Voice For Refuge Endorses Refugee Candidates in Their Primaries on World Refugee Day

June 20, 2022
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For Immediate Release
Contact: Mary Elizabeth Margolis, memargolis@voiceforrefuge.org

New York City— Today, Voice for Refuge Action Fund released its endorsements for the remaining upcoming primaries. The endorsements include four candidates running at the Congressional level, all of whom are former refugees and pro-refugee candidates. These include Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), Dr. Omar Bah (D-RI), and Chol-Awan Majok (D-NY).

This is Voice for Refuge’s first round of endorsements in the 2022 elections, and the second time the 501c(4) organization has endorsed candidates for election. The organization specifically aims to endorse candidates based upon their stance on refugee issues.

“Congress plays a critical role in supporting and welcoming refugees through its work to fund the refugee resettlement program, take action on immigration reform and deliver critical aid to vulnerable families seeking safety. Because of this role and the responsibility that comes with it, it is vital that former refugees hold office to represent the concerns of American refugee communities in largest branch of government,” said Mary Elizabeth Margolis, Voice for Refuge’s Acting Managing Director. “We have witnessed work that Congresswoman Ilhan Omar and Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal have done to advocate and fight for those seeking safety, and for this reason will continue to support their candidacy. And we look forward to working with Dr. Omar Bah and Chol Majok to ensure that more individuals with refugee stories are represented and heard in the halls of Congress.” 

About these endorsed candidates

 Dr. Omar Bah: Omar is a progressive Democrat running for Congress in Rhode Island’s second district to defend the American Dream. As a refugee, human rights advocate, and founder of the Refugee Dream Center, Omar understands the struggles, dreams, and potential of Rhode Island’s hardworking families. He will work to bring more jobs and universal pre-k education to Rhode Island, defend a woman’s right to choose, help the US pivot toward a green economy and lower the cost of healthcare. To learn more about Bah’s campaign, visit www.bahforcongress.com.

Chol-Awan Majok: Majok is running for the democratic nomination in New York’s 22nd district, in order to bring constituents’ voices into the political arena. As a ‘Lost Boy’ of South Sudan, Majok came to the United States as a refugee in 2001. The son of a dedicated South Sudanese liberation fighter, Majok was inspired by his father to become dedicated to the service of his community and country. As a representative, Majok aims to prioritize affordable housing, accessible and adequate healthcare, and better quality education. To learn more about Majok’s campaign, visit www.cholforcongress.com 

Ilhan Omar: Omar is running for re-election to Minnesota’s fifth district. A Somalian refugee herself, Omar’s work is dedicated to ensuring that everyone has an equal shot at achieving the American dream. Omar has achieved substantial progress during her tenure, including in protecting the Liberian-American community from deportation. If re-elected, aims to further this progress in order to provide not just for ourselves but for our future fellow Americans. To learn more about Omar’s campaign, visit www.ilhanomar.com 

Pramila Jayapal: Running for re-election in Washington’s seventh congressional district, Jayapal has been fighting for progressive values in Congress since 2017. The first South Asian American woman in the House of Representatives, Jayapal is an award-winning national advocate for women’s, immigrant, civil, and human rights. Immigrating herself at 16 in order to achieve the American Dream, Jayapal is devoted to ensuring this same opportunity is accessible to all. To learn more about Jaypal’s campaign, visit www.pramilaforcongress.com 

Voice for Refuge is the first 501(c)4 organization created to advance pro-refugee policies at the national, state, and local level and to hold elected leaders accountable to upholding America’s legacy of welcome. Voice for Refuge is educating the public about the benefits of refugee resettlement, advocating for pro-refugee policies in the U.S. Congress and state legislatures, and increasing civic engagement among refugees through non-partisan voter education. Voice for Refuge will also promote the representation of refugees in government by supporting former refugees and pro-refugee candidates running for office at 

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Voice for Refuge Action Fund is a first-of-its-kind 501(c)(4) organization created to stand alongside and elevate refugee voices in the fight for justice and equality.