In September 2015 when President Obama made the controversial decision to call for 10,000 Syrian refugees to be resettled in the United States in 2016, Mayor de Blasio was quick to jump into the fray. Shortly after the announcement, de Blasio was one of 18 mayors to sign a petition encouraging Obama to accept even more refugees.
When anti-refugee rhetoric exploded in wake of the Paris attacks, de Blasio reiterated his commitment to keeping New York City open to Syrians while attackingconservatives like Donald Trump for Islamophobic statements.
Despite de Blasio's outspoken stance, New York City has not had the chance to welcome many Syrian refugees yet. Political gridlock and unparalleled levels of security screenings for applicants means Syrians have been slow to arrive in the country at all. Many wait over two years for approval. Even so, the prospect of more refugees arriving has advocates urging local and state officials to take a hard look at existing infrastructure for refugees. (read more)