Where Ukrainian Refugees May End Up Settling in California – The New York Times

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President Biden announced last week that the United States would accept up to 100,000 refugees fleeing the conflict in Ukraine. Many of them, it turns out, may end up in California.
Refugees are likely to settle in regions with strong connections to their home country. And California has some of the nation’s biggest Ukrainian communities, including in the Los Angeles, San Francisco and Sacramento regions. (Other major Ukrainian hubs are New York, Seattle and Chicago.)
The Sacramento area has the highest concentration of Ukrainian immigrants in the country, with one in every 125 residents of Ukrainian descent, according to the Migration Policy Institute.
Already, the Ukrainian community there is mobilizing to provide food, shelter and support to those escaping the war, The Associated Press reported this week. The House of Bread church near Sacramento has been helping dozens of its member families get ready to house people arriving in California.
“No refugee is waiting for you to be ready for them,” Eduard Kislyanka, senior pastor at the church, told the news outlet.
In Auburn, near Sacramento, Paul and Rose Chorney’s home has turned into a way station of sorts for Ukrainian refugees: A couple and their three children occupy one of the three bedrooms, another family of four is sleeping in a camper in the driveway.
“There are going to be a lot more Ukrainian families coming, however they can,” Chorney, a Ukrainian whose family immigrated to the United States when he was 18, told my colleague.
Roughly 10 million Ukrainians have left their homes since the conflict began, about four million of whom have fled the country, my colleagues report. It is the largest displacement of Europeans since World War II, according to the United Nations.
Some Ukrainian tourists and students who were already in California when the war broke out have been allowed by the federal government to overstay their visas. Hundreds of Ukrainians seeking asylum here have already crossed into California from Mexico, sometimes through dangerous means.
The numbers of refugees are likely to keep growing as Russia continues to convey mixed signals about its aims for the war, now in its sixth week. Despite Kremlin claims that it was withdrawing from the outskirts of Kyiv, the capital, fighting continued in that area on Thursday, and Western officials said they saw little evidence of a Russian pullback.
“Russia maintains pressure on Kyiv and other cities, so we can expect additional offensive actions, bringing even more suffering,” the NATO secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg, said at a news conference.
If you want to keep up with the latest on Ukraine, you can follow breaking news from The New York Times here, or sign up for our nightly email about the conflict.
For more:
President Biden announced on Thursday that the United States would release up to 180 million barrels of oil from a strategic reserve in an attempt to bring down energy prices.
A ban on Russian oil has renewed a push to increase fuel production in California’s oil country. The Los Angeles Times visited a pocket of the San Joaquin Valley where the sanctions have brought a measure of hope.
California’s National Guard has been training Ukrainian forces since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Moratorium extension: California lawmakers voted Thursday to extend the state’s eviction ban for at least another three months, The Associated Press reports.
Historic moment: For the first time in California’s 171-year history, a woman has signed a bill into state law. Read more from The Associated Press.
Sports betting: California voters will get a chance in November to vote on legalizing sports wagering, which could unleash a huge new industry in the state, Politico reports.
Reparations: California’s major step toward reparations this week could lend momentum to similar stalled proposals elsewhere, The Associated Press reports.
Pipeline ruptures: U.S. officials on Thursday adopted a rule aimed at reducing deaths and environmental damage from oil and gas pipeline ruptures, a long-delayed response to explosions and spills in California and elsewhere, The Associated Press reports.
Unemployment fraud: Ten people in Arkansas were indicted in a bank fraud conspiracy for stealing California pandemic unemployment funds, The Arkansas Democrat Gazette reports.
Officer wounded: An off-duty Inglewood police officer was shot Thursday morning, The Associated Press reports.
School absences: Nearly half of Los Angeles Unified students have been chronically absent this year, The Los Angeles Times reports.
Health care: A new bill would fund scholarships for aspiring doctors in the Central Valley, KCRA reports.
Anti-gay protest: Anti-gay Christian protesters and counterprotesters clashed in downtown Guerneville, long a center of gay life, The Press Democrat reports.
Teacher strike: The Sacramento City Unified School District announced late on Wednesday that it had raised its offer to the striking teachers’ union, The Sacramento Bee reports.
Oldest national park ranger: Betty Reid Soskin, a 100-year-old park ranger at the Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park in Richmond, is hanging up her hat, The Associated Press reports.
Spicy peanut stew with ginger and tomato.
Today’s tip comes from Kevin Corcoran, who lives in Valencia:
“Death Valley has become my favorite national park, mainly for the backcountry opportunities, the places that can be reached only by foot, and not even by trail. Most of the park is still as rugged, untouched and wild as a thousand years ago.”
Tell us about your favorite places to visit in California. Email your suggestions to CAtoday@nytimes.com. We’ll be sharing more in upcoming editions of the newsletter.
We’ve recently been publishing your notes about why you love your corner of California.
If you’d like to submit a love letter to your California city, neighborhood or region — or to the Golden State as a whole — please email us at CAtoday@nytimes.com. We’ll keep sharing your missives in the newsletter.
Talk about a one-of-a-kind wedding proposal.
Harsh Shah, 35, took woodworking classes to learn how to carve a pasta stamp. Then he stamped a batch of corzetti, a coin-like pasta, with a personalized message.
In February 2021, he handed Laura Min McDonald, his girlfriend, her dinner — a plate of corzetti with pesto. She realized each piece of pasta was stamped with the words “Laura, will you marry me?”
It was the work of “an amazing person,” McDonald told the Times. “He’s really been this sort of steady and strong presence in my life as long as I’ve been with him.”
Shah and McDonald were married on March 31 in Tilden Regional Park in Berkeley.
Thanks for reading. I’ll be back on Monday. Enjoy your weekend — Soumya
P.S. Here’s today’s Mini Crossword, and a clue: More together mentally (5 letters).
Briana Scalia and Mariel Wamsley contributed to California Today. You can reach the team at CAtoday@nytimes.com.
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