CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WAND) - Champaign will continue to allow refugees to resettle in the city after a vote from its city council Tuesday night.
The city had until Dec. 25 to decide if it would sign a letter of consent for accepting refugees. Its decision to accept them came in a 9-0 vote.
President Donald Trump signed an executive order in September cutting down the number of refugees allowed in the United States during the current fiscal year to 18,000. The number allowed was 30,000 in 2018.
Champaign is following the state of Illinois, which on Tuesday agreed in a letter sent by Gov. JB Pritkzer to the U.S. State Department to allow refugee admission. The governor said Illinois will "extend a warm welcome to refugees who have come and will be coming to Illinois".
Champaign's letter will also go to the U.S. State Department, along with the East Central Illinois Refugee Mutual Assistance Center, which The News-Gazette said assisted one family of refugees in 2018 and four others from Afghanistan who arrived in the U.S. with a special immigrant visa. It assists refugees with resettlement for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Lisa Wilson, executive director of that organization, asked Champaign to provide a letter of written consent by Dec. 20, "given the life-saving nature of this program".