PNS Daily News - December 11, 2019 

U.S. House to vote on two articles of impeachment; $1.4 trillion in planned oil & gas development said to put the world in "bright red level" of climate crisis; anti-protest legislation moves forward in Ohio; "forest farming" moves forward in Appalachia; and someone's putting cowboy hats on pigeons in Nevada.

2020Talks - December 11, 2019 

18 years ago today, China joined the WTO. Now, China's in a trade war with the U.S. Also, House Democrats and the Trump administration made a deal to move forward with the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement.

Resettlement Experts Say Syrian Refugees Pose No Risk to U.S.

Immigration advocates say Syrian refugees hoping to resettle in the U.S. pose no risk to Americans. Credit: ranjithd/
Immigration advocates say Syrian refugees hoping to resettle in the U.S. pose no risk to Americans. Credit: ranjithd/
November 19, 2015

NEW YORK – While more than half of the nation's governors oppose allowing Syrian refugees into their states, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo welcomes them and says not doing so goes against American values.

States protesting their admission say Syrians are a security threat and cite reports that at least one suspect in the Paris attacks may have entered Europe with the thousands of Syrians fleeing their homeland.

But many resettlement advocates, including Stacie Blake, director of government and community relations with the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, are refuting those claims and point to the thorough vetting process refugees must undergo.

"The process takes on average two years because of the intensive number of steps and interviews and background checks and screening procedures, finger prints, iris scans, etc.," she points out.

Blake says people who go through the U.S. refugee program are the most vetted people who enter the country and says the U.S. has the strongest refugee security screening process in the world.

New York houses some of the largest Syrian communities in the country.

Christina Chang, immigration policy manager for the New York Immigration Coalition, says community-based organizations offer effective integration programs many European countries don't, which leads to greater assimilation and success within the U.S.

"It may be like a failure of integration policies there where the communities are left in ghettos and here in the U.S. we don't do that,” she stresses. “We have these great organizations making sure that these refugees are helped to integrate into our society."

Of the 4 million Syrians who've fled their country, the U.S. has only accepted about 1,500 of them since the Syrian crisis began in 2011. The Obama administration says 10,000 Syrian refugees will be allowed entry next year.

Nia Hamm, Public News Service - NY