Local News

Local thift store hires refugees, immigration ban has them worried

Local thift store hires refugees,...

SPOKANE, Wash. -  A local thrift store  provides work for refugees so they can thrive in the Spokane community, and now, workers there are worried about their future in the United States.

33-year-old Abdullah Alswaider came to Spokane with a Yemen passport in 2015.

“I could not get job there. I came to U.S. to have a good opportunity here in U.S. and I have family and care about them. Really,  I'm here to start new life,” said Alswaider.

He started his new life at the Global Neighborhood Thrift Store in Spokane which provides work and English learning classes for refugees like Alswaider.

Brent Hendricks is the non-profit's founder..

“Kind of as a stepping stone so they can get foot in the door and help them find work,” said Hendricks.

“They all accept us. We are one of the community to be together,” said Alswaider.

But now, after President Trump's recent executive order banning travel from seven major Muslim countries, including Yemen, Abdullah is worried he may never see his family again.

“Very terrible for us it's like oh my god,” said Alswaider. “My father, my mother, they cannot come here to U.S. because they have Yemeni passport.”

“It's pretty rough on people when they had some hope of bringing family members to safety. That is something America always stood for and people looked at us as Americans kind of leaders in that area and now that's all turned on its head,” said Hendricks. “The refugee ban is morally reprehensible, dangerous and foolish.”

And Alswaider says his future in the U.S. is up in the air.

“It's a hard feeling, yeah, very hard,” he said.