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Where refugees in Michigan are arriving from

Written by:
February 8, 2024
Robsonphoto // Shutterstock

Where refugees in Michigan are arriving from

During the past five decades, the U.S. has resettled over 3 million refugees, making it one of the leading countries for finding new homes for people fleeing violence, persecution, and war.

In 2021, then-President Donald Trump lowered the annual cap of refugees that could be admitted into the country to 15,000. Even as the Biden administration has raised the ceiling to 125,000, the annual number of refugees arriving in the U.S. didn't immediately bounce back to pre-Trump administration levels. The numbers are increasing though, with over 25,000 refugees arriving in the U.S. in the 2022 fiscal year, twice the 2021 total.

Refugee arrivals during the 2023 fiscal year dramatically outpaced the prior two years, reaching over 60,000 from October 2022 to September 2023.

In January 2024, the greatest number of refugees admitted by the U.S. came from Congo, Syria, and Afghanistan. Each nation faces a unique set of circumstances that can make their citizens unsafe if they stay in their home country.

For the last three decades, Congo, also called the Democratic Republic of Congo, has been struggling with a series of civil wars and internal battles that have left millions of people displaced, both internally and externally, with many people fleeing to neighboring countries. Syria has seen more than 5 million refugees flee to neighboring nations since 2011 while a longstanding civil war rages, with an additional 6.8 million people forced from their homes and seeking refuge elsewhere in the country. Afghan refugees have been fleeing to neighboring countries for decades, especially to Pakistan and Iran, which combined host over 8 million Afghans.

Stacker referenced data from The Refugee Processing Center to compile statistics on the number of refugees and their countries of origin resettled in Michigan in January 2024.

January refugee statistics
Countries where refugees arrived from in January
To Michigan:
#1. Syria: 149
#2. Congo: 51
#3. Iraq: 38
#4. Afghanistan: 31
#5. Mali: 12
#6. Burundi: 8
#6. Venezuela: 8
#8. Ukraine: 7
#9. Burma: 5
#10. Pakistan: 3
#11. Central African Republic: 2
#11. Guinea: 2
#13. Honduras: 1
#13. Iran: 1
#13. Rwanda: 1
#13. Sudan: 1
#13. Uganda: 1

To the U.S. as a whole:
#1. Afghanistan: 1,723
#2. Congo: 1,695
#3. Syria: 1,356
#4. Burma: 765
#5. Guatemala: 540

States that accepted the most refugees in January:
#1. California: 803
#2. Texas: 779
#3. New York: 645
#4. Pennsylvania: 492
#5. Arizona: 401

Read on to see the countries that Michigan has accepted the most refugees from since the start of the fiscal year in October 2023.

People buying spices at a street market in Damascus
1 / 28
hanohiki // Shutterstock

#1. Syria

Refugees that arrived from Syria since October 2023
To Michigan: 558

To the U.S. as a whole: 5,837
Top states receiving refugees from Syria
#1. New York: 616
#2. Michigan: 558
#3. Pennsylvania: 419
#4. California: 325
#5. Ohio: 315

Woman carries basket through street in Bukavu
2 / 28
Katja Tsvetkova // Shutterstock

#2. Congo

Refugees that arrived from Congo since October 2023
To Michigan: 303

To the U.S. as a whole: 7,408
Top states receiving refugees from Congo
#1. Kentucky: 685
#2. Texas: 636
#3. Arizona: 541
#4. Ohio: 513
#5. New York: 471

Afghan women in burkas pass by a man outside a market
3 / 28
Canva

#3. Afghanistan

Refugees that arrived from Afghanistan since October 2023
To Michigan: 106

To the U.S. as a whole: 4,626
Top states receiving refugees from Afghanistan
#1. California: 998
#2. Virginia: 530
#3. Texas: 377
#4. Washington: 327
#5. Maryland: 199

Elevated view of Baghdad street scene
4 / 28
Focus and Blur // Shutterstock

#4. Iraq

Refugees that arrived from Iraq since October 2023
To Michigan: 88

To the U.S. as a whole: 676
Top states receiving refugees from Iraq
#1. California: 136
#2. Michigan: 88
#3. Washington: 38
#4. Nebraska: 36
#5. Texas: 35

An aerial view of caracas, Venezuela.
5 / 28
Canva

#5. Venezuela

Refugees that arrived from Venezuela since October 2023
To Michigan: 21

To the U.S. as a whole: 1,274
Top states receiving refugees from Venezuela
#1. Florida: 268
#2. Texas: 157
#3. Tennessee: 76
#4. North Carolina: 62
#5. Illinois: 59

