PANA World Refugee Day Statement
In honor of World Refugee Day, Ramla Sahid, executive director of the Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans (PANA), asked San Diego leaders to think globally and act locally.
"This World Refugee Day we have an unprecedented global crisis, with more than 65.3 million individuals forcibly displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, generalized violence, or human rights violations," said Sahid.
PANA, a local organization dedicated to advancing the full economic, civic, and social inclusion of refugees in San Diego County, is calling on our local leaders to help make San Diego a welcoming region for refugees entering the U.S. Since the 1970’s, more than 80,000 individuals escaping violence and persecution in their countries have arrived in our County. The world attention on the refugee crisis creates an opportunity for San Diego to rethink the resettlement process for existing refugees and new arrivals.
Sahid stressed, “In addition to improving opportunities for refugees to contribute to the cultural and economic fabric of our communities, San Diego’s leaders must denounce the continued, hateful rhetoric that has animated this election year. Whether people come from the Middle East, Africa, East Asia, Latin America, or anywhere else in the world, San Diego should send the message that we protect and guarantee fundamental rights whether an individual was born in the U.S. or not. "
Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans (PANA) is a research, community organizing, and public policy hub dedicated to advancing the full economic and social inclusion of refugees. PANA lifts up refugee voices and builds leadership in communities to increase civic engagement and create an inclusive civil society. PANA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity based in San Diego County.