On Tuesday, House Democrats published their plan to fund a number of federal agencies. The plan includes making sure that Afghans arriving in the U.S. on “humanitarian parole” are entitled to all the same public benefits and services that are typically reserved for those given refugee status.
Specifically, the plan would give “resettlement assistance, entitlement programs, and other benefits” like driver’s licenses and state-issued IDs to the tens of thousands of Afghans in the U.S. on parole. The plan opens the scope of who would be eligible for such benefits to include Afghans who arrive in the U.S. after September 2022 and those who are the spouses or children of newly arrived Afghans.
The plan would throw $21.5 million at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to provide Afghans with “medical support, screening, and other related public health activities.”
Another nearly $1.7 billion would go to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to be used for:
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…grants or contracts with qualified nonprofit organizations to provide culturally and linguistically appropriate services, including wrap-around services during temporary housing and after resettlement, housing assistance, medical assistance, legal assistance, and case management assistance.
About $415 million would go to “migration and refugee assistance” to “address humanitarian needs in, and to assist refugees from, Afghanistan.”
Biden has said he hopes to resettle about 95,000 Afghans across the U.S. over the next 12 months. In a 21-day period from August to September, Biden brought more than 48,000 Afghans to the U.S. for resettlement — a population more than four times that of Jackson, Wyoming.
An initial 37,000 Afghans will be resettled across 46 states. California will get the most Afghans, 5,255, while Texas will have nearly 4,500 Afghans resettled in the state. A total of 18 Republican governors are backing Biden’s resettlement operation.
Already, American taxpayers spend nearly $9 billion every five years on refugees.