The Case for Hir­ing Refugees

Inc. (USA) - - STATE OF HIRING 2018 - —L.B.

WHY HIRE THEM

Refugees are legally el­i­gi­ble to work from the mo­ment they set foot in the United States. “You have a pop­u­la­tion that has gone through hell and is ea­ger to re­build their lives,” says Gideon Maltz, ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor of Ulukaya’s Tent Foun­da­tion. “That pro­duces a set of em­ploy­ees who are highly re­silient, highly mo­ti­vated, and highly loyal.”

WHERE TO FIND THEM

The State De­part­ment con­tracts with nine agen­cies—in­clud­ing the U.S. Com­mit­tee for Refugees and Im­mi­grants, the U.S. Con­fer­ence of Catholic Bish­ops, the In­ter­na­tional Res­cue Com­mit­tee, and World Re­lief—to re­set­tle refugees. Con­tact a lo­cal of­fice.

WHAT ROLES THEY FILL

Most gov­ern­ment fi­nan­cial sup­port runs out in 90 to 120 days, so the first goal of the re­set­tle­ment pro­gram is self-suf­fi­ciency. Even peo­ple with ad­vanced de­grees typ­i­cally work bluecol­lar or ser­vice jobs un­til they get the nec­es­sary cer­ti­fi­ca­tions or train­ing to re­sume their ca­reers. “You have highly tal­ented peo­ple, and once they de­velop flu­ency or gain more ex­pe­ri­ence, they make great can­di­dates for pro­fes­sional ad­vance­ment,” says Maltz.

COM­PA­NIES DO­ING IT RIGHT

In Novem­ber, WeWork com­mit­ted to hir­ing 1,500 refugees glob­ally. Most have started out in en­try-level main­te­nance and hos­pi­tal­ity roles, but the com­pany is ac­tively re­cruit­ing for open po­si­tions in IT, fi­nance, ar­chi­tec­ture, and mar­ket­ing. Re­cently, it kicked off a pi­lot to train refugees in cod­ing. Says WeWork’s direc­tor of part­ner­ships and spe­cial projects, Mo Al-Shawaf: “We are look­ing at em­pow­er­ing our 30,000 mem­ber com­pa­nies [clients] around the world to be part of this with us.”

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