Local Officials React to President’s Exec. Order


President Donald Trump’s executive order banning refugees from several different countries has the Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees dealing with the aftermath. Eyewitness News reporter Grace Fernandez brings us an update on how local leaders are responding. Executive director of the refugee center, Shelly Callahan shared her fears of this executive order on Monday but today she called a press conference giving local officials the chance to speak up as well.

“I implore that president trump and his administration to reconsider this action against the U.S. resettlement program.”

The Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees has been doing resettlement work for 36 plus years.

“These 16,000 people that we have resettled here to Utica, fleeing the very worst of circumstances, often having lost everything including their families have come here to begin again mustering hope, courage, resilience and the most fervent devotion to the belief and the fulfillment of the American dream I have ever witnessed.”

Elected officials took the podium one by one, comforting the community and showing support for refugees.

“I think anyone who is against refugees and immigrants coming to our community should watch those children who sang here this morning because they did a great job. I can’t dance around the issue I’m gonna say what this is, this is really a ban on Islam that’s what it is. It’s unfortunate that it’s come to this.”

Members of the audience showed support towards elected officials that said this nation was originally built upon immigrants and it’s why cities like Utica have flourished.

They need to fix this right away, and they need to stop it and allow the people that want to come here to continue to come here and to continue to build upon this great country.

Callahan went on to say that the president’s executive order directly hurts the center as they get paid per capita for refugee arrival.

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