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Refugees Are Coming To Ohio. Here's Why And How They're Doing It

Refugees from Afghanistan, Syrian and Balkan Countries board a train in Munich, Germany
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Refugees from Afghanistan, Syrian and Balkan Countries board a train in Munich, Germany

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine's spokesman says the process is set by the federal government

Ohio has received 855 refugees from Afghanistan so far. More could be coming in the future.

Gov. Mike DeWine’s spokesman Dan Tierney says refugees themselves might want to go with family members that live in certain states. But Ohio doesn’t get to pick and choose refugees to come here.

“This is largely done at the federal level and Ohio’s role in this is to be a pass-through for funding and to provide information as it is available,” Tierney says.

The refugees can also choose a city from a list approved by the federal government and so far, Cleveland is the only Ohio city on that list but if refugees have family in other cities, they can be sent there. So, some are also going to Cincinnati, Akron, and Toledo. Or the federal government can just assign refugees to come to Ohio. But Tierney says all of those decisions are largely left up to the feds.

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