Fewer refugees resettle in South Dakota

A slowdown in application processing causes the low number of arrivals
Published: Jan. 10, 2022 at 4:27 PM CST
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PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The agency that oversees refugee resettlement in South Dakota says there has been a noticeable decline in the number of people resettling in the state over the last few years.

According to Lutheran Social Services, South Dakota welcomed 52 refugees in 2021, compared to 439 in 2016. More than half of the people resettling in the state last year came from the Democratic Republic of Congo in Central Africa.

Lutheran Social Service president Rebecca Kiesow-Knudsen says an international slowdown in application processing the past four to five years has caused the low number of arrivals. The processing can take 18 months to two years.

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