6 Things to Know about Refugees in Delaware

Spread facts, not fear.

Jewish Family Services of Delaware is responsible for resettling refugees in our state and helping them integrate and build new lives in our communities.  You can help by educating yourself about the lives of refugees in the United States and in Delaware.


1. Refugees are legal immigrants.  They are the most vetted group of people allowed into the United States.
They go through fingerprinting, interviews with 5 government bureaus, health screenings, and multiple security checks – a thorough vetting process that takes an average of 2 years. If there is any doubt about who a refugee is, he or she will not be admitted to the United States.  Refugees are legal immigrants who want what each of us wants – to live and raise their families in safety.

2. More than half of the world’s refugees are children.
The United States predominantly admits refugee families, including many reunification cases – in which part of a family already legally resides in America and seeks to be joined by the rest of their family.

3. Welcoming refugees makes America safer and stronger.
Resettlement helps to stabilize some of our key strategic allies in countries and regions that are disproportionately affected by forced displacement. By increasing regional stability, resettling refugees helps the United States and our allies fight against the forces that wish to cause us harm.  Finally, continuing to welcome refugees sends a strong message to groups sowing havoc and fear that the United States remains a leading force for stability and liberty in the world.

4. Once settled, refugees are eager to give back to the country and state that they now call home.
Most refugees quickly find jobs and become self-sufficient after settlement in America. They support their families, pay taxes, start businesses, and are employed in a wide range of sectors.  They spend money that helps local economies and send their children to school with the intent that they become productive members of their new communities.

5. Last week, JFS had 6 refugee families, totaling 19 people, in our pipeline.
We are grateful that one family was safely settled on January 24th.  The fates of the remaining five families, who have been thoroughly screened and approved for legal resettlement to the United States, are now uncertain. These families are from Syria, Iraq, and Pakistan – they include children as young as 6 months, and families who have been separated from loved ones who are currently legal residents of Delaware. They are engineers, medical and religious professionals, a hairdresser, a welder, a librarian, and a translator.

6. Refugees in Delaware are proud to call the First State home.
Many of JFS’ refugee clients who are living and settled in Delaware report feelings of anxiety and confusion in this political climate.  But living in Delaware allows them to remain hopeful and confident.  They are grateful for the compassion, solidarity, and welcoming spirit that Delawareans have shown towards them.