Washington, DC — In response to the Biden administration announcing a parole program welcoming displaced Ukrainians with U.S. ties, CWS calls on the administration to additionally use the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP), and other immigrant pathways, to provide more sustainable protection for those at-risk as soon as possible. Today’s announcement of “Uniting for Ukraine” will provide access to humanitarian parole for 100,000 Ukrainians, and certain foreign nationals living in Ukraine, impacted by the ongoing Russian invasion. CWS welcomes this while noting, however, that parole is only a temporary solution and will not provide the displaced with the certainty and support they desperately need to build new lives in safety.
“Humanitarian parole may stop the bleeding, but it will not be enough to allow those impacted by the conflict in Ukraine to fully heal. We must extend a lifeline to vulnerable Ukrainians while also providing longer term solutions for families fleeing the violence of war. We strongly urge President Biden to offer these families access to critical services and permanent protections, and to also extend humanitarian protections to third country nationals who had previously been displaced to Ukraine,” said Katherine Rehberg, Vice President for Programs at CWS. “Many Ukrainian refugees are arriving with only the clothes on their backs and are in need of vital resettlement services and case management. Healthcare, employment services, school enrollment for children and other important supports will help our new neighbors start building new lives as empowered members of our communities.”
CWS notes that after years of neglect, it is clear how much the United States needs a fully strengthened resettlement program. When robustly supported, the United States would not have to scramble to provide life-saving services to refugees, from Ukraine, Afghanistan, and beyond.
CWS further calls on the administration to expand resettlement of at-risk Afghans who remain overseas, including in Afghanistan and other host countries, and urges Congress to immediately pass an Afghan Adjustment Act so that Afghan evacuees have an opportunity to apply to become lawful permanent residents. President Biden must prioritize ensuring that all those fleeing violence and persecution can build the futures they deserve.
For more information or to speak with Rehberg, contact email@example.com.