ALBANY,N.Y. (NEWS10)– At this time, New York State is not aware of any federal request for Ukrainian Refugee resettlement, but Governor Kathy Hochul said they are welcome in New York State.
“Our hearts go out to all of the residents in that country that’s now under siege,” Governor Hochul stated at a press conference on Thursday. “We have in New York State, one of the largest Ukrainian populations outside of the county, and we are proud of this.”
Nearly 2,000 Ukrainians have made New York their new home since 2017— 14 of which resettled here between the months of October 2021 and January 2022.
Governor Hochul said she will continue to work President Biden’s Administration to offer support for those who need to seek shelter this state.
Both the federal government and the state work with organizations such as The U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants to help in the resettlement process. Right now the organization is urging Biden to offer protections for Ukrainians already here on visas.
“We are as an organization, calling upon the administration to immediately designate temporary protective status and deferred enforced departure for Ukrainians. So, this would provide protections for Ukrainians currently stateside in the United States and to provide work permits for people who cannot safely return to Ukraine,” explained Sara Lowry, a staff attorney for the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants.
While the resettlement process takes months, this wouldn’t be the first time New York State has welcomed those fleeing war-torn countries. Capitol correspondent, Jamie DeLine, was told 2,111 Afghan evacuees came to New York after US troops left Afghanistan this past summer. Many of them chose to resettle here.