Refugees come to the United States for a variety of reasons. The most widely known reasons are to escape from war torn areas, or political/personal persecution. That being the case, several categories have been established to classify the people entering the United States.
* Refugees: Individuals granted refugee status by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) while outside the U.S. Refugees are unable to live in their country of origin because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution due to race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. Approximately 8,000-9,000 official refugees arrive in Texas annually.
** Asylees: Individuals granted asylum by the USCIS after entering the U.S. Asylees are unable to return to their country of origin because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution due to race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.
*** Parolees: Individuals with special permission to enter the U.S. under emergency conditions or when that person’s entry into the U.S. is considered to be in the public’s interest.
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