The City of Philadelphia and Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) are coordinating with the federal government’s Operation Allies Refuge to provide a point-of-entry location for individuals evacuated from Afghanistan.
PHL is the second airport in the country to welcome arrivals as part of this federally-led operation, in addition to Dulles International Airport in Virginia. Services are being offered in the Terminal A-East Baggage Claim by an array of City, state, and federal agencies as well as non-profit partners like the Red Cross and Salvation Army.
After individuals deplane and process through customs they are greeted by an interpreter who explains that the following is available:
- Culturally appropriate food and comfort items
- A general medical evaluation that includes a required COVID test, physical and mental health support services, and the opportunity to get the COVID vaccination (Note - there is a COVID containment area for quarantine and isolation should an evacuee test positive.)
- Escort to retrieve luggage
- Transportation to their next destination
- Space in the baggage claim for prayer / religious observance.
The City cannot confirm information on how many people are expected and when they are arriving. Reporters can contact the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security for more information. The City of Philadelphia will release a daily total of evacuees processed at PHL on its official Twitter account.
To support Operation Allies Refuge, visit: How you can help Afghan evacuees arriving in Philadelphia