Press Releases

Auburn Theological Seminary to Honor HIAS VP for Leadership

Posted on Fri, Apr 11, 2014 at 12:15 pm

Rabbi Jennie Rosenn to be recognized at annual event alongside women leaders including Chelsea Clinton and Rev. Dr. Jacqueline J. Lewis

(New York, NY) – On Wednesday, April 23, faith leaders and social justice advocates will gather to honor Rabbi Jennie Rosenn, who serves as HIAS’ first ever Vice President for Community Engagement, alongside fellow leaders of faith and justice at the 18th annual Auburn Seminary Lives of Commitment Awards Benefit Breakfast.

Rabbi Rosenn recently joined HIAS, the global Jewish nonprofit that


In Statement to House Judiciary Committee, HIAS Calls For Refugee Protections

Posted on Tue, Feb 11, 2014 at 21:41 pm

(Washington, D.C.) – At today’s hearing in the U.S. House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security, “Asylum Fraud: Abusing America’s Compassion?” Melanie Nezer, vice president for Policy and Advocacy at HIAS, submitted a written statement for the official hearing record. Below is her full testimony.


Throughout our history, America has been defined by our generosity toward those who seek a safe haven from oppression. An asylum system that is fair, effective and humane honors our country’s history and reflects


HIAS Applauds New Common Sense Approach to Terrorism Inadmissibility Grounds for Refugees

Posted on Thu, Feb 06, 2014 at 10:55 am

(New York, NY) – The Patriot Act’s overly broad definitions of “terrorist activity” and “terrorist group” that have unjustly prevented thousands of refugees—who do not pose a threat to the United States—from receiving protection in the United States will no longer be applied to certain refugees, according to an announcement Wednesday by Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson.

Terrorism-related inadmissibility grounds—known as the “TRIG” bars—affect thousands of refugees who have fought oppression around the


HIAS Responds to GOP Immigration Principles

Posted on Fri, Jan 31, 2014 at 12:10 pm

(New York, NY) – HIAS today welcomed the GOP Principles on Immigration Reform as an important first step toward addressing the broken U.S. immigration system. The principles provide a general outline of standards regarding border security, interior enforcement, reforms to the legal immigration system, and a way to address the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants currently living in the U.S.

Mark Hetfield, HIAS' president & CEO, was "encouraged to see Republican leadership finally discussing this issue in a serious


HIAS Celebrates Government Spending Bill and Extension of the Lautenberg Amendment

Posted on Fri, Jan 17, 2014 at 11:17 am

(New York, NY) – HIAS, the global Jewish nonprofit that protects refugees, celebrates the recent passage of legislation that will fund the government through September 2014. Critically important to the Jewish community is the inclusion of a one-year extension of the Lautenberg Amendment, which previously expired on September 30, 2013. This legislation, which facilitates the resettlement of religious minority groups—including Jews seeking to flee Iran and the former Soviet Union (FSU)—will now be extended through September 30, 2014 and, as


Social Justice Dream Team to Lead HIAS

Posted on Tue, Dec 17, 2013 at 12:45 pm

(New York, NY) – HIAS, the leading international Jewish organization dedicated to welcoming and protecting the rights of refugees, has announced three additions to its senior management team with leaders from the Jewish social justice world, who will join recently appointed President and CEO Mark Hetfield.

Opening a new chapter in the nonprofit’s 130-year history, Rabbi Jennie Rosenn is assuming the newly created role of Vice President for Community Engagement; Riva Silverman will join HIAS as Vice President for External Affairs;


HIAS Spearheads Day of Action to Oppose the "SAFE" Act

Posted on Tue, Oct 15, 2013 at 10:15 am

(New York, NY) – HIAS, the global Jewish nonprofit that protects refugees, is leading an effort by the We Were Strangers, Too Jewish campaign for immigration reform to ensure the Jewish voice is heard in opposition to the "Strengthen and Fortify Enforcement (SAFE)" Act, H.R. 2778, approved by the House of Representatives' Judiciary Committee in June 2013. HIAS is organizing a day of action on Thursday, October 17, and encourages the Jewish community to express opposition to this


HIAS Applauds Israel Supreme Court For Striking Down Lengthy Detention For Asylum Seekers

Posted on Mon, Sep 16, 2013 at 13:53 pm

(New York, NY) – HIAS, the global Jewish nonprofit that protects refugees, applauds the decision today of Israel’s Supreme Court to strike down the Third Amendment to the Law for the Prevention of Infiltration, which had authorized the prolonged imprisonment of asylum seekers in Israel. Overturning this amendment will result in the freedom of hundreds of men, women, and children who are currently being held in prison-like conditions without trial under the amendment, which was passed in January 2012.

According to


HIAS Urges That We Keep Refugees In Our Prayers As One-Millionth Child Refugee Flees Syria

Posted on Fri, Aug 30, 2013 at 14:05 pm

(New York, NY) – The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) announced last week that one million refugee children have now fled Syria, and two million more children have fled their homes and remain within the country. The majority are under 11 years of age. At the same time, Israel continues to grapple with xenophobia toward 55,000 asylum seekers from sub-Saharan Africa, with some in the Israeli government pledging to deport them all to Uganda after the holidays are


Dale M. Schwartz Elected Chairman of HIAS

Posted on Mon, Jul 01, 2013 at 15:26 pm

(New York, NY) – Dale Schwartz, of Atlanta, Georgia, was this week elected Chairman of the Board of HIAS, the global Jewish nonprofit that protects refugees. An immigration lawyer, he is the twenty-second community leader elected to chair the agency since its founding in the 1880s. His initial term is for one year. He succeeds Marc Silberberg, of New York City, who served as HIAS Chairman from 2010-2013.

Upon his election, Schwartz had the following to say:
“HIAS is in my


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