Biden Announces Executive Order Dramatically Increasing Refugees Amid Pandemic

Posted: Feb 04, 2021 4:50 PM
Biden Announces Executive Order Dramatically Increasing Refugees Amid Pandemic

Source: AP Photo/Evan Vucci

President Biden has announced yet another executive order, one that will dramatically increase the number of refugees admitted to the U.S. President Trump had significantly decreased the level of refugee admissions during his four-year administration.  

Biden said there is a "need" that falls on the United States to take in refugees from around the world. 

"So today, I'm approving an executive order to begin the hard work of restoring our refugee admissions program to help meet the unprecedented global need," Biden said at the State Department on Thursday. 

Biden said the refugee program has been "badly damaged" and will take time to rebuild. 

"This executive order will position us to be able to raise the refugee admissions back up to 125,000 persons for the first full fiscal year of the Biden-Harris administration," said Biden. 

President Trump capped the number of refugees at 15,000 for the current fiscal year. Biden's goal of admitting 125,000 refugees would represent more than an 800 percent increase in admissions. During the Trump administration, local jurisdictions were also empowered with a say in whether or not they would like to welcome refugees into their communities. 

After just a short time in office, President Biden has signed a series of executive orders reversing much of the Trump administration's immigration policies. 

Biden has overturned the travel ban, halted construction of the border wall, paused deportations during his administration's first 100 days, and suspended the Trump administration's "Remain in Mexico" policy for migrants who claim asylum.