Federal government identifies Phoenix as the best city for Afghan refugees


Federal agencies have designated Phoenix as an ideal place for Afghan refugees to resettle.

The US government is helping thousands of Afghans find new homes after fleeing the country currently controlled by the Taliban. The governors and mayors from New York to California have expressed their desire to help these refugees.

Governor Doug Ducey and Speaker of the House Rusty Bowers said refugees have homes in Arizona and issued a joint statement on August 19.

“Despite the president’s unresponsiveness to growing tensions in the Middle East, Arizona has acknowledged the service of thousands of Afghans in the last two decades,” the statement said. “When refugees come to states across the country and find homes, we welcome them to states full of opportunities and choices. We work closely with federal and state authorities to provide them with security in Arizona. We are cooperating with. “

Duchy and Bowers said the Arizona Refugee Resettlement Administration “worked with refugees to secure housing and employment, enroll in English classes as needed, connect them with medical resources, and their children (Tullivan-School). I will enroll in. “

While other states, California and New York, have a high concentration of Afghan communities, the Consular Affairs Bureau of the US State Department lists Phoenix as the most suitable place in the country for those seeking resettlement.

The list of 19 cities is sorted by “reasonable living costs, housing availability, employment opportunities, strong resettlement services and support”.

Refugees working in the bureau will receive a monthly benefit of $ 1,100 for the first three months of their arrival in the country.

California has communities like Fremont’s Little Kabul, known for being the most concentrated in Afghanistan in the country, but the agency is discouraging them from settling there.

“Note that living costs and housing availability can vary significantly across the United States,” the agency said. “The metropolitan area of ​​Washington, DC, which includes some cities in northern Virginia and California, is a very expensive place to live and can be difficult to find reasonable housing and employment. The benefits of resettlement you receive may not comfortably cover your living expenses in these areas. “

Update: The agency removed the list of 19 cities from the resettlement page over the weekend. A State Department spokesperson said the change was “to maximize potential placement options and flexibility,” and that as the placement process becomes more normalized, it will eventually use the list again. Officials argue that the list is for self-selection of resettlement locations if refugees do not have close ties in the United States.

Meanwhile, they said the agency would continue to work with nine resettlement partners and affiliates across the country to resettle refugees.

By Cole Lauterbach

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