The United Nations estimates that 65.2 million people have been forcibly displaced by war and persecution worldwide. This crisis affects the lives of millions of people and millions of people around the world. It’s important to be familiar with the refugees and refugees’ plight.
The plight of refugees has been a sore spot in the United States in recent years. There has been much debate about the number of refugees the U.S. should admit every year. However, what isn’t discussed as much is who these refugees are—and how many of them there are.
Who is a Refugee?
The refugee system was created to protect the most vulnerable people on Earth. The word “refugee” comes from the Greek REFUGE, meaning fleeing or seeking protection. Refugees are people who, because of war, persecution, or natural disaster, are unable or unwilling to return to their home countries or habitual residence. The USA Ukrainian refugees are the perfect example. Many women and children are forced to flee their homes to escape war, violence, and persecution.
The difference between refugees and a migrant is not always clear, and immigration policy officials regularly confuse the two. A refugee has been forced to flee their country because of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, political views, or membership in a particular social group. A migrant, on the other hand, is someone who migrates either for economic or social reasons but does not necessarily seek refuge. In the U.S., refugees are protected under American law through the U.S. Refugee Act of 1980. However, migrants are not.
Last year, the U.S. accepted 84,491 refugees worldwide, and that trend shows no sign of slowing down. As the world gets smaller, more people are displaced from their homes—and those people are finding safety in the United States. But how are people categorized when they first come into the country? Is every person a refugee, or is someone just a voluntary entrant?
Types of Refugees
As mentioned above, a refugee is a person who has been forced to leave their own country to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster. Their reasons for leaving their home country can also vary, but the most common is because their home country’s government is threatening their lives or they are afraid of being attacked or tortured.
Here are the different types of refugees.
An asylum seeker is a term for a person who has fled their own country and is seeking asylum in another country. These people hope their new country will provide them with the protection and shelter they did not receive in their own country.
An asylum seeker is closely similar to a refugee, a person who has fled their own country and been officially recognized as a refugee by a country. The refugee is given legal status and protection within the country they have fled to and are no longer an asylum seeker.
Normally, the process of obtaining asylum in the United States is a long and hard one. The application process alone can take more than one year, and those who are denied asylum are not eligible for appeal and must leave the country where they sought protection.
Asylum seekers spend most of their asylum application process in the U.S. without work authorization, and many live in poverty during this time. Asylum seekers are also not eligible for government assistance and have no health insurance. As a result, many live in poor conditions in refugee camps or rely on the support of family and friends.
Internally Displaced Person
A U.N. report estimates that more than 42 million people are displaced from their homes because of armed conflict, persecution, or natural disaster. United Nations agencies use the term “internally displaced person,” or IDP, to refer to civilians who have been forced to abandon their homes but have not crossed an international border.
These individuals seek safety anywhere they can find it—in nearby towns, schools, settlements, internal camps, even forests, and fields. In 2016, there were more than 40 million IDPs worldwide. For these individuals, the ability to return home is a distant dream.
A stateless person is not officially recognized as a citizen by any country; such a person does not have a nationality. Stateless people are not necessarily without citizenship. Some countries apply the term “stateless” to people who are “under the protection of” that country but do not possess its citizenship.
Statelessness has today been affected by the ‘war and terror’: many people have been deprived of nationality for security reasons. Today, many USA Ukrainian refugees are left in legal limbo, unable to obtain a passport or other official documents from any State.
The stateless population is estimated to be 11 million people, according to the UNHCR, but the true extent of statelessness is much higher than that. That’s because fewer than half of all countries worldwide report on statelessness. Some of the most populous countries in the world with large suspected stateless populations don’t report on statelessness at all.
Refugees who have returned to their home country are called returnees. They are people who have been forced to flee their homes due to persecution, war or natural disasters.
The term returnee is used by different organizations to describe those who have returned, are returning, or are planning to return to their countries of origin.
By country of origin, we mean the country of last or former habitual residence of the person.
Returnees – and returns – are different from forced returnees. These refugees and IDPs have been forced to return against their will.
This confusion stems from using the term” return” in the context of voluntary and involuntary return (also known as forced return) and the difference between returnees and returns.
Refugees face many obstacles in their home countries, often given little to no protection. Refugees often face discrimination, harassment, and violence. They can also face deportation or persecution.
Though refugees face these obstacles, they are more than this. Refugees are people who have survived their ordeals and deserve the right to live their lives freely and with dignity.