October 2021 Immediate Needs
In response to the ongoing human rights crisis in Afghanistan that was further exacerbated by the takeover of the country by the Taliban in mid-August 2021, Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) launched a Crisis Response Campaign to press President Biden to welcome at-risk Afghans into the United States; halt any and all deportations of our Afghans neighbors; and support them through refugee resettlement and humanitarian response.
In partnership with Welcome.US Amnesty International is helping build a movement of welcome for people seeking safety. We all want to live in a world where we look after each other, and everyone is treated with dignity, respect, and fairness.
Making your voices heard:
1) Fill out this email tool online asking the Biden Administration to protect and welcome Afghans who are at risk in their country. This email tool will automatically send your message to President Biden, Homeland Security’s Mayorkas, Secretary of State Blinken and your US Senators and Representatives. (Time commitment: 4 minutes or less).
2) Use this tool to tweet President Biden, or craft your own language @POTUS
3) Call the White House comment line at 202-456-1111…
and say you demand President Biden evacuate Afghan civil society workers, journalists, activists, rights defenders, including women’s rights defenders and activists, Special Interest Visa candidates, and other vulnerable individuals who request evacuation to the United States or to a safe third country pending the adjudication of their applications. He should use every diplomatic avenue available to press Afghanistan’s neighbors to open their borders to refugees.
4) Call your two Senators and your Representative (call the Congressional Switchboard at 202-224-3121)
and tell them you want them to demand President Biden….(use the demands listed above).
5) Write a letter to the editor (tips for writing it here) of your local paper responding to an article published this week on Afghanistan
and repeat some of the points above, pointing out that this is a human rights issue. You may want to encourage people to support resettlement agencies in your area if you feel comfortable with that.
Help support your local Refugee Resettlement agencies who will be overwhelmed right now. Even before this current situation unfolded, California has been the largest resettlement area for Afghan refugees. For instance, in the past few weeks, Sacramento has received over 400 Afghan refugees to resettle!
Reach out to see how you can help: donation drives for money or household items, helping greet newcomers, other. (temporary housing is the most pressing need right now in Northern CA, so if you know someone with extra space or an Airbnb who can provide temporary housing….) A welcoming face or deed is so important to those who have experienced trauma.
1)This fund will directly help Afghan refugees who arrive: Soft Landing Fund
2) About the SIV (Special Immigrant Visa) program for Afghan Allies
3) Contact your local Refugee Resettlement agencies to see what they need. IRC is the largest resettlement agency in our state, but there may also be others in your area.