LinkedIn Expands Refugee Support Program to the U.S.

January 29, 2017

LinkedIn is committed to creating economic opportunity for all members of the global workforce, regardless of country of origin or religious belief. These are precisely the values on which our country was founded. While we can’t control policies around entry of refugees into countries, we can lead with opportunity and help newly settled refugees find economic livelihood. Indeed, our country was built in large part by the work of immigrants and their descendants - and like our foremothers and forefathers, refugees are seeking that same opportunity to contribute.

Consistent with these beliefs, we are accelerating pre-existing plans to expand our refugee program to the U.S. to support refugees already residing in this country. In partnership with the International Rescue Committee (IRC), this week we will start providing financial resources and training to IRC staff to help newly settled refugees more quickly find jobs that leverage the skills they are bringing into the U.S. economy. More specifically, LinkedIn’s support will help the IRC implement economic empowerment programs in its 30 U.S. offices to help their clients achieve their ultimate goal of economic self-sufficiency.

We know these programs work. For more than a year, we’ve been working to help refugees find jobs in their new countries. This is part of our overall effort to develop innovative programs that help communities like refugees, middle-skills workers, underserved youth, veterans, and the long-term unemployed find mentors, training, and jobs. In February 2016, LinkedIn’s refugee program, Welcome Talent, launched as a pilot with the goal of connecting refugees to internships in Sweden and encouraging employers to post opportunities for refugees on LinkedIn. During this pilot, we partnered with more than 50 companies and helped roughly 2,000 refugees like Marwan and Jack. In October, we expanded the Welcome Talent program to Canada. In collaboration with Canadian nonprofits like Refugee Career Jumpstart Project and COSTI as well as government agencies like Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), we are helping connect refugees to jobs.

LinkedIn has a unique opportunity to use our platform to help especially skilled refugees find economic opportunity more quickly. And, we are seeing firsthand the economic contribution and success they are having in their new countries. Similarly, we know that LinkedIn is a stronger and better company because of the diversity of our workforce. We are grateful to have world class talent from these recently affected countries working for us and will do everything in our power to protect their status.  

More broadly, we’re fortunate to be a part of Microsoft, who outlined their beliefs on this issue, and look forward to working with them, policymakers, other companies, and civil society to promote immigration policies that recognize and promote economic growth for all.