Press Releases

Rep. Curbelo Introduces the Cuban Immigrant Work Opportunity Act

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Washington, December 15, 2015 | comments

Washington, D.C.—Today, Rep. Curbelo introduced H.R. 4247, the Cuban Immigrant Work Opportunity Act.

A provision in the Refugee Education Assistance Act of 1980 treats ALL Cuban immigrants, regardless of their reasons for leaving the island, as refugees and asylees by granting them access to the federal Refugee Resettlement Program.  Unfortunately, recent reports indicate that this program has been grossly abused, allowing non-refugees to participate in the program and collecting benefits while living in Cuba. 

The Cuban Immigrant Work Opportunity Act would ensure only refugees and asylees can take advantage of the Refugee Resettlement Program.  Furthermore, it holds the Administration accountable to enforce its own regulations to ensure benefits are not being collected from ineligible individuals living abroad.

“Our Cuba immigration policy is flawed, and the Administration has made matters worse by recognizing the Cuban dictatorship as a legitimate government. Tens of thousands of Cubans have responded by risking their lives to flee the island. This proposal aims to reduce the abuse of America's generosity and affords Cubans the opportunity to work and contribute to our country,” Curbelo said.

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