Earlier this week, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson defended his decision to continue resettling refugees despite criticism from several GOP lawmakers.
Instead, the Republican governor called on lawmakers to stop creating “fear” about the decision to allow vetted refugees to relocate to areas in northwest Arkansas as part of the Trump Administration’s refugee resettlement program.
“A refugee coming to America is not an illegal entry,” the Arkansas Governor clarified in his opening statement. “This was an executive branch decision that I was called upon to make.”
Hutchinson informed the legislative committee that fewer than 50 refugees will be resettled in Washington County if the White House decided to request it. Ultimately, it was the timing of the announcement — two days before Christmas — that concerned Trump supporters in the state.
“During the Christmas holidays, I literally received dozens if not hundreds of calls, texts, emails and Facebook messages,” said State Senator Trent Garner who joined Committee Chair State Senator Gary Stubblefield in reaching out to the governor on Monday, January 13, 2019.
“While I appreciate the governor coming and I think he answered some of the questions I think he added more questions than what we had,” Garner stated.
Arkansas is among 42 states that have indicated they will continue to accept refugees after the Trump administration issued an executive order that granted state and local governments the authority to reject refugees.
This local component is what prompted Garner to pull back his criticism of the governor and instead focus on city and county officials.
“If you have an opinion about the resettlement of refugees in your area, call your county officials and your mayors,” he stated. “Let your quorum court and city council members know.”
In a role reversal, Democratic-leaning figures praised the Governor’s comments while conservative supporters congratulated Garner and Stubblefield and their blunt questioning of Hutchinson.
“Each of you are leaders in your community,” the governor declared. “You’ve got a choice to make. You can create fear or you can help resolve fear.”
“We are glad the governor helped dispel some of the myths out there,” said Emily Crane Linn, a member of Canopy Northwest Arkansas, a non-profit that helps re-settle refugees upon arrival. “They come here with the American Dream alive and well and burning in their hearts.”
Other mass migration enthusiasts praised the governor at a news conference following his comments, disputing claims from mass migration skeptics that refugees strain state and federal resources.
“He feels very comfortable and confident in recognizing refugees to this state,” stated Reverend Clint Schnekloth, a pastor of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Fayetteville. “He also shows that they bring a large net benefit.”
The governor revealed that the Washington County judge and the mayors of Fayetteville and Springdale have accepted refugee resettlement programs.
This local approval process has seen federal litigation levied against it across the country. Mass migration advocates argue that the local component gives municipalities a “veto” over a federal program.
The governor said the Washington County judge and the mayors of Fayetteville and Springdale have agreed to accept refugees. That local approval process is the subject of federal lawsuits in other parts of the country. Advocates for refugees say the local resettlement gives local officials a “veto” over a federal program.
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Boy Scouts File for Bankruptcy as a Result of Declining Membership and Sexual Abuse Lawsuits
On Tuesday, February 18, 2020, The Boy Scouts of America filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in order to stay running as thousands of sexual abuse claims from former members pile up against the youth organization in the courts.
The organization initiated its bankruptcy proceedings in Delaware on Tuesday morning, per court documents. Consequently, all civil suits filed against the youth organization will be suspended, according to a CNN report.
The organization will likely still have to pay victims throughout the bankruptcy proceedings, but it will not have to go through the arduous jury trial process in certain states.
.“The BSA cares deeply about all victims of abuse and sincerely apologizes to anyone who was harmed during their time in Scouting. We are outraged that there have been times when individuals took advantage of our programs to harm innocent children,” Roger Mosby, the Boy Scouts’ president and chief executive officer, announced in a statement Tuesday.
“While we know nothing can undo the tragic abuse that victims suffered, we believe the Chapter 11 process — with the proposed Trust structure — will provide equitable compensation to all victims while maintaining the BSA’s important mission,” he continued.
Lawyers informed the Post that the Boy Scouts would have to make the bankruptcy go public in order to reach as many victims as possible.
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