State Letter 15-09

FY 2016 – Cuban Haitian Social Services Set-Aside

Publication Date: August 12, 2015

To:  State Refugee Coordinators
        State Refugee Health Coordinators
        National Voluntary Agencies
        Other Interested Parties
From: Robert Carey
            Office of Refugee Resettlement

Subject: FY 2016 — Cuban Haitian Social Services Set-Aside

Based on discussions with Refugee State Coordinators and the Administration for Children and Families Division of Grants Policy it was determined that a discretionary grant award was not an efficient and effective mechanism given that ORR’s primary goal is to ensure funding follows incoming arrivals irrespective of panel scoring.

ORR received approval to issue awards through the more efficient formula grant process. This change will reduce the administrative burden to States as well as ensure a more proportional distribution of funding.

The ORR formula allocation will use Cuban and Haitian arrivals for the previous two fiscal years as a qualifying basis for the set-aside. The initial award allocation will also be based on that period so that States can maintain services as we transition from a discretionary to formula award process.   All states with total arrivals in FY2013 and FY2014 in excess of 350 Cuban and Haitian arrivals will qualify for this funding.  See attached table.

Funding will be included in the FY2016 quarterly Social Services allocation.  

States must report on all activities as part of their ORR-6 submission, including a summary in the narrative section of the report. The summary should include information related to the number of clients served as well as the type and frequency of services provided.

Services to refugees must be provided in accordance with 45 C.F.R. Part 400 Subpart I Refugee Social Services, §400.154 Employability Services and §400.155 Other Services. States receiving funds for Cuban Haitian entrants shall direct funding towards individuals most in need of additional support, including, but not limited to  the newly arrived, individuals without family or voluntary agency support or the long-term unemployed and unintegrated who are unable to access adequate services through mainstream assistance.

States receiving funds for Cuban and Haitian arrivals will focus on the following four program categories:
a) Employment services;
b) Health Support - Working with hospitals, and other health programs such as mental health, to support this population;
c) Vocational Services - Creating opportunities through adult and vocational education services;
d) Naturalization - Provide citizenship and naturalization preparation services.

Given the increase in recent Cuban and Haitian refugees and entrants, services should focus on the most recent arrivals. Allowable services and activities include:

  • Assessment, pre-employment counseling,  job development and placement services;
  • Services aimed at placing two or more family members in jobs in order to achieve self-sufficiency;
  • Supportive services, such as transportation and transitional child care to help Cuban or Haitian refugees and entrants maintain employment or participate in employment services;
  • Adult education and vocational education programs, including vocational English language training, literacy training, short-term skills training, and career counseling, recertification, degree programs provided to Cuban and Haitian entrants and refugees who would not be served through regular high school programs;
  • Mental health and medical services for Cuban and Haitian refugees and entrants who are not covered by existing local, State, or Federal programs;
  • Citizenship and naturalization services to help naturalize Cuban or Haitian refugees and entrants. Allowable activities include outreach, provision of enhanced English language training, civics instruction, and counseling and application assistance including interpretation and translation. Application fees for citizenship examinations are not allowable using the set aside funds.

As part of the Social Services grant, ORR will be enhancing monitoring to ensure the program is targeting services to best meet the needs of incoming Cuban and Haitian arrivals. ORR will be assessing the provision of these services and identifying best practices as a basis for future formula funding determinations and set-aside activities.  

Please direct any questions on this State Letter to Carl Rubenstein, DRA Director.

FY2016 Cuban Haitian Social Services Set - Aside Table

State Name  Total FY2013-FY2014 arrivals Total FY2016 Funding*
Florida 55,883 $15,121,793
Texas 4,984 $1,348,657
Nevada 1,942 $525,500
Kentucky 1,756 $475,169
New Jersey 712 $192,665
Arizona 711 $192,395
New York 615 $166,417
Pennsylvania 456 $123,392
California 452 $122,310
North Carolina 386 $104,451
Oregon 352 $95,250
Total 68,249 18,468,000

*FY2016 funding actions are subject to availability of funding and Congressional action

Current as of: