Dubuque group ends Refugees Resettlement program

Published: Dec. 20, 2017 at 12:04 AM CST
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A group in Dubuque is ending its work to resettle refugees in Eastern Iowa. Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Dubuque says local and national changes are the reason for ending the program. It's resettled refugees for 77 years.

The Archdiocese says the main reason is that the federal government reduced the number of refugees who can come to the U.S. from 110,000 to 45,000.

Also, the government established rules that now require all settlement sites to help at least 100 refugees a year. The organization says there are enough other local places resettling people that it can't reach that quota.

In a press release, the Executive Director said this. “Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Dubuque has been resettling refugees from all over the world in Eastern Iowa since 1940, primarily in Cedar Rapids and Waterloo,” stated Tracy Morrison, Executive Director. “It’s a loss for our entire community.”

“Our faith guides us to believe in the dignity of all persons and the need to protect the most vulnerable, especially refugees and migrants. It is with a heavy heart that we announce the ending of this ministry,” said Archbishop Michael Jackels.

Morrison also said they've enjoyed meeting and getting to know the customs and traditions of the people they've helped.

She said, "the one tradition I would say that crosses all nationalities is love and kindness. It doesn't matter where you're from, everybody shares that."

Catholic Charities remains committed to supporting refugees and immigrants through their Immigration Legal Services ministry available in Cedar Rapids, Dubuque, Hampton, Marshalltown, New Hampton, Postville and Waterloo.