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Hundreds Of Afghan Refugees Fleeing Taliban Expected In Connecticut Next Week

People hold a poster demanding a safe passage out of Afghanistan, during a demonstration in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021.
Markus Schreiber
Associated Press

State officials said Connecticut is accepting 310 Afghan refugees who have fled the Taliban takeover of their country. The first are expected to arrive in the state next week.

Governor Ned Lamont said Connecticut has a long history of accepting refugees. He urged residents to help the state’s immigrant resettlement agencies welcome the Afghan families.

“I don’t know if it’s a fruit basket, I don’t know if it’s a book bag, maybe it’s just a friendly ear to say we welcome you to the state of Connecticut," Lamont said.

Susan Schnitzer, head of the Connecticut Institute for Refugees and Immigrants in Bridgeport, said their immediate need is financial donations and housing.

“They’ve been a number of lovely families who’ve offered to host a family in their home, but what we need given the myriad of circumstances, it is best if we could find apartments so the families can live independently,” Schnitzer said.

She said the 310 refugees coming to Connecticut have been thoroughly vetted and are now at military bases in the U.S.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.