Refugee Assistance Program

Overview

The Office of Community Services of the Department of Social Services (DSS) is responsible for disbursing federal funds related to the resettlement of refugees in Connecticut.  Refugees are assigned by the U.S. State Department to local affiliates of national voluntary resettlement agencies in Connecticut.  DSS disburses federal refugee assistance program funds, administers refugee cash and medical assistance programs and monitors resettlement activity for individuals who qualify as refugees under international law.  A refugee can request to become a legal permanent resident after one-year residence in the U.S. and can apply for U.S. citizenship five years after their date of entry to the U.S.
 
DSS regional offices administer the Refugee Cash Assistance (RCA) and Refugee Medical Assistance (RMA) programs for refugees for up to eight months from their date of entry to the U.S.  DSS also provides refugees with temporary family assistance/cash assistance, medical coverage and food stamp assistance under those public assistance programs since refugees qualify as legal non-citizens.
 
The State contracts with the following agencies to provide resettlement services including case management, employment assistance, and additional supportive services to refugees:
 
The following are the total number of new refugee arrivals to Connecticut for the corresponding federal fiscal years (October 1 through September 30):
 
   FFY 2005  536               FFY 2008  381               FFY 2011  447          FFY 2014  545          FFY 2017   452
   FFY 2006  324               FFY 2009  351               FFY 2012  436          FFY 2015  819
   FFY 2007  502               FFY 2010  507               FFY 2013  548          FFY 2016  837