More than 45,000 Americans have applied to sponsor displaced Ukrainians

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According to data from DHS, over 45,000 Americans applied to sponsor Ukrainians who were displaced by war because of the Uniting for Ukraine program.

Since April 25, more than 6,500 Ukrainians have arrived in the U.S. under the Uniting for Ukraine program — the country’s largest private sponsorship program for refugees in decades.

American sponsors have identified 27,000 more Ukrainians who are eligible for U.S. immigration approval. accordiSend an email to CBS News

Prior to the war, refugees seeking refuge in the United States were resettled by nine organizations that received funding from the federal governments. These organizations help refugees access basic necessities and services, including housing, food and employment. 

The U.S. government has begun to reverse this trend through its Uniting for Ukraine program. This allows regular community members and other groups to finance the displacement of Ukrainians.

“I think this is a great case study for what is possible when the United States government gives the option for individuals and community groups to step forward and directly resettle refugees,”CBS News spoke with Matthew La Corte about his work as an analyst in immigration policy at the Niskanen Center.

According to the DHS data, approximately 15% of people who have submitted sponsor requests reside in New York. Other regions with high potential sponsor percentages include Chicago, Seattle and Philadelphia, Los Angeles (Miami), Washington, Sacramento, Portland, Cleveland, and Los Angeles. 

CBS reported that about 300 U.S. According to the DHS. About 50 USCIS (Citizenship and Immigration Services) employees were trained in reviewing Ukrainian sponsorship cases.

Potential sponsors must submit their application. Online applicationThe USCIS will examine their financial and household sizes, as well the number of potential sponsors. 

Next, background checks are performed. If USCIS approves the sponsorship bid, potential Ukrainian refugees may upload their information on the agency’s site. After passing background checks the Ukrainians are allowed to travel to America.

A difference with this program is that instead of being approved for refugee status — which offers a path to permanent residency — Ukrainians approved through Uniting for Ukraine will be processed under a humanitarian policy known as parole, which allows them to live and work in the U.S. for two years.

In addition to the expected arrivals at the border, the program could allow the U.S. more than half of the 100,000 Ukrainian refugees which President Biden has promised to welcome within the next few month.