TRENTON – A joint resolution sponsored by Senate Commerce Committee Chairwoman Nellie Pou that would designate June 20th of each year as “World Refugee Day in New Jersey was approved by the full Senate today.
“This resolution will draw attention to the plight of refugees every June 20, World Refugee Day,” said Senator Pou (D-Bergen/Passaic). “America does not have a spotless reputation when it comes to welcoming refugees. In the lead-up to World War II, we did not do enough for Jews fleeing the Nazis. Sadly, we are not living up to our ideals today. Whether it is the plight of Syrians escaping certain death in their native country or women with children crossing our southern border attempting to flee domestic violence, we do not recognize the danger in turning them away. And in light of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recent decision to not allow victims of domestic violence or gang violence to seek asylum in the United States, we must speak up on this issue. Lives depend on it.”
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has determined that 1.19 million refugees are in need of immediate resettlement. According to the United Nations, every minute 24 people are fleeing terror, persecution, armed conflicts and human rights abuses in Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Central America and other regions.
The joint resolution, SJR-85, was approved by a vote of 34-0.