California-based documentary filmmakers Andrea Meller and Marisa Pearl have collaborated on ‘Hotel USA’, the initial piece in a series of films about refugees.
They write in the New York Times that they made the film over six days with the help of the International Organization for Migration, the UN Migration Agency that has been supporting refugee resettlement since the aftermath of World War II.
“The men and women of IOM, identified by their blue vests, guide refugees from their initial travel point, where they also conduct health assessments and cultural competency classes, all the way to their domestic flight in the states. The majority of IOM agents we met had come here as refugees themselves and could vividly recall their own first moments in the United States.”
“IOM agents continue to greet refugees landing at our multiple ports of entry, but the number of refugees accepted to the United States is adjusted each year by the executive branch. As our nation determines its future role in this process, we hope that this film will move us to contemplate more deeply the meaning of sanctuary and the extent to which we stand for it.”