For Immediate Release
August 20, 2021
California Legislative Progressive Caucus Chair Ash Kalra and Vice Chairs Release Statement Urging President Biden to Accept Refugees from Afghanistan
SACRAMENTO – Chair of the California Legislative Progressive Caucus, Assemblymember Ash Kalra (D-San Jose), and Vice Chairs Assemblymember Carrillo (D-Los Angeles) and Assemblymember Santiago (D-Los Angeles), released the following statement in response to news that the Taliban has taken control of Afghanistan:
“With the horrific news of Taliban advancement this week, the California Legislative Progressive Caucus urges President Biden to demonstrate that the United States takes accountability for the rapidly deteriorating situation in Afghanistan by accepting refugees. Almost 40 years ago, our country was able to take in 200,000 refugees in just one year, yet in recent years we have not come close to this figure despite wars and turmoil displacing many. We can’t allow the previous administration’s anti-refugee practices to limit our assistance at this critical time.
“Once again we see US foreign policy result in loss of life, hope, and empathy. At this point it is our absolute responsibility to not only accept refugees, but also to simplify the process to allow people to find safety and stability here quickly. People’s lives are counting on it, generations of women are counting on it, and we must not shirk our moral obligation to help.
“We thank Governor Newsom for immediately offering our golden state as a home to those seeking refuge and we, as members of the legislature, want to help. It is a moral imperative to accept and welcome those seeking refuge at our shores and our borders. All people deserve respect, dignity, and compassion. As leaders of the Progressive Caucus, we strongly value inclusion and promoting human rights for all and urge the Biden Administration to create a pathway for residency, citizenship, and promote humanitarian efforts that put people first.”