- The U.S. evacuated more than 123,000 people from Afghanistan, including tens of thousands of Afghan allies, parolees, and their families. Many of these individuals have served in various capacities with the U.S. mission in Afghanistan or with other U.S. based NGOs.
- These individuals have been thoroughly vetted multiple times: (1) when first being employed by the U.S. government or U.S. based NGOs, (2) when applying for Special Immigrant Visas (SIV) if applicable, (3) when evacuated from Afghanistan and processed at U.S. military bases around the world, and (4) when arriving in the U.S.
- Many people evacuated from Afghanistan were granted humanitarian parole upon their arrival in the U.S., which allows certain individuals to enter the U.S. without a visa for “urgent humanitarian reasons”. These people include those who were in the process of applying for SIV or refugee status but were not able to complete their applications prior to the evacuation.
- However, parole does not provide a pathway to permanent residency nor automatic work authorization and is only a temporary solution. It does not grant any public benefits to evacuees, such as Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), Medicaid, and Temporary Assistance fort Needy Families (TANF) that refugees receive.
- Many Americans, including many Afghanistan veterans, have volunteered time, money, and resources to prepare for the arrival of Afghan evacuees and ensure that their transition into American society is as seamless and painless as possible. However, many challenges remain.
- An Afghan Adjustment Act from Congress will help overcome these challenges. To integrate into our communities quickly and effectively, parolees need to be able to adjust their status quickly and avoid asylum backlogs that can stretch for years. If Congress fails to act, it will place tremendous additional strain on already-overwhelmed asylum and immigration court systems.
Advocate for an Afghan Adjustment Act
Contacting your member of Congress and/or their staff is one of the easiest and most effective ways of making your voice heard on the need to pass an Afghan Adjustment Act. Below is instruction on either writing or speaking to your member of Congress and/or their staff regarding an Afghan Adjustment Act.
Congress must act to resolve the long-term status of Afghan evacuees who are currently being resettled into our communities. Without an adjustment act, these allies could be placed in removal proceedings, and eventually even face deportation back to the horrors of a Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. Take action and call on your members of Congress to pass an Afghan Adjustment Act.
Congress Should Pass an Afghan Adjustment Act describes the shortcomings of humanitarian parole for Afghan evacuees and why an Afghan Adjustment Act is necessary to successfully and fully welcome these people to the U.S.
Explainer: What Can We Learn from Prior Adjustment Acts and What They Mean for Afghan Resettlement provides information on the history of prior adjustment acts, why they were needed, how they were executed, and how they can influence a future Afghan Adjustment Act.
Explainer: Humanitarian Parole and the Afghan Evacuation provides information on the historical uses of humanitarian parole in the U.S., how one becomes eligible to receive it, and the benefits that parolees can and cannot receive.