July 14, 2023
BALTIMORE, MD — Today, World Relief praises the bipartisan re-introduction of an Afghan Adjustment Act in both the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives and urges swift Congressional passage of the bill.
This important bill acknowledges the plight of Afghan nationals who faced an urgent threat of persecution under the Taliban, including many who have worked tirelessly alongside the United States military, diplomatic missions, and non-governmental organizations, risking their lives to support the cause of peace and stability. These individuals have been our allies and partners in promoting shared values such as freedom, justice, and human dignity. We are grateful that they have found refuge in the United States – but they still have only temporary legal protections in the U.S. that bear expiration dates.
“In the nearly two years that have passed since Afghanistan fell to the Taliban, World Relief has partnered with churches and communities to serve more than 6,000 Afghans who fled persecution,” said Myal Greene, president and CEO of World Relief. “Americans of all backgrounds have eagerly welcomed Afghan neighbors. The Afghan Adjustment Act is an opportunity for Congress to convey the American public’s commitment to Afghan parolees by allowing them to apply for permanent legal status, relieving them of the fear and stress associated with living in legal limbo.”
Over 70,000 Afghans were evacuated to the U.S. in the weeks following the fall of Kabul nearly two years ago. The need to support their full integration continues, as many Afghans remain in legal limbo, with their parole and work authorization bearing expiration dates. The Afghan Adjustment Act would allow Afghans with parole to apply for Lawful Permanent Resident status without needing to rely upon woefully backlogged legal processes for asylum or Special Immigrant Visas. The bill also appropriately subjects Afghans to additional vetting and screening before they would be granted permanent legal status.
“We are grateful for the strong bipartisan leadership in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, demonstrating that Congress works together on common sense policy solutions,” said Matthew Soerens, Vice President of Advocacy & Policy for World Relief. “We urge Congress to act immediately to pass it into law, heeding the voices of Afghan allies and of the many people who have helped to welcome new Afghan neighbors, including thousands of local churches that have stepped up to build communities of love and welcome to receive them.”
World Relief invites all who care about the wellbeing of Afghans to urge their Members of Congress to support the Afghan Adjustment Act. An online tool to do so is available at https://worldrelief.org/advocate/support-the-afghan-adjustment-act/.
To download a PDF version of this release, click here.
About World Relief
World Relief is a global Christian humanitarian organization whose mission is to empower the local church to serve the most vulnerable. The organization was founded in the aftermath of World War II to respond to the urgent humanitarian needs of war-torn Europe. Since then, for over 75 years, across 100 countries, World Relief has partnered with local churches and communities to develop sustainable, locally-driven solutions to some of the world’s greatest problems. To learn more, visit worldrelief.org.