Author(s): Pablo Bose, Lucas Grigri, & Gillian Tiley January 2019 Abstract: Our project considers the dynamics of refugee resettlement in small cities and towns in the US. As part of understanding the broader context of such processes, we also look at the global refugee regime – the numbers of refugees, forced migrants and asylum seekers on the move, acceptance rates in various countries within the international system, and the experiences of refugees in different countries of resettlement. The trend within the US over recent decades has been the placement of increasing numbers of refugees outside of the traditional ‘gateway’ or immigrant destination metropolitan centers such as New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, especially as the US resettlement program expanded during the Obama administration (Singer, Hardwick and Brettell, 2008). Yet refugee resettlement and immigration as a whole have faced a significant backlash before, during and since the 2016 Presidential election in the US, with particular scrutiny given to the numbers of refugees given sanctuary in the US and their countries of origin. In its first two years in office, the Trump administration has slashed the numbers of approved refugees to a third of their total under the previous regime (RPC, 2018). Such a backlash is not unique to the US; indeed, anti-immigrant sentiment, policies and practices have become common worldwide, including in many of the countries that have previously been an important part of the global refugee system. For many populist and right-wing political parties and movements in the Global North, nativism, xenophobia and anti-immigrant policies have been central to their policy platforms and their appeal. Even the Nordic countries, historically among the most liberal, welcoming democracies in the world, have not been immune to this trend (Greve et al., 2017).
RRSC–PR8: Changes to the Temporary Protected Status Program in the United States Author(s): Pablo Bose, Lucas Grigri, & Sarah Barrett August 2018 Overview: For recipients of temporary protection, their right to remain in new countries is extremely tenuous and leaves them as vulnerable to changes in political leadership and popular sentiment as to the conditions that forced them to flee in the first place. And for many, it means profound insecurity – unsure about their ability to stay in a temporary home and unable to return to their home country safely. Many who have received some form of temporary protected status worldwide (as opposed to the more long-lasting or ‘durable’ solutions of third-country resettlement, refugee status, or asylum protections) now find such programs progressively curtailed in the face of a global backlash against migrants (especially poorer migrants). Such has also been the experience of TPS grantees in the US under the current administration.
RRSC–PR9: Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Canada Author(s): Brenna Foley, Pablo Bose, & Lucas Grigri August 2018 Overview: As the world confronts an unprecedented forced migration crisis with over 65 million individuals displaced or seeking asylum (UNHCR, 2018), one of the most recent and well-known cases is Syria. Not only has the Syrian civil war
produced a large number of forced migrants, the prospect of resettlement in third countries has resulted in a serious backlash against refugees in many parts of the world. This can be attributed to a number of factors – rising radicalization and terrorist attacks worldwide, increasing support for right-wing political movements, xenophobia and Islamophobia in western countries, and various kinds of instability across the global system. While in many Western countries refugee resettlement and the acceptance of Syrian refugees has become controversial – and has often resulted in a narrowing of or ban on admissions – in Canada, the opposite is true.
RRSC–PR6: Refugee Resettlement Trends in the West Author(s): Pablo Bose & Lucas Grigri May 2018 Overview: This report focuses on refugee resettlement trends from FY2012-2016 for the West region of the United States. Historically, the Western United States has had extensive experience with migration, primarily with immigrants from Asia and Latin America (Gutierrez, 2013; Zong & Batalova 2016). Among these states, California has the largest foreign-born population, which also leads the entire United States, while states such as Arizona and Washington also have sizable immigrant populations (American Immigration Council, 2017). Refugee resettlement in this region is focused on many of these areas with large pre-existing foreign populations, but also extends to cities in eastern Washington, Idaho, and Utah that have less experience with immigration historically.
RRSC–PR5: Refugee Resettlement Trends in the South-Central US Author(s): Pablo Bose & Lucas Grigri May 2018 Overview: This report focuses on refugee resettlement trends from FY2012-2016 for the South-Central region of the United States. Within this particular region, there are some contrasting histories of migration. For example, Texas has a long history of immigration, particularly since 1970, when its immigrant population increased more than 400% over the following two decades and continued to rise through our study period (Bouvier & Martin, 1995; White et al., 2015). Missouri’s experience with migration, on the other hand, has come in more recent decades, especially since 1990 (Fennelly, 2012). All of the states featured in this region, however, have in common that the majority of their immigrant population comes from Latin America, although Texas also has a sizeable Asian population (American Immigration Council, 2017). Each state’s unique history with migration is important to consider when analyzing the effects of refugee resettlement in these areas.
RRSC–PR4: Refugee Resettlement Trends in the Midwest Author(s): Pablo Bose & Lucas Grigri May 2018 Overview: This report focuses on refugee resettlement trends from FY2012-2016 for the Midwest region of the United States. Historically, the Midwest has been less of a destination for immigrants than states along either coast or the southern border (Fennelly 2012). Outside of Illinois, all states are home to foreign-born populations below the national average. Many of these states, however, have seen significant rises in the proportion of foreign-born residents in their more recent history (especially since 1990) in large part due to state resettlement programs (Fennelly, 2008; Rehwalt, 2015).
RRSC–PR3: Refugee Resettlement Trends in the Southeast Author(s): Pablo Bose & Lucas Grigri April 2018 Overview: This report focuses on refugee resettlement trends from FY2012-2016 for the Southeast region of the United States. This region has been a key focus for many scholars in recent decades due in part to a significant growth in the foreign-born population, especially in terms of Latino labor migration as well as other forms of immigration. Studies have looked at the impact of such demographic change at multiple scales, from metropolitan regions like Raleigh-Durham, NC, Nashville, TN, and Atlanta, GA, to smaller cities as in the focus of our research, or in rural regions as well (Smith and Furuseth, 2006; Nelson and Nelson, 2011; Drever and Blue, 2010; Massey, 2008). In this report, we look at how refugee resettlement relates to this dynamic.
Overview: The past three years have witnessed many upheavals in refugee resettlement patterns in the US as well as globally. Refugee placements have been affected both by the worldwide forced migration crisis – with the highest numbers of displaced seen since the end of WWII – and by a serious backlash against refugees in many of the nations that have long served as a backbone for third-country resettlement. The current US administration has set as its FY2018 targets for refugee acceptance the lowest numbers seen since the inception of the modern program in 1980. In this project report we briefly place into context what these reduced numbers mean historically in terms of established ceilings and admissions domestically and in relation to the specific circumstances that have driven displacement globally during the same time periods.
Overview: This report focuses on refugee resettlement trends from FY2012-2016 for the Northeast region of the United States. We analyze resettlement on a regional scale, looking at cities listed as official resettlement sites within each region in terms of the absolute number of refugees approved for settlement in each site and how that figure compares to the city ’ s overall population and foreign-born population. The existing practice is that the US federal government announces an upper limit (a ‘ ceiling ’) on refugees it will accept for each fiscal year, a number that is then revised based on both local capacity and global conditions – such as new or changing migration crises.
Overview: This report summarizes US refugee resettlement trends from FY2012-2016. We analyze resettlement at the national scale, looking at the country as a whole by comparing each state’s settlement capacities as determined by the federal government and its partner resettlement agencies on an annual basis. The federal government announces an upper limit (a ‘ceiling’) on refugees it will accept for each fiscal year, a number that is then revised dependent on the capacities approved for each individual resettlement location as well as the shifting forced migration conditions globally after that initial allocation.