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U.S. Must Play Major Role in Solving Refugee Problem, Migration Authority Says

The greatest immigrant-receiving country in the world, the United States, must take the major responsibility in solving the problem of displaced persons by emigration and resettlement, Dr. Maurice R. Davie, chairman of the Sociology Department of Yale University, declared today upon the completion of a two-year investigation which he headed as director of the Committee for the Study of Recent Immigration from Europe.

The completion of the study was marked with a luncheon at the Commodore Hotel honoring Dr. Davie, which was attended by leading educators, sociologists and laymen. The study, “Refugees In America,” is a full and authoritative account regarding the refugees who have come to the United States to escape political and religious persecution in recent years.

Pointing out that refugee agencies in this country have a large and effective organization for assisting refugees, which is another factor favorable for immigration in America, Dr. Davie expressed the belief that “public opinion in the United States regarding refugees has been far in advance of the views of Congress.” Most of the credit for what America has done in rescuing, admitting and assisting refugees, he declared, belongs to private initiative and especially to interested organizations.

Dr. Leland Rex Robinson, chairman of the American Christian Committee for refugees, said that the study shows that the U.S. has failed to do what it could and should have done in solving the humanitarian problem of displaced persons and refugees. During this time when there was the greatest displacement of human beings in history, this country admitted the smallest number of immigrants in a century, he asserted, urging that at least 100,000 displaced persons a year for four years be admitted. Dr. Harry Emerson Fosdick made a similar plea.

Mrs. Irving M. Engel, chairman of the board of the United Service for New Americans, said that the study provides evidence to the American people of what they themselves stand to gain by offering a haven to the homeless. Ralf Ostrofsky, secretary of the study committee, urged that the committee continue to function.

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