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Statehouse Democratic leaders ask Kentucky leaders to accept Afghan refugees

Fleeing Afghanistan refugees
Posted at 6:58 PM, Aug 22, 2021

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (LEX 18) — The Kentucky House Minority Floor Leader and Senate Minority Floor Leader are asking Governor Andy Beshear and the state's Congressional delegation to offer the state as a home for refugees of Afghanistan.

Rep. Joni Jenkins (D-Louisville) and Sen. Morgan McGarvey (D-Louisville) spoke in front of supporters outside of the Kentucky Refugee Ministries building on Sunday afternoon in Louisville.

Both Democratic leaders say that bipartisan groups of elected leaders in other states are seeking homes for Afghan refugees, and they hope that Kentucky joins them.

Semsudin Haseljic, the program leader at Kentucky Refugee Ministries, drew upon his own memories while saying that Kentucky is in a "strong position" to resettle Afghan refugees.

"With well-established resettlement agencies in Louisville, Lexington, Bowling Green, Owensboro – and soon to be in Covington – we are ready to respond to this humanitarian crisis. On a personal note, as I watch Afghan refugees arriving in Ramstein Air Base, it brings back memories of when Bosnian refugees, including myself, were evacuated 27 years ago to that same base," said Semsudin.

Jenkins and McGarvey said they will send the governor and the congressional delegation the formal letter calling to help refugees on Monday.

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Page 1 of letter from Kentucky General Assembly Democratic Leaders to Governor Beshear and Kentucky's Congressional delegation
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Page 2 of letter from Kentucky General Assembly Democratic Leaders to Governor Beshear and Kentucky's Congressional delegation