Perhaps the most hands-on way to help a refugee is to host them in your home. This is a big decision to make as you would be allowing someone whom you barely know to live in your home. If this is a route that you decide to go, always go through a reputable organization that does all of the proper screenings including health and criminal history screenings.
Amid the growing world refugee crisis, an increasingly popular question is: what is the correlation between refugees and crime rates in cities and towns where many refugees have been resettled? If you are considering hosting a refugee in your home, this may be a question you have.
In 2017 the New American Economy Research Fund analyzed the link between refugees and crime rates in the United States. The group looked at the 10 U.S. cities that received the most refugees proportionate to their pre-existing population. In nine out of 10 cities the group found that crime rates actually went down, and in some cases, they went down significantly.
In Southfield, Michigan, for example, the violent crime rate decreased by 77.1 percent and in Decatur, Georgia it went down by 62.2 percent. Other places had less impressive drops like Clarkston, Georgia which only had a 4.8 percent decrease. W. Springfield, Massachusetts, was the only outlier in this study with a violent crime increase of 87.9 percent. According to the New American Economy Research Fund, however, this dramatic increase is likely due to a raging opioid crisis that was being investigated by the FBI before the refugees began to come into the area.
With that in mind here is more information on how you can go about hosting a refugee:
According to Fast Company, Refugees Welcome International works similarly to Air BnB. This means that you can host a refugee in your home while you are living in it. Refugees Welcome International also offers those who share their homes, funding. According to the organization’s website their help the home owner by providing rent money for the refugee staying with you. Refugees Welcome International currently operates in 16 countries, though the U.S. is not one of them. Americans can host a refugee in a similar way through Positive Action in Housing.
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