Ukraine Parole Program Unnecessarily Limits Welcome

Please see below statement from Refugees International’s Deputy Director for the Americas and Europe Dr. Yael Schacher:

“The Biden administration’s creation of a temporary, privately sponsored parole pathway to the United States for Ukrainians is welcome for its innovation and intent. 

But the administration missed an opportunity to make more robust use of the U.S. refugee admissions program, which was established to respond effectively to refugee crises and provides needed services and a path to permanency for refugees. 

A parole program that relies on a U.S. relative or tie for all support cannot be a pathway to the United States for some who most need it or ensure that all who do arrive in the United States avoid precarity and limbo (because they will lack health insurance, the immediate ability to work, and secure legal status, for example). 

The program announcement also contains an unnecessary limit on the right to seek asylum at the U.S. southern border at a time when the administration should be firm in its commitment to end all policies, like Title 42 and Remain in Mexico, that nullify that right. Access to asylum and assurance against non-refoulement must be the norm for all those seeking safety at the border, whether Ukrainians, Hondurans, Cameroonians, or Haitians. 

U.S. policies should foster welcome not only by Americans with large financial means and not only for refugees of one nationality. Refugees International is committed to helping grow support among all Americans for welcoming the forcibly displaced from around the world.”

For press inquiries, please contact Refugees International’s VP for Strategic Outreach Sarah Sheffer at

PHOTO BANNER CAPTION: A woman stands between damaged stores at a local market after recent shelling in the northern outskirts of Kharkiv, Ukraine. Photo Credit: SERGEY BOBOK/AFP via Getty Images