World Refugee Day is Today

Immigrant and refugee affairs

Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-673-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.

June 20, 2020

Today is World Refugee Day

June 20 is World Refugee Day.  World Refugee Day was established by the United Nations to honor refugees and to raise awareness of and support for refugees around the world. 

A refugee is a person who has been forced to flee their country due to persecution or fear of persecution because of the person's race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group.

What is persecution? Persecution includes: serious physical harm, forced medical or psychological treatment, disproportionate punishment for a criminal offense, severe discrimination and economic persecution, and severe criminal extortion.

These concepts are especially relevant today.  After the killing of George Floyd graphically highlighted persecution that takes place here in the United States, the United Nations Human Rights Council has advanced a resolution to create a report on international human rights violations against Africans and people of African descent by law enforcement agencies, specifically referencing Mr. Floyd.

Our country has accepted fewer and fewer refugees every year of the current Presidential Administration. This year's annual cap on refugees to the United States, set in September 2019, is 18,000 people, the lowest number since the U.S. Refugee Resettlement Program began in 1980. The Refugee Cap is announced every year in September by the US State Department.

Refugees make important contributions to our society, here in Minnesota, around the country, and around the world. More information can be found here below:

UNHCR and World Refugee Day,

State of Minnesota Refugee Recognition month and more from the Minnesota Department of Human Services Refugee Programs Office 

Refugee Resettlement information from International Institute of Minnesota 

United Nations overview on Human Rights 

The City of Minneapolis is a Welcoming City. Please contact the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs to learn more. 

About the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs

The Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) is an office in the Neighborhood and Community Relations Department. For more information, please visit, email, or call 612-394-6018.

For reasonable accommodations or alternative formats please contact:

 Michelle Rivero, OIRA Director

Department of Neighborhood and Community Relations or 612-394-6018

Visit our webpage at:

People who are deaf or hard of hearing can use a relay service to call 311 at 612-673-3000. TTY users can call 612-673-2157 or 612-673-2626.

Para asistencia 612-673-2700, Yog xav tau kev pab, hu 612-673-2800, Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay 612-673-3500.