Evers, Green Bay mayor Genrich welcome refugees to state, city of Green Bay

Local News

Starting in the new year, the Trump administration is limiting the amount of refugees that can resettle in the United States to 18,000.

Last week Green Bay mayor Eric Genrich sent a letter to the U.S. Department of State, declaring Green Bay would consider itself a refugee resettlement area.

Wisconsin governor Tony Evers sent his letter this week, he too is in favor of resettlement in the state.

“Green Bay is one of the greatest places I’ve ever seen and I like it,” says refugee, now U.S. citizen Khalid Mohamud. “I’d like it to stay in Green Bay for my entire life. That’s what I’m dreaming now.”

Khalid, like other refugees and immigrants at Literacy Green Bay, made Green Bay their home because of the people.

In Green Bay mayor Eric Genrich’s letter to the Department of State he says, “Green Bay is a city known throughout the world for our hospitality…this ethic of hospitality also goes much deeper and is rooted in the cultural and faith traditions of this area and in the foundational values of our nation.”

“That’s what I like about Green Bay,” says Khalid. “If you like something, you’re going to go to find it and there’s going to be great people to give you a hand to help you.”

One of those helping hands includes Catholic Charities in Allouez.

Laurie Martinez and her team help refugees and immigrants find language training along with needed legal counsel and jobs.

“We’ve noticed in the past couple of years as well that there are many employers that are specifically looking for refugees within their company,” says Martinez.

But resettling also comes with some dark clouds.

Many immigrants or refugees are not here with their families.

Limiting the number of refugees to the states lessens their chances of getting here.

“Some of the refugees or former refugees that we worked with have other family members that are still overseas, probably in a refugee camp that are waiting to reunite with their family members,” says Martinez. “I know that some of them have been waiting several years, so it’s hard for them to understand what is the delay.”

If you know a refugee or immigrant resettling in the area, Literacy Green Bay and Catholic Charities offer tutoring and/or other services for migrant peoples.

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