Mar 6, 2022 - Politics & Policy

How many Ukrainian refugees the U.S. has admitted

Data: Refugee Processing Center; Chart: Jacque Schrag/Axios

The number of Ukrainian refugees admitted to the U.S. has dropped recently, coinciding with the pandemic, government data shows.

Why it matters: The United Nations estimates more than 1.5 million Ukrainians have now fled Russia's invasion. It's not clear how many will want to be resettled elsewhere long term, but some refugee groups have begun calling on the Biden administration to do more to welcome them.

  • Last week, the Biden administration granted Ukrainians already in the U.S. a Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation. That shields them from deportation and lets them get work permits for 18 months.
  • Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited a refugee center in Poland over the weekend during a trip to assess needs for further U.S. assistance in the region.
  • "The United States is committed to doing anything we can, first of all to support the countries that are bearing the immediate burden of taking in Ukrainians, and then, as appropriate, if people seek refugee status in the United States, of course we will look at that and, I'm sure, act on that," Blinken told CNN on Sunday.

By the numbers: Although the previous administration drastically cut refugee admissions overall, the Trump years saw relatively large numbers of Ukrainians admitted.

  • In fiscal years 2018 through 2020, Ukrainians made up 14% of all refugees resettled into the U.S.
  • They made up just 4% of the total during the 2015-17 fiscal years.

Go deeper: Axios explains Ukraine

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