The U.S. State Department informed Congress this week that the U.S. anticipates 15,000 refugees to be admitted and resettled during fiscal year 2021, the lowest number allowed since 1980. Catholic groups told CNA that they believe the U.S. can and should accept more refugees in 2021, rather than fewer.
In a media note posted Sept. 30, the State Department said the U.S. anticipates receiving more than 300,000 new refugee and asylum claims in fiscal year 2021, and that the department already has a backlog of 1.1 million claims.
About 9,000 refugees entered the US in fiscal year 2020. The administration had planned to allow 18,000, but the coronavirus pandemic led President Trump to suspend indefinitely the asylum system in March.