America’s role in helping refugees

Jason Marks, an asylum training officer and union shop steward, talks about how the Trump administration’s policies have been hurting refugees and affected his work.
8:18 | 08/11/20

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Transcript for America’s role in helping refugees
Facing the largest migration disaster in history. With some seventy million refugees worldwide for the last eighty years the United States has taken in refugees not just due to a legal obligation but a moral one. Since president trump took office there's been a near shot down of the asylum process prompting one asylum officer and union shop Steward took a Washington Post opinion column titled. The US hired me to protect refugees. Now it tells me to abandon them joining us now is the author Jason marks an asylum training officer and union shop Steward. Jason thanks so much for your time. Glad to beer Lindsay you for having me today so you run in the Washington Post that America is abandon its promise to protect the most vulnerable. How self. So yeah so so basically we're refugee protection. It's American as apple and its student actions just Albert or identity since before our founding. The pilgrims sense most people know. Wing religious persecution. As a trinity United States. And really sing and spell the end of World War II. You spirit of the global effort to resettle refugees. And since 1980 in particular. When the refugee act was out of our legal framework for protecting people. It's out of who they are where they were ordered. I would it looks Beers Bob American presidencies have. We under American presidents we. I admitted more refugees and the rest of the world compliance. So we have international hadn't done it US legal obligations protects the world's most horrible folks refugees are parents. And we also have a moral responsibility does earlier its actions that hovered over identity aren't going barracks before the rest the world looks to us super about a refugee protection. Patents we have abandoned rules 2000 started beginning in 2000. And since January 2017. And as you are stating carrier trump administration has clamped down significantly on the immigration process. Starting initially with the travel plan banned from. Mainly Muslim countries and putting in place what it's called extreme vetting describe what that means in terms of refugees and others Seeking Asylum. The first via travel ban did it was it was implemented. What did a few days that the administration taking office. Immediately the refugees this program was grounded. My colleagues and our word literally grounded some sort overseas trips to. In her you wouldn't bet refugees around the world's. It it'd be implemented a our routes. A spokeswoman from separate different bird are only Muslim majority countries. And it essentially grounded the overseas program. And just what would that it. Shorts it started the process of implementing emergency. Sort out of her seat Britain's. Extreme measures edit it allowed for these chase boats from certain countries hold seemingly indefinitely. Added layers and layers of her usual but held up people who live in the process otherwise would have been that it didn't Reese adults. We're still seeing Tuesday thousands of people in that. Portable refugee department are still help out there have been interviewed and Bennett yours years ago prior you do have gotten. Oh. And then as we move forward. Is. She mentions our nineteen. We saw administration's interest furtherance or implement us here. At the border that it made it now merely possible. For people seek protection and protection of the United States. Would you say that those who are seeking that protection it's basically equal opportunity across the board or. Have people from black and brown communities being impacted at a larger rate. Say that maybe they impact people across the borders. Put just it. Did have sex date accept the impact bull a caller who world's. Just because that the folks that receiving on the the united states of more recent times. Are predominantly from Central America and northern triangle Guatemala Honduras Salvador. About a massive refugee crisis. Folks are. Indiana's thirteen and jeans yeah Egypt just unleash terror on those communities. Are the only option those many of those folks he is streets you the United States seek refuge. And then you know around the world particularly the Syrian and poor. Are you should shirt Pete. Barges mass migration crisis really in the history but world. Syrian war really was outside. And most of those folks. Obviously you're coming from Syria and are more from the Arab world so dubious to these policies and Fair Oaks color more so. Really they wouldn't hurt anybody now trying to completed its it and of course. Here's a representative of your union you and other members have taken action in spoken out what is compelled you to do so. Yes so a lot of my colleagues and I we you know we we have been goats. Do we all swear in of the constitution don't hold our law. And those of us stronger this worker enters certain groups here typical civil servants. A lot of folks are this work with a passion orders for refugee protection. And so what we're we're we saw the track opened in our colleagues at werder. Distraught police are that are R&R program march being undermined our -- mission be undermined. And you know our union who represents. These folks whose work was tremendous impact on their work. Or re we felt obligated we're all bearing witness what is happening we stop the needs. Or we. I imagine there's some urgency some kind of hair on fire in this moment is that act. Yeah. Yet yes Lindsay it really is a herald our home and it is really urgent Selig to get this message are you mentioned new and unique position to tell the story. You know a government employee and not speak didn't. Leave but in my leading to beat. I speak on behalf of my colleagues and we represented. You know they're for the last almost forty years just didn't blow up or blow to what we do. State and its whole and so. And since its days Jason just give me a sense so why should people who are at home feel alarmed at this moment. So people at home should feel because we're on the. Breaks. It's America no longer being in the America and the refugee protection business sexually. We 2007 seeing as I mentioned it started at the travel ban and Pittsburgh restaurants. A few different policies I don't like to mention that we're implemented over the last couple years it really forced or. Members are Robert Morrison gross. And put them into terrible Ritter basic source who. Do interviews that essentially. Results and all being either deported to Guatemala were either extremely vulnerable. Or being forced to wait in Mexico where they've been good on cartels gangs. And our members but once and doing these interviews. And a lot of and these situations. Ends. People are outrageous is all being done on behalf the American people in their name as part of the US and British service. It's these kids these policies continued darn sure yes. You know we're basically get as he the end of this mission that's been vital and didn't save billions of its. And has done so much good for the United States and for standing in the world. Jason marks with thank you so much for your time appreciate you coming on the show and thank you for inside. You so much for having me.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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