Refugee Resettlement Programs Scam The Public
© Jim Simpson | The Daily Caller
Today’s Refugee Resettlement program is a study in government-sponsored fraud. The nine primary resettlement contractors, called “Voluntary Agencies” or VOLAGs, work with 350 subcontractors called “affiliates,” and are paid per head to resettle refugees. This includes $2,025 for each refugee from the State Department’s Reception and Placement program, and a Voluntary Agencies Matching Grant of up to $2,200 for employment-eligible refugees from the Health and Human Services Department’s Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).
To receive the matching grant the VOLAG must provide $1 for every $2 of grant money, i.e. $1,100 to receive the maximum $2,200. A minimum twenty percent of the VOLAG contribution ($440) must be cash. The rest can be donated furniture, clothes, food and other goods, or volunteer time at a specified hourly rate. By obtaining cash and in-kind donations from the public, the VOLAG pays little or nothing.
But it is worse than that. VOLAGs get volunteers to actually solicit cash and donated goods from the public for them. So not only does the VOLAG meet its matching grant requirement through donations from the public, it uses volunteers to do the fundraising!
Church World Service, one of the nine VOLAGs, recently conducted a “Match Team” volunteer recruitment drive. Participating volunteers are required to:
- Raise at least $1,100 per individual through in-kind and cash donation. (CWS could thus get the $2,200 grant based wholly on the volunteer’s effort).
- Raise a minimum cash amount equivalent to one month’s rent and utilities for the individual/family they are serving. (The $2,025 R&P grant is provided for this same purpose).
Volunteers are also asked to provide many of the services the VOLAG is supposed to perform, for example:
- Accompany adults to the DMV to get their state ID
- Go job hunting together
- Practice writing checks for rent and bills
- Go shopping for work uniform and shoes together
- Transport parents to a school parent-teacher meeting
- Practice speaking English together
- Practice filling out applications
- Search for childcare together
- Provide a tour of the community and show them free family activities (local parks and libraries)
Volunteers pay all their own expenses — like gas and food — with no reimbursement. The resettlement program is billed as a “public-private partnership” but the VOLAGs appear to have rigged it so that volunteers do the work while they laugh all the way to the bank.
A VOLAG resettling a family of four receives $8,100 ($2,025 x 4) plus however many $2,200 matching grants it can justify, to provide a few months’ rent, cash and other items. But with “Match Teams” raising cash and in-kind donations to cover these expenses, how much do the VOLAGs actually have to lay out?
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James Simpson is an author, economist, businessman and investigative journalist. His latest book is The Red Green Axis: Refugees, Immigration and the Agenda to Erase America. Follow Jim on Twitter & Facebook.