VT Digger | November 14, 2016

Providers prep for refugees amid post-election uncertainties

A network of service providers is moving ahead with preparations for the arrival of Syrian and Iraqi refugees in Rutland amidst uncertainty about what a Trump presidency will mean for resettlement efforts.

The Rutland Refugee and Immigrant Service Providers Network will hold its first meeting Nov. 30 at the Rutland Free Library. The network is based on a model used in Chittenden County, which has had its own provider network for at least 15 years, according to state refugee coordinator Denise Lamoureux.

Lamoureux said the Chittenden County group meets about every six weeks. Members go over the nuts and bolts of resettlement, such as who’s arriving and when, and address specific questions members have. For example, Vermont Legal Aid will be attending the next Chittenden County meeting to discuss questions regarding refugees and taxes.