Fewer Refugees in N.H. Could Add to State's Labor Shortage

Sep 30, 2017

Credit FILE

New Hampshire would likely see fewer refugee resettled here if President Trump’s proposed refugee cap goes into effect.

Trump’s new plan would cut more than half the number of refugees allowed into the U.S. – from 110,000 last year to 45,000.

New Hampshire sees about 200 new refugees a year. That number would likely drop under Trump's plan.

Jeff Thielman is head of the International Institute of New England, which helps resettle refugees in New Hampshire. He says few refugees arriving in the Granite State would further strain the state’s labor shortage.

“We get phone calls in our New Hampshire office like daily – hourly sometimes about people trying to hire our refugee clients for one thing or another," Theilman said. "Employers are pretty desperate for people to work in the construction industry, the services industry, transportation.”

Thielman said fewer refugees will also mean less federal funding for his agency, which could lead to staff cuts.