Trump Tower among Chicago's most desirable refugee employers

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Refugees displaced by war, terrorism or persecution are moving to Chicago. One of the most desirable places for them to work? Trump Tower.

Officially known as the Trump International Hotel and Tower, the 98-story skyscraper on Chicago's riverfront has become so popular with refugees because they are paid up to $18.00 per hour for entry-level jobs. That's according to a Chicago-based organization that helps refugees who are "fleeing war, terror and persecution."

Illinois is currently ranked 10th nationally in the number of refugees resettled, with 3,125 permitted residency here in 2016.

Besides the Trump Tower, refugee aid officials told the I-Team that other Chicago-area employers popular with refugees are Tyson Foods, Five Star Laundry, Rivers Casino, Lettuce Entertain You and Eli's Cheesecake.

Since September 2015 the United States has admitted more than 117,000 refugees, including more than 1,000 since Trump became president on January 20.

But the inflow took a hit under a Trump executive order signed in January that banned citizens from seven Muslim-majority nations from entering the U.S. for 90 days. Last year according to state department data Muslims accounted for nearly half of all refugee admissions into the country.

The Trump executive order will reduce the number of refugees annually admitted into the U.S. from 110,000 to a mere 50,000 people-the lowest ceiling in 35 years. It is currently estimated that more than 23 million refugees-half of them children-are fleeing war and repression around the world.

Officials at the Trump Tower in Chicago have not responded to messages left by the I-Team. Eli's Cheesecake officials said they currently employ 10 refugees and many other new immigrants. Others couldn't put a number on their refugee work force.
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