Saturday, April 28, 2012

Refugee Status

Recently, I was talking with the main woman of the office named Chris, who is a paralegal, but also the livelihood of the entire office. She was telling me about Immigration for refugees and how it is very different from the typical means of immigration. The conversation came up after I was telling her about one of my friends who came here from Syria (he was actually Iraqi though). He told me the story of how Shia radicals were killing off many Sunni men in Iraq, and he was friends with a shia man who knew of a list of names of people the radicals were going to capture and kill that day. His friend had called him while he was at university and told him that his name was on the list, so my friend in fear of his life was forced to immediately catch a bus to Syria, without even preparing a bag for himself. Later, he finished university in Syria and came to the US as a refugee. Issues of Asylum are very important in immigration, because America is often seen as a safe haven for people who fear for their lives due to the political situation of their government, or uncontrolled radicals in the country. It is interesting to see how our government helps these people upon their arrival. Many of them receive public welfare upon their arrival. Interestingly, other immigrants have to file affidavits of support with their visa applications to show that they will not be on public welfare upon their arrival. I obviously understand why, and think that our government does well to those in need of asylum. 

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