The Biden Administration is falling short of the United States refugee admissions cap as of this year. The yearly refugee ceiling was established by President Joe Biden at 125,000 last October, but as of July, the program has only accepted 17,690 migrants. Advocates assert that the Biden administration won’t meet its challenging goal for the fiscal year 2022, but they point out that the refugee program is still in the process of being rebuilt.
Over the last year, humanitarian parole has allowed more than 70,000 Afghans to enter the United States. In addition, humanitarian parole has allowed almost 60,000 Ukrainians to enter the nation. Although this is a high number, these populations are not included in the goal number of refugees being counted so that number still stands very low.
The process of refugee admissions into the U.S. being so low is also impacted by the fact that refugee agencies are still in the process of rebuilding following the dramatic cut in staff, and funding that had occurred under the Trump Administration. People who have the chance enter the nation through humanitarian parole because the process is simpler. Specifically, those seeking special authorization to enter the United States in an emergency are granted humanitarian parole. The “parolees” can apply for legal status while they are in the United States, either through the asylum procedure or other types of sponsorship, if available, even if it does not necessarily result in permanent residency. Meanwhile, anybody who enters the country through the refugee program has a linear route to ultimate permanent residency and citizenship in the United States, but that process takes several years.