As the world’s eyes are focused on Ukraine, with over 4 million refugees having fled in what the UN Refugee Agency is describing as the ‘fastest growing refugee crisis since World War II’, Upwardly Global is eager to share learnings with partners on the ground — employers, policymakers, and grassroots organizations — and all who work on refugee workforce inclusion. Employment is essential to the settlement and integration process, providing refugees with a sense of agency and strengthening ties to their new communities as well as providing needed support for host economies.
This work comes at a time when Upwardly Global is sharing policy recommendations and opportunities as part of our 2022 Policy Review. As the first and longest-serving organization focused on helping immigrant, refugee, and asylee professionals rebuild their careers in the United States, we engage in policy advocacy to amplify their voices and experiences in key policy conversations. Leveraging our experience serving these populations, we seek to advocate for systems change and to direct impact by engaging in critical non-partisan policy conversations that scale impact and remove barriers to commensurate employment.
These recommendations are aimed at building a vibrant American workforce where immigrants and refugees are welcomed, integrated, and fully able to contribute to the economy, their communities, and our shared future. The global landscape for refugees and asylees, in particular, is constantly changing, and we will ensure our policy recommendations take these shifts into consideration. This is especially relevant with the events currently unfolding in Ukraine and the recent granting of Temporary Protected Status to some Ukrainians by the federal government.
The recommendations and opportunities fall under 3 key pillars:
- Economic: Labor shortages from the COVID-19 pandemic have driven demand in key industries where immigrant and refugee professionals bring strengths.
- Diplomatic: The recent Afghan and Ukrainian refugee crises have broadened support for the integration of these populations across businesses, top-level government/military, and the general public.
- Social: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) commitments and awareness of the need for and value of diversity are impacting hiring at mid and high-level roles and major companies’ staffing strategies.
You can read the full recommendations and opportunities here.