Many Afghan refugees will never leave NJ
New Jersey is prepared to house as many as 10,000 refugees for up to a year at a military run tent city in Burlington County. Many had supported the U.S. mission and forces in Afghanistan for the past 20 years.
The refugees can request to be sent to places where they have close friends or relatives, and the White House has been attempting to accelerate efforts to move them off military bases and into those areas.
The administration has been informing Governor's how many families they can expect to be receiving. Despite the thousands being housed in New Jersey, the Associated Press reports only 535 families are expected to make the Garden State their permanent home.
More than 2,000 families will be sent to neighboring states. New York State has been told to expect 1,143 families. 995 families will be resettled in Pennsylvania and 30 in Delaware.
The resettlement efforts, however, are being complicated by a delay in Congress to grant these families official refugee status.
Upon arrival in the U.S., the families all have legal status. They will be given $1,225 to help with things like rent and food. Because they do not have official refugee status, they cannot apply for things like food stamps and government cash assistance. They are being provided health care at the military bases where they are being housed, but will not have access to government paid health care when they are resettled.
The White House has asked Congress for $6.4 billion in emergency funding to support resettlement efforts, and approval of the expenditure is expected.
Meanwhile, several support groups in New Jersey and around the country are trying to raise funds to help relocate Afghan families as quickly as possible. Here is how you can help.
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