WASHINGTON – America's Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) has been the subject of debate and even controversy in recent years.
The Trump administration lowered the number of refugees accepted per year to 15,000, down from an average of about 95,000 over concerns about the vetting process.
Now the Biden administration plans to raise the number to 125,000, a move being applauded by the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) which monitors refugees seeking safety from religious persecution abroad.
"The United States can't urge other countries to accept refugees and to deal, work with refugees coming into their countries and not be a model itself," Gayle Manchin, chairwoman of the USCIRF, tells CBN News.
On Wednesday, Manchin will lead a hearing on refugees looking at ways the U.S. government can better protect and support individuals fleeing religious persecution, including recommendations for improving the program, and how to create conditions that would allow refugees to return to their homes.
There are currently 1.4 million vulnerable refugees who urgently need to be resettled according to the UN Refugee Agency, which estimates nearly 80 million people worldwide were forcibly displaced in 2019.
The USCIRF hearing begins at 10:30 am EST on Wednesday, Feb. 10. Click here to watch.