Refugees, Welcome to North Dakota

lutheran social services
lutheran social services
GABBY HARTZE | THE SPECTRUM
Lutheran Social Services expects about 500 people to resettle in its program this year.

According to a recent report by the United Nations agency, nearly 60 million refugees live in the world, half of which are children.

Upon being processed with “refugee status,” the U.S. has helped resettle nearly 3 million refugees from all over the world since 1975.

“Refugees” leave their country out of fear of persecution. While migrants consciously make the decision to move to another country, refugees are forced to escape the harsh conditions of their environment, typically due to political upheaval.

Recently, North Dakota has seen an influx of refugees from Syria and Somalia due to their countries’ civil wars.

For this reason among many others, The Spectrum would like to applaud North Dakota State and North Dakota as a whole for its efforts in welcoming the hundreds of men, women and children who have come to Fargo in hope for safety.

We would like to acknowledge Lutheran Social Services and its community partners for their overwhelming support of refugee resettlement.

With the implementation of the refugee resettlement program through the state’s Department of Human Services, these people are assisted with potential grants, medical assistance and support services such as vocational training and employment services.

During an early August interview with Fargo’s Forum, Lutheran Social Services CEO Jessica Thomasson claimed despite the public predictions, she doesn’t expect this year to be any different than previous years in the number of people they resettle within their program, approximately 500.

A recent online petition called for the ceasing of Fargo-Moorhead’s refugee resettlement arguing that resources should be disbursed to the area’s already disadvantaged.

Thomasson rejected this notion and does not have any plans to discontinue resettlement processes.

As one of the world’s most powerful countries, we are doing the right thing in welcoming and providing to families seeking self-sufficiency from their unstable, native countries.

The Spectrum is proud of our community’s majority voice calling for a commitment to helping refugees around the world, and we encourage its persistence for years to come.

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