New figures show how the UK has stepped up to support families fleeing the war in Ukraine – with 210,800 visas issued since the conflict began.
The Refugee Council today welcomed the way in which the Ukraine Family Scheme, Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme and Ukraine Extension Scheme have helped to provide safety for those fleeing the war.
Enver Solomon, CEO of the Refugee Council, said:
“The UK stepped up when the Ukraine war began, doing the right thing to provide protection for thousands of people forced to flee their homes. There have been challenges with lack of support to access long-term housing and a failure to provide government assistance to those on the family scheme.
“Despite this, the response has been in line with the values most of us in this country support – we reach out and give sanctuary to people in their hour of need.
“What is so disappointing is that the Government will not do the same for others facing similar challenges. People from Ukraine do not arrive here on small boats because there is a safe route – but if you are facing oppression in Eritrea, war in Syria or Sudan, persecution in Iraq or Iran, there is no visa scheme like that rightly created for Ukrainians.
“That’s why we have small boats packed with people from those countries who risk their lives to reach the UK and make an asylum claim which – because of the desperate situation they are in – will very often be granted with more than three quarters welcomed as refugees.”
- The figures on the Ukraine scheme are found here: Ukraine Family Scheme, Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme (Homes for Ukraine) and Ukraine Extension Scheme visa data – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
- Total visas issued: 210,800 (148,100 on Homes for Ukraine, 62,800 on the Family Scheme)
- Total arrivals: 154,600 (110,300 on Homes for Ukraine, 44,200 on the Family Scheme)
- Family scheme figures are from 4 March 2022 onwards, Homes for Ukraine from 18 March onwards