Baton Rouge Catholic Charities anticipates helping Syrian refugees

Baton Rouge Catholic Charities anticipates helping Syrian refugees

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Louisiana could be affected by war in the Middle East.

The White House said some migr ants fleeing Syria could be brought to Baton Rouge. The proposal is to spread 10,000 Syrian refugees across the country.

That includes possibly placing migr ants in Lafayette, Metairie and Baton Rouge where Corina Salazar of the Catholic Charities would work with them.

"Helping them set up apartments, helping them get a job, which is basically the biggest goal for refugees is to become self-sufficient," said Salazar, the state coordinator of the Louisiana Office for Refugees.

Salazar said the Catholic Charities will step in as soon as migr ants arrive, even picking them up at the airport. However, it is still unknown when they would get to Baton Rouge and exactly how many would come.

"If they don't pass the security check and if they don't pass the medical check, they just don't come to the United States, period," said Salazar.

She said that is also reason to not fear any threats to national security. A former FBI chief shared his thoughts on that.

"If I was in charge of ISIL, logistically, I'd take advantage of this situation and put my people in, into the United States. Now with that said, the FBI is on top of this big time," said Jim Bernazzani, former FBI chief in New Orleans.

Salazar said since the war in Syria began a few years ago, 1,500 Syrians have come to America. That number is lower than expected.

In Baton Rouge, last year's refugee totals from around the world were about 300.

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