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World Relief Responds to President Trump’s Declaration of a National Emergency at the Border

February 15, 2019                                                

Lauren Carl

World Relief Responds to President Trump’s Declaration of a National Emergency at the Border

Baltimore, Md. – Today, President Trump declared the situation at the border a national emergency, invoking presidential emergency powers to increase border security. While appreciative of his commitment to securing the border, World Relief urges the President to pursue broad-based immigration reform in partnership with Congress.

While avoiding a second shutdown, the president pivoted from seeking a cooperative solution with Congress to escalating the status of the situation at the border to that of a national emergency.

World Relief President Scott Arbeiter commented, “Securing the southern border is essential. But finding a true solution to the complex situation facing our nation’s immigration system requires all parties working in cooperation. We’re concerned that by declaring a national emergency, not only has the president opened an avenue for bypassing true solutions, but also shortchanged those stuck in the immigration system and those seeking to come to the U.S. who need true legislative solutions. Our decades-long failure to find a solution to this issue has put too many children and families at risk, precipitated government shutdowns and polarized the nation on issues that once united us.”

“The president cited violence at the border and the influx of drugs as justification for expediting funds for a wall,” commented World Relief Vice President of Advocacy and Policy Jenny Yang. “We have in fact seen a lower level of crime from immigrants of any legal status than the overall native-born American population, and Border Patrol has reported a 45 percent decrease in apprehensions at the border between FY2000-2018. We urge the president to consider the devastating circumstances driving so many to pursue the legitimate option of seeking asylum legally in the U.S. and offer clear-cut pathways to become legal residents.”

World Relief C.E.O. Tim Breene commented, “World Relief advocates a comprehensive and bipartisan solution to the immigration challenges facing the U.S. – not one solved through invoking emergency powers. The president has had the opportunity to offer once-and-for-all fixes for those in limbo in Temporary Protected Status or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals programs and those who have otherwise arrived in the U.S. and desire to become lawful residents and eventually citizens.”

Download the PDF version of this press release.


About World Relief:

World Relief is a global Christian humanitarian organization that seeks to overcome violence, poverty and injustice. Through love in action, we bring hope, healing and restoration to millions of the world’s most vulnerable women, men and children through vital and sustainable programs in disaster response, health and child development, economic development and peacebuilding, as well as refugee and immigration services in the U.S. For 75 years, we’ve partnered with churches and communities, currently across more than 20 countries, to provide relief from suffering and help people rebuild their lives.

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