Following an executive order from President Donald Trump requiring approval from state and local politicians to allow refugees to be resettled, more than 2,600 evangelicals called on their state governors to open their borders to refugees. [h/t Christian Post]
The coalition, led by faith-based refugee resettlement agency World Relief and the Evangelical Immigration Table, sent a joint letter to 15 governors urging their consent for refugee resettlement in accordance with Trump’s executive order from earlier this year. World Relief says that only 17 of the nation’s 50 state governors have signaled that they will allow refugee resettlement so far.
Almost 300 evangelicals signed a letter sent to Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, who consented to resettlement. 136 evangelicals signed a letter sent to North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper, who likewise agreed. Letters have also been sent from evangelicals in California, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.
The letter argues that allowing refugee resettlement is both humane and effective.
“Refugees can best integrate into the U.S. and quickly become financially self-sufficient when supported both by their family and by a local resettlement office,” the letter reads. “As our state’s governor, we urge you to keep the option open for local communities within [the state] to continue to receive newly arrived refugees. As always, we are committed to praying for you as you lead our state.”
According to the executive order, governors must notify the State Department of their attention to allow refugees to resettle by January 21 of 2020. However, the executive order is currently the subject of a lawsuit leveled by three faith-based organizations, arguing that the order “conflicts with the statutory scheme enacted by Congress and core principles of federalism.”