strengthening diversity, particularly in Upstate New York.
“These are cities that we’re seeing serious population loss as we have struggled to compete with the West and the South. But, it is our refugee and immigrant communities that are opening up small businesses, that are helping to repopulate our cities and renovate our aging housing infrastructure,” Fahy said.
Republican State Senator Joseph Griffo has a bill called the “repaying our Afghan allies act. “It would “provide for payment to Afghan allies who assisted our service members… and who need to now resettle in the United States.”