Refugees

A Senate committee is voting down a proposal that ends the refugee resettlement program in South Dakota from countries that appear on the federal travel ban list.
 
However, if passed, officials with the governor’s office say Senate Bill 200 would get overridden by federal law.
 
Currently, Lutheran Social Services of South Dakota assists with refugee resettlement in the state. According to its website, in 2017, LSS helped 316 refugees settled into South Dakota.
 

Kealey Bultena / SDPB

As educators incorporate best practices, utilize new projects in certain subjects, and incorporate innovative techniques into their lessons, one constant remains: you can’t teach students who don’t attend. Truancy is an evolving issue in South Dakota’s schools. State lawmakers are working to pass legislation to change state law regarding penalties for being out of school, and school leaders are using every tool they can find to convince kids to class.

Robin Shulman

Freelance journalist Robin Shulman of New York City comes to South Dakota State University for the Pulitzer Center of Crisis Reporting visit. Her lecture is called "In Canada, People Like You & Me Can Sponsor Syrian Refugees. Here's What Happens." Shulman talks about her work covering immigration, poverty, urban policy, and other issues in U.S. cities, the Middle East and other parts of the world.

The increase of Syrian and other Middle Eastern refugees fleeing war torn countries is raising debate in this nation over how many the US should allow in. But refugees are nothing new for the United States. According to information from the US Department of State, since 1975, more than three million refugees have arrived in all 50 states in America. Currently in South Dakota refugees arrive in Sioux Falls and Huron. Officials are looking into making Aberdeen a direct resettlement site.

FRONTLINE brings you "Children of Syria" tonight on South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

Filmmaker Marcel Mettelsiefen talks with Dakota Midday host Lori Walsh about telling the truth and making art amidst the rubble and hope of the human experience.

Aberdeen Possible Direct Refugee Resettlement Site

Apr 15, 2016

UPDATE: According to the Office of Refugee Resettlement, under the US Department of Health and Human Services, nearly 70,000 refugees entered the US in fiscal year 2014. They were settled in 47 states, plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. In 2014 South Dakota became home for 523 refugees from eleven different countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

Natasha Istomin

SDPB's Jenifer Jones spent part of December working with refugees on the Greek Island of Lesvos.  Jones is now back in South Dakota.  She shared stories of her volunteer work with Dakota Midday host Lori Walsh.

Guest host Cara Hetland welcomed the Dakota Political Junkies a day early this week.  Madison Daily Leader publisher Jon Hunter and Sioux Falls Argus Leader reporter/columnist Jonathan Ellis visited about the climate conference in France and whether anything will come out of it that pertains to South Dakotans, the latest refugee news in the state, a busy week for the Secretary of State's office as they peruse signatures for ballot initiatives, news that Black Hills State University will lead GEAR UP restructuring and more.

Refugees And Immigrants Bring Diversity To Huron

Nov 30, 2015

Huron has a population of about 13,000. But it contains the diversity you might expect in a larger city. Almost 40 percent of students in the school system were in an English Language Acquisition program at some point.  Many are Karen refugees from Burma and Thailand.

 

Huron Mayor Paul Aylward says the city went through some tough times. Packing plants shut down, the town lost its university, and the population was declining. Eventually a turkey processing plant opened. To fill the jobs, leaders started recruiting Karen refugees who were living in the Twin Cities.