The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Chris Allbritton at or +1 305 741 9886

In Second Annual Administration Report Card, Refugees International Says U.S. Performance Fails Yet Again

'As bad as last year’s performance was, this year’s is even worse'


The Trump administration received its second failing grade in two years in Refugees International's annual Report Card on the administration's performance on refugee and humanitarian protection, which was published today.

Refugees International evaluated the administration in seven critical areas both in the United States and overseas, all of which have traditionally enjoyed a history of bipartisan support. These include:

  • Asylum -- F
  • U.S. Refugee Admissions Program -- F
  • Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and Other Forms of Humanitarian Protection -- F
  • Humanitarian Funding -- F
  • Diplomacy to Save Lives -- D
  • Refugee Women and Girls -- D
  • Strengthening the Multilateral System of Refugee, Migration, and Humanitarian Response -- F

As indicated in the Report Card, the grades are based on criteria drawn from U.S. and international refugee law, as well as long-established best practices in humanitarianism endorsed by prior U.S. administrations of both parties and by the U.S. Congress.

"Day in and day out, the country and the world have witnessed a range of practices and policies from this White House that exhibit a full-spectrum of hostility towards some of the world's most vulnerable people," said Refugees International President Eric Schwartz. "Thus, Refugees International believes it is critical to account carefully for the totality of the administration's decisions and actions. This document shows a continuum of cruelty that should shock the conscience of all Americans and call them to question what is being done in their names, because as bad as last year's performance was, this year's is even worse."

The Trump administration continues to undermine U.S. refugee law and longstanding U.S. humanitarian policy through cruel practices toward families seeking asylum, weakening the U.S. asylum process, and crippling the U.S. Refugee Admissions program. Overseas, President Trump has sought to dramatically reduce and otherwise restrict lifesaving humanitarian aid (including aid to refugee women and girls), has failed to lead on efforts to end conflicts inflicting humanitarian suffering, and has undermined global efforts to improve responses on migration and refugees.

The one bright spot is that none of this is permanent. The report makes clear that nothing except decisions by President Trump and his White House are preventing the United States from changing course and improving refugee and humanitarian practices that would bring the country back into conformity with both international and U.S. law.

"There are now more than 70 million refugees and internally displaced people around the world and historically, the United States has played a critical role in helping to meet the needs of people who have been forced from their homes," said Schwartz. "Instead of stepping up to the enormous challenges, the United States is turning its back on its moral and legal responsibilities. But there's nothing that prevents a change in policies."

Refugees International is a Washington, D.C.-based organization that advocates to end refugee crises, advocates for lifesaving assistance and protection for displaced people, and promotes solutions to displacement crises.