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HIAS Blog

  • Senators Push Obama to Welcome More Syrian Refugees

    Jun 10, 2016

    Canada, our neighbor to the north, has roughly one tenth the population of the United States. Yet Canada has welcomed over 26,800 Syrians since November 2015, while the United States has admitted less than 2,000. But some in Washington want to do something about that.
  • What Shavuot Teaches Us About Welcoming the Stranger

    Jun 09, 2016

    Who is this woman who joins the Jewish people, this woman whose story plays a central role in our Shavuot celebrations? Before Ruth joins the Israelite people and converts, she is a stranger.
  • Six Books to Make Your World Refugee Day More Meaningful

    Jun 06, 2016

    World Refugee Day honors the courage, strength and determination of those who are forced to flee persecution, conflict and violence. We asked the refugee experts at HIAS, the oldest refugee protection organization in the world, to tell us which books moved them, inspired them and changed the way they thought about refugee issues.
  • Ecuador Rattled Again in Second Round of Quakes

    Jun 02, 2016

    “People here are still recovering from the last earthquake. To have two more, in a period of just a few hours, was really quite terrifying. People were distressed, both Ecuadorians and refugees here, but we are trying to be a pillar of support for people during this difficult time,” said Sabrina Lustgarten, Director of HIAS Ecuador.
  • HIAS CEO Warns US is "Falling Short" on Refugee Protection in Letter to New York Times

    May 31, 2016

    In a letter to the editor published online on May 31 and in print on June 1 by the New York Times, HIAS President and CEO Mark Hetfield takes a critical look at the Obama administration's record on refugee protection.
  • Ben Saw Refugees on TV and Wanted to Help. What He Learned Next Changed Everything.

    May 31, 2016

    Svitavsky immigrated from St. Petersburg, Russia with her family in 1977. Like many refugees fleeing the Soviet Union at that time, they came with help from HIAS. Yet somehow the topic never came up with her children, who had no idea about their mother’s own refugee story until her son Ben brought up the topic himself.
  • Stakes are High, and Personal, in Supreme Court Immigration Case

    May 25, 2016

    The fate of over 4 million immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers currently residing in the United States is now in the hands of the Supreme Court, writes HIAS Refugee Policy Intern Eden Siskind.
  • From Refugee to Lawyer, Kurt Shaffert Fled WWII and Found His American Dream

    May 23, 2016

    Born in Vienna in 1929 to a Jewish family, Kurt Shaffert and his family fled to America when he was only 10 years old. “When they arrived in New York, they really had nothing,” said Robin Shaffert, Kurt’s daughter. “He never forgot what that was like–and he never forgot the help that his family got from HIAS.”
  • Ukraine Remembers the Crimean Tatar Genocide

    May 20, 2016

    In 1944, nearly 200,000 Crimean Tatars, a Turkic ethnic minority, were unjustly accused of aiding and abetting the Nazi regime and ordered by Joseph Stalin to be forcibly expelled from their homeland to remote areas of the Soviet Union. On May 18, 2016, Ukraine held ceremonies to remember the Crimean Tatar people who lost their homes and their lives.
  • HIAS Statement to the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration

    May 19, 2016

    Comments regarding the U.S. refugee admissions program for fiscal year 2017, submitted by HIAS to the U.S. State Department's Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration.

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