Only 2,700 Visas Granted Under UK’s Homes For Ukraine Scheme
The department also released updated figures about the number of people who have been granted visas to come to stay with British relatives. The Ukraine Family scheme, which has been running since the start of March, has issued 22,800 visas.
More than 3.9 million refugees have left Ukraine, with the vast majority of them settling in Poland, according to the UNHCR. An estimated 6.5 million people have been displaced within Ukraine.
Dozens of people who hoped to bring refugees to the UK under the Homes for Ukraine scheme have contacted the Guardian to express frustration at the slowness of the visa granting system. More than 150,000 people signed up to express interest in hosting refugees.
Applicants have complained that there is no way to track applications, leaving refugees uncertain about whether to begin travelling to the UK, or to remain in Ukraine. Some people have complained that the online form is badly designed, contains glitches and is difficult to complete if English is not your first language.
Others have struggled with the amount of documentation needed, questioning whether it is realistic for people fleeing war zones to have brought bank statements, or other documentary evidence proving they were resident in Ukraine.
Some people have reported that some family members have been granted visas while others have not, leaving them with difficult decisions about whether to split families as they try to seek safety.
Numerous potential hosts have contacted the Guardian describing their fears for the safety of refugees they are hoping to host, who are waiting, often in unsuitable accommodation, for visas to be granted.