Washington, D.C. – As thousands of Ukrainian refugees flee their homes to escape threats posed by this week’s Russian invasion, Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) urges European Union nations to swiftly take steps to protect refugee families and children, including those traveling alone. Today, KIND President Wendy Young issued the following statement:
“KIND unequivocally condemns the threats to Ukrainian sovereignty placing millions of innocent civilian lives in the crosshairs of imminent danger. Ukrainian families and children need immediate protection and lifelines to escape escalating violence and instability. We urge European Union nations to immediately establish safe havens for them, implement steps that provide vital support for these refugees in this time of crisis, and stand sternly against threats forcing these families and children from their homes. The United States, which has indicated a willingness to accept Ukrainian refugees, should support the EU in this effort and immediately grant Temporary Protected Status to eligible Ukrainians currently in the United States. Against the backdrop of this chaotic and precarious invasion, KIND and its partners across Europe are focusing on protection efforts that ensure families remain unified and children fleeing alone are safe. We encourage nations to receive those fleeing Ukraine at the border, grant them access to asylum procedures, and help these refugees reach and reunify with family that may have fled to other parts of Europe. We will continue to work with our partners to monitor this situation to seek opportunities to advance the immediate protection of families and children.”
KIND envisions a world in which children’s rights and well-being are protected as they migrate alone in search of safety. Through its European Initiative, KIND helps unaccompanied children in Europe access free legal assistance, using its more than 12 years of success in providing pro bono representation to unaccompanied children in the U.S., Central America, and the U.K. KIND currently partners with legal aid and immigration policy experts in Greece, France, Ireland, Belgium, Italy, and the United Kingdom.
Media Contact: Megan McKenna, email@example.com, 202-631-9990