Then and Now…
78 years ago today, the calls to help 937 Jewish refugees (mostly from Germany) fell on deaf ears as the transatlantic liner St. Louis was denied entry in Havana and sailed past Miami. The request to President Franklin D. Roosevelt for haven went unanswered. The American Jewish community worked tirelessly to find European shores of safety for the refugees as they were sent on their return path, but tragically 254 of the passengers would face their deaths in concentration camps.
Today, as we confront the greatest refugee crisis in human history, our administration is again working to close doors rather than open them — with two Executive Orders attempting to halt refugee admissions, the Congress launching legislative attacks against refugees, and governors, state and local legislators across the country taking measures to limit refugee resettlement in their states.
Like the St. Louis, today’s turning away of refugees will have tragic human consequences. Vigils are happening in memory of the St. Louis in 22 cities today. How can you make a difference sitting right where you are? Call or email the White House and ask President Trump to settle at least 75,000 refugees next year.