Over the past few decades, thousands of refugees were allowed to enter the United States. Although some of them work hard and embrace our country’s values, many choose to live off of government programs and refuse to assimilate. One of the ways to stop this from happening involves implementing legislation that encourages them to become part of their new communities.
For example, in Arizona, migrants can’t receive money from the state unless they meet certain requirements designed to help them with this. Since many aren’t actually interested in assimilating, thousands are fleeing the state.
According to reports, since 1981, Arizona has accepted over 7,000 refugees. Upon arrival, the United States Department of Health and Human Services give them a $925 stipend to start off. Once that runs out, they’re expected to start taking care of themselves.
However, since most are unable to support themselves right away, they typically reach out to the state government for assistance. But in Arizona, migrants receiving government aid must fill out a monthly report proving that they are taking English classes and looking for work in order to get additional money from the state. Because of this, many have actually opted to just move to other states instead.
One of the migrants leaving the state is Bilad Yusuf, a Somali mother of six. She was only allowed to migrate to the U.S. with her family a couple of months ago. Before that, she spent the past six years living in a refugee camp.
Upon arrival, her limited English and lack of experience made it difficult to find work. “We didn’t know how to get jobs here, and even if we did, we didn’t know how we’d get to them,” she explained to journalists through a translator.
To help them out, the Somali Association of Arizona (SAA) decided to help them with groceries and set up long-overdue doctor’s appointments. Although this is a perfect example of charities taking care of people instead of the government, Mukhtar Sheikh, the association’s program coordinator, believes the taxpayers should be the one taking care of the migrants instead of SAA. This is because Sheikh thinks that giving migrants handouts will ultimately benefit the state.
Specifically, he told reporters, “Arizona is able to do more for refugees, to be honest. If Arizona invested in these families, it would actually benefit the state, because they’re really hardworking.”
If they’re truly really hardworking, then they shouldn’t have any problem taking English classes and looking for work, which is the two main things that are required to get money from the state. But given the sheer volume of migrants moving elsewhere, it’s clear that most of them would rather not put in the effort.
One of the things Sheikh thinks the state should do is help more with employment. “There’s not a lot of programs to help [migrants] with employment here,” he pointed out. As a result, those who don’t have a job are forced to move somewhere else to survive. “If [their federal stipend] runs out and they don’t have a job, then there starts to be pressure for them to find a way to survive,” he explained, referring to those who choose to move.
However, it may not necessarily be a bad thing if migrants choose to leave traditionally conservative states that are unwilling to give them free money without strings attached. This is because it shifts the burden over to the Democratic states. They’re the ones constantly clamoring about giving people handouts. Accepting an influx of migrants will force them to put their policies to the test. Hopefully, the strain gets people to realize that the government shouldn’t be in the business of giving people money. Only charities should have that job.
If other Republican states want to address their refugee problem, they should consider adopting Arizona’s requirements for public assistance. Doing so is a win-win. Either the migrants take English classes and assimilate, or they move to a more liberal state.