Determining the Number of Refugees to Be Resettled in the United States: An Ethical and Policy Analysis of Policy-Level Stakeholder Views

Rachel Fabi, Daniel Serwer, Namrita S. Singh, Govind Persad, Paul Spiegel, Leonard Rubenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Through engagement with key informants and review of ethical theories applicable to refugee policy, this paper examines the ethical and policy considerations that policy-level stakeholders believe should factor into setting the refugee resettlement ceiling. We find that the ceiling traditionally has been influenced by policy goals, underlying values, and practical considerations. These factors map onto several ethical approaches to resettlement. There is significant alignment between U.S. policy interests and ethical obligations toward refugees. We argue that the refugee ceiling should be restored to historical norms, and that there exists a corresponding obligation to counter negative public perceptions about refugees and the costs of resettlement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)142-156
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Refugee
  • ceiling
  • humanitarianism
  • justice
  • resettlement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Demography
  • Geography, Planning and Development

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