Woman crossing road by Medlar Market in Asmara
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Dave Primov // Shutterstock

#6. Eritrea

Refugees that arrived from Eritrea since October 2023
To Michigan: 18

To the U.S. as a whole: 536
Top states receiving refugees from Eritrea
#1. Washington: 51
#2. Maryland: 49
#3. Texas: 47
#4. North Carolina: 33
#5. Ohio: 32

A horse-drawn taxi passes through a busy shopping area
7 / 28
Chantal de Bruijne // Shutterstock

#7. Burma

Refugees that arrived from Burma since October 2023
To Michigan: 16

To the U.S. as a whole: 2,073
Top states receiving refugees from Burma
#1. Illinois: 218
#2. New York: 200
#3. Texas: 189
#4. Georgia: 142
#5. Indiana: 138

Wide view of traditional, older buildings on a hillside in Yemen.
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Canva

#7. Yemen

Refugees that arrived from Yemen since October 2023
To Michigan: 16

To the U.S. as a whole: 79
Top states receiving refugees from Yemen
#1. Michigan: 16
#2. Georgia: 13
#3. Arizona: 8
#3. Montana: 8
#5. Connecticut: 6

Muslim woman in hijab waking on streets of Hargeisa
9 / 28
Dave Primov // Shutterstock

#9. Somalia

Refugees that arrived from Somalia since October 2023
To Michigan: 15

To the U.S. as a whole: 957
Top states receiving refugees from Somalia
#1. Minnesota: 332
#2. Ohio: 85
#3. Arizona: 61
#4. New York: 54
#5. Georgia: 48

Woman carrying child to Lviv train station on snowy day
10 / 28
Ruslan Lytvyn // Shutterstock

#9. Ukraine

Refugees that arrived from Ukraine since October 2023
To Michigan: 15

To the U.S. as a whole: 625
Top states receiving refugees from Ukraine
#1. Washington: 208
#2. California: 83
#3. Ohio: 37
#4. New York: 34
#5. Florida: 32

Many people on a dirt street in Shendi
11 / 28
Matyas Rehak // Shutterstock

#11. Sudan

Refugees that arrived from Sudan since October 2023
To Michigan: 13

To the U.S. as a whole: 572
Top states receiving refugees from Sudan
#1. Pennsylvania: 42
#2. New York: 34
#3. Tennessee: 32
#4. Georgia: 31
#5. Ohio: 30

An aerial drone view of niarela Bakamo, Mali
12 / 28
Canva

#12. Mali

Refugees that arrived from Mali since October 2023
To Michigan: 12

To the U.S. as a whole: 101
Top states receiving refugees from Mali
#1. South Carolina: 17
#2. New York: 14
#2. Pennsylvania: 14
#4. Michigan: 12
#5. Missouri: 10

Group of children playing soccer on a rural road
13 / 28
sandis sveicers // Shutterstock

#13. Central African Republic

Refugees that arrived from Central African Republic since October 2023
To Michigan: 9

To the U.S. as a whole: 180
Top states receiving refugees from Central African Republic
#1. Texas: 34
#2. Missouri: 21
#3. Massachusetts: 16
#4. New York: 13
#4. Pennsylvania: 13

Burundian people gather at an outside market
14 / 28
Rostasedlacek // Shutterstock

#14. Burundi

Refugees that arrived from Burundi since October 2023
To Michigan: 8

To the U.S. as a whole: 121
Top states receiving refugees from Burundi
#1. New York: 22
#2. Texas: 19
#3. Maryland: 13
#4. Arizona: 11
#5. Georgia: 9

Men gathered in the streets with motorcycles in Juba
15 / 28
punghi // Shutterstock

#14. Republic of South Sudan

Refugees that arrived from Republic of South Sudan since October 2023
To Michigan: 8

To the U.S. as a whole: 490
Top states receiving refugees from Republic of South Sudan
#1. Connecticut: 53
#2. Nebraska: 48
#3. Maryland: 39
#4. Colorado: 36
#5. Texas: 33

People gather in a urban park on the streets of Tehran
16 / 28
Andrew V Marcus // Shutterstock

#16. Iran

Refugees that arrived from Iran since October 2023
To Michigan: 6

To the U.S. as a whole: 175
Top states receiving refugees from Iran
#1. California: 93
#2. Texas: 14
#3. Illinois: 9
#3. Washington: 9
#5. Georgia: 8

Aerial drone shot of Conakry, Guinea.
17 / 28
Flightseeing-Germany // Shutterstock

#17. Guinea

Refugees that arrived from Guinea since October 2023
To Michigan: 5

To the U.S. as a whole: 63
Top states receiving refugees from Guinea
#1. Colorado: 15
#2. Georgia: 7
#3. Washington: 5
#3. Michigan: 5
#3. Pennsylvania: 5

Woman walking on busy street in Kampala with basket of mangos
18 / 28
Vlad Karavaev // Shutterstock

#18. Uganda

Refugees that arrived from Uganda since October 2023
To Michigan: 4

To the U.S. as a whole: 33
Top states receiving refugees from Uganda
#1. Missouri: 5
#2. Massachusetts: 4
#2. Michigan: 4
#2. Washington: 4
#5. New York: 2

People walking through the Chitta Gate in the old town area of Lahore
19 / 28
W_NAMKET // Shutterstock

#19. Pakistan

Refugees that arrived from Pakistan since October 2023
To Michigan: 3

To the U.S. as a whole: 399
Top states receiving refugees from Pakistan
#1. Pennsylvania: 57
#2. Texas: 45
#3. North Carolina: 36
#4. Virginia: 33
#5. New York: 25

A distant view of Mount Victoria in Cameroon.
20 / 28
Canva

#19. Cameroon

Refugees that arrived from Cameroon since October 2023
To Michigan: 3

To the U.S. as a whole: 70
Top states receiving refugees from Cameroon
#1. Pennsylvania: 10
#2. Texas: 9
#3. Massachusetts: 6
#4. California: 5
#5. New Jersey: 4

People standing in front of shops by roadside
21 / 28
Beata Tabak // Shutterstock

#19. Ivory Coast

Refugees that arrived from Ivory Coast since October 2023
To Michigan: 3

To the U.S. as a whole: 57
Top states receiving refugees from Ivory Coast
#1. Pennsylvania: 10
#2. Minnesota: 8
#3. Massachusetts: 6
#4. Arkansas: 5
#5. Florida: 4

Pedestrians on a street in Bogota, Columbia
22 / 28
Matyas Rehak // Shutterstock

#19. Colombia

Refugees that arrived from Colombia since October 2023
To Michigan: 3

To the U.S. as a whole: 385
Top states receiving refugees from Colombia
#1. Florida: 55
#2. Texas: 39
#3. Washington: 32
#4. North Carolina: 31
#5. New York: 24

People selling bananas at a street market in Huye
23 / 28
Oscar Espinosa // Shutterstock

#23. Rwanda

Refugees that arrived from Rwanda since October 2023
To Michigan: 2

To the U.S. as a whole: 56
Top states receiving refugees from Rwanda
#1. North Carolina: 11
#2. South Carolina: 10
#3. Illinois: 6
#4. Indiana: 5
#4. Kentucky: 5

An aerial view of Kingston, Jamaica.
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Canva

#23. Jamaica

Refugees that arrived from Jamaica since October 2023
To Michigan: 2

To the U.S. as a whole: 13
Top states receiving refugees from Jamaica
#1. California: 2
#1. Colorado: 2
#1. Michigan: 2
#1. North Carolina: 2
#1. Ohio: 2

Woman and child on busy market street of Copan
25 / 28
amnat30 // Shutterstock

#23. Honduras

Refugees that arrived from Honduras since October 2023
To Michigan: 2

To the U.S. as a whole: 369
Top states receiving refugees from Honduras
#1. Texas: 75
#2. Florida: 40
#3. Georgia: 21
#4. New York: 20
#4. California: 20

People walking on the street in Aksum
26 / 28
Artush // Shutterstock

#23. Ethiopia

Refugees that arrived from Ethiopia since October 2023
To Michigan: 2

To the U.S. as a whole: 124
Top states receiving refugees from Ethiopia
#1. Minnesota: 38
#2. Washington: 14
#2. Georgia: 14
#4. Ohio: 12
#5. North Carolina: 6

Daily scene of tuktuks, street stalls and motorbikes in San Pedro
27 / 28
Lauren Squire // Shutterstock

#27. Guatemala

Refugees that arrived from Guatemala since October 2023
To Michigan: 1

To the U.S. as a whole: 1,325
Top states receiving refugees from Guatemala
#1. California: 177
#2. North Carolina: 103
#3. Texas: 97
#4. Florida: 77
#5. New York: 69

Fishermen sorting nets on wooden boat at beach in Robertsport
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Fabian Plock // Shutterstock

#27. Liberia

Refugees that arrived from Liberia since October 2023
To Michigan: 1

To the U.S. as a whole: 5
Top states receiving refugees from Liberia
#1. Kansas: 3
#2. Michigan: 1
#2. South Carolina: 1

This story features data reporting and writing by Emma Rubin and is part of a series utilizing data automation across 45 states.

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