50 war-affected refugees settling in NJ in January

Catholic Charities in Newark will help resettle more than 50 refugees from war-torn countries.

Catholic Charities in Newark will help resettle more than 50 refugees from war-torn countries. (12/9/16)

NEWARK - At least 50 additional war-affected refugees will settle in New Jersey this upcoming January and they will be supported by the Archdiocese of Newark.

The refugees are fleeing from war-torn countries including Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. They will settle in Essex and Hudson counties.

Maria Biancheri is the senior grants specialist for Catholic charities. She says that it takes months to get the refugees clearance to come to the United States.

“We are expecting to receive our first families in late January, which is close to the inauguration,” she says. “There may be some changes but we’re prepared for that.”

Volunteers will help the refugees settle into their new homes when they arrive. The volunteers will also help them get jobs and start learning English.

President-elect Donald Trump has said that he opposes President Obama’s plan to bring thousands of more refugees into the country. He has said in the past that he supported a ban on Muslim refugees coming here.

Biancheri says that bringing the refugees into New Jersey this January is not a political move.

“These people, they're not terrorists. They are fleeing from terrorists and I think a lot of people here understand that and are welcoming them with open arms,” she says.

Once the refugees are on their feet, Catholic Charities provides them with services for three months. After that time, the families are expected to reimburse the organization for the costs of their plane tickets.

More than 2,800 refugees have settled in the United States as of June in the past eight months.

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