(WASHINGTON, D.C., 11/18/15) â€“ The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is calling on all Americans to contact their elected representatives to urge them to reject the growing trend of state governors and members of Congress expressing opposition to the entry of Syrian refugees.
Currently, 30 governors have made public statements or declarations in opposition to their stateâ€™s acceptance of Syrian refugees. Republicans in Congress are also expected to introduce a bill that would require additional certification requirements for Syrian and Iraqi refugees that would in effect halt resettlement programs. Â Â Â
However, it is currently being reported by European Union officials that last Fridayâ€™s attacks in Paris was actually conducted by European nationals and not by Daesh (ISIS) terrorists who hid among Syrian refugees.
Under the U.S. Constitution states have no legal authority to oppose the federal governmentâ€™s resettlement of Syrianâ€™s who are granted refugee status. Doing so would amount to discrimination and be illegal under various American laws.
While some governors have threatened to withhold or restrict state funding of their refugee resettlement programs, they are not able to discriminate against specific nationalities, including Syrians. States are also prohibited from stopping houses of worship and other non-profits charities from coordinating with the federal government to provide similar services.Â
â€œState governors and members of Congress should know better than to use the tragedy in Paris to spread doubt about our governmentâ€™s own ability to process Syrian refugees,â€ said CAIR Government Affairs Manager Robert McCaw.
â€œRefugees entering the United States undergo one of the worldâ€™s most demanding background and security screenings â€“ a review that usually takes up to two years and involves approval from the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, Department of Defense, and other agencies.â€
Yesterday in a statement, CAIR decried state governors for their â€˜un-Americanâ€™ refusal to accept Syrian refugees.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Manager Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448,Â firstname.lastname@example.org, CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726,Â email@example.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Nabeelah Naeem, 202-341-4171,firstname.lastname@example.org