FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 22, 2023
Contact: Melissa Stek, email@example.com
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the distribution of $77 million in funding to support border and interior communities that are welcoming migrants and asylum-seekers through the Shelter and Services Program (SSP).
So far this year, 40 border and interior states, counties, and cities and nearly 70 organizations have received SSP funding to welcome and meet the basic needs of migrants arriving to the U.S. southern border and being transported to interior cities. The $77 million will support 53 communities along the border and within the interior United States in providing food, shelter, and other basic services to migrants—many of whom fled to the U.S. in search of safety and in need of asylum protections.
The National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA) and Cities & Counties For Citizenship (CC4C) welcome the distribution of federal resources for state and local infrastructures to welcome new arrivals, but encourage greater coordination, transparency, and accessibility to the funds.
Said Nicole Melaku, Executive Director, National Partnership for New Americans: “NPNA is encouraged by the support for local governments and community-based organizations that provide humanitarian support for newcomers. At the same time, we have noted our concerns to the administration with how SSP funding has been distributed so far, and look forward to working with the federal government to ensure that future funding comes with improved coordination, transparency, and accessibility. We know that our nation is at its best when the government supports inclusion efforts, which sets an example of hospitality and welcome in the midst of the world’s highest global migration rates in history.”
NPNA, with coalition members and close partners, has advocated for increased Congressional funding for SSP to increase the capacity of community-based organizations, including several NPNA members, and cities and counties as they welcome asylum seekers and others with housing and other urgent needs. While this advocacy has been successful, NPNA has also advocated for administrative changes to increase all nonprofits’ ability to access this funding. Last month, NPNA joined 72 organizations in a letter to Biden administration officials calling for increased coordination, transparency, and accessibility in how it distributes SSP funding. While continuing to call for these improvements, NPNA advocates for additional SSP funding as part of a larger, more permanent welcoming infrastructure for immigrants and refugees.
The National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA) is a multi-ethnic, multiracial coalition of 66 of the nation’s largest immigrant and refugee rights organizations with reach across over 40 states. Together with our members, we advance immigrant and refugee equity and inclusion, build and expand immigration legal services and integration programming capacity, and drive campaigns that strengthen democracy through increased civic participation. See our website for more information at partnershipfornewamericans.org
Cities & Counties for Citizenship (CC4C) is a national network of over 110 cities and counties working together to advance naturalization and immigrant and refugee inclusion programs at the local level. The network aims at increasing citizenship among eligible U.S. permanent residents and encouraging cities and counties across the country to invest in immigrant and refugee inclusion programs. CC4C is chaired by the Mayors of New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles and Seattle, with support from the National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA).