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Refugee Resettlement Efforts Underway As Afghans Arrive in Connecticut

Young Afghan students sit outside with their book bags in front of them.

The U.S. military mission in Afghanistan ended Aug 31 with 123,000 evacuations, including 6,000 American citizens and tens of thousands of at-risk Afghans. But not everyone got out.

Refugee settlement organizations in Connecticut expect to receive more than 700 Afghan refugees this year. The University of Bridgeport and Goodwin University announced plans to open up dorms to the newly arrived immigrants, and also offer English lessons.

A Congressional aide to U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Connecticut) told WWL that the senator’s office “has worked on over 100 cases for Connecticut residents who have reached out to the office regarding family members who remain in Afghanistan. These cases often involve multiple family members, some of whom served as interpreters for the U.S. government.”

According to Patrick Malone, spokesman for Congressman Jim Himes (D-Connecticut): “We’ve flagged 702 individuals’ situations for the Department of State. This includes American citizens, Legal Permanent Residents, SIVs, P1s, P2s, and otherwise at-risk Afghans -- 270 of those 702 individuals have some Connecticut connection.”

Today on Where We Live, we look into the ongoing efforts to extricate and resettle Afghan refugees in Connecticut, and hear from Afghan-Americans whose families are in danger half a world away.

GUESTS: 

Sujata reports for the WNPR News business desk. Her features range from small business, entrepreneurship, innovation and microfinance to local impact of quantitative easing and changing trendsin global markets. She’s reported from abroad for WNPR and helped develop a segment on jobs and economic recovery, part of the business coverage.
Lucy is the Executive Producer and Host of WNPR's popular talk show, Where We Live. She’s been a public radio journalist for more than 20 years covering everything from education to immigration, juvenile justice and child welfare issues to veterans' affairs and the military.