Save the Children grades
the U.S. government on its recent policies toward refugee children around the
Erin Taylor 267.250.8829 (M)
WASHINGTON, DC (September 6, 2017) – The U.S. government has been a long-time leader
in caring for refugee children and their families, but its leadership has been
uneven over the last three years, with particular concern over the last eight
months, according to a new report card issued by the international humanitarian
organization Save the Children.
commitments and action taken since 2015 on four
issues central to the health and wellbeing of refugee children, the Refugee Children’s Progress
the government in the areas of education, child protection, food security and
- Education: A-
- Food Security: B
- Child Protection: B-
- Safe homes through
Despite strong U.S.
leadership on preventing harm to children, for example around early marriage
and forced recruitment into militaries, the organization states more could be
done to tailor approaches and better report on refugee children. Low marks for
safe homes are a result of the current administration’s suspension of the
refugee resettlement program.
The report is being
released ahead of the UN General Assembly in New York later this month and to
mark one year since the Leaders’ Summit on Refugees and the endorsement of the New York Declaration for Refugees and
Migrants by the U.S. and 192 other countries during last year’s UNGA.
Nearly half of the world’s
17.2 million refugees are under 18 years old. And refugees of all ages now
spend an average of 20 years living in exile. This means millions of refugee
children will spend their entire childhood, teen and young adult years living
in refugee camps or other displacement settings.
“U.S. leadership on
stemming and solving the global refugee crisis is desperately needed,” said
Michael Klosson, Vice President for Policy at Save the Children said at a
briefing on Capitol Hill. “A U.S. retreat from responsibility sharing could
prompt other governments to do the same and the result would be catastrophic.
“U.S. foreign assistance
commitments to help meet essential refugee education, food and protection needs
will mean the possibility of brighter futures for millions of children,”
Klosson added. “Continued U.S. resettlement opportunities for the most
vulnerable will allow hundreds of thousands of young refugees to go to bed at
night feeling safe and secure.”
Save the Children is urging
the U.S. to uphold existing resettlement commitments and use upcoming
international negotiation opportunities to push for a universal “30 day pledge”
on refugee education, so refugee children can return to learning within 30 days
of crossing an international border.
the full report here.
People wishing to tell their members of
Congress that they want to protect funding for international refugee education are
encouraged to sign the Save the Children
Action Network’s online petition here.
Save the Children gives children in the United States and around the world a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We invest in childhood — every day, in times of crisis and for our future. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.