International

Business coalition aims to provide jobs to Afghan refugees

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation on Wednesday launched a coalition to connect Afghan refugees with jobs when they resettle in the U.S. 

The Coalition for Afghan Refugee Employment, which includes major employers such as Amazon, Walmart and UPS, aims to provide employment opportunities to tens of thousands over the next six months. 

"Through this effort, we're proud to bring American businesses together to fill a critical need - supporting the resilience and financial independence of Afghan refugees who are starting a new life in the U.S.," Carolyn Cawley, president of the Chamber of Commerce Foundation, said in a statement. 

The newly formed business coalition is joining Welcome.US, a campaign to help about 65,000 Afghan refugees resettle in the U.S. that is backed by former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

"We know that our new Afghan neighbors will contribute immeasurably to the country, including in the workforce," said Cecilia Muñoz and John Bridgeland, the co-chairs of Welcome.US.

The U.S. evacuated more than 120,000 people from Afghanistan as Taliban fighters took control of the nation's capital city, Kabul. The Biden administration formally withdrew from Afghanistan on Aug. 31, ending a 20-year conflict.

The administration is currently housing tens of thousands of Afghan refugees in military bases and has asked Congress for $6.4 billion in additional funding to fund the resettlement effort. 

Several companies announced measures to hire or provide assistance to the refugees following the Taliban's takeover, including Airbnb, which said it would provide temporary housing for up to 20,000 Afghans.

Outbrain