UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, just released new data on the amount of people forcibly displaced worldwide: a record 68.5 million people have been forced to flee their homes because of violence, conflict, and persecution. That is greater than the populations of California and Texas combined.
No one wants to be a refugee, nor should it be how we define people. These are moms and dads, daughters and sons; they are teachers, nurses, engineers, entrepreneurs, and students. They want a life of dignity and security, just like the rest of us.
Supporting refugees is a matter of human decency; it’s also smart policy. Despite the misconceptions, refugees contribute to their communities. In fact, research has found that refugees benefit economies.
Now is the time to join the United Nations and stand #withrefugees. As UN Secretary-General António Guterres, said, “Their story is one of resilience, perseverance, and courage. Ours must be of solidarity, compassion, and action.”