For decades, the United States has led the world in refugee resettlement. In 2016, for instance, a total of 97,000 refugees arrived in America from numerous countries. These refugees were often escaping persecution, war, famine and other life-threatening issues in their countries of origin.

Things have changed drastically in the last few years, though, as the U.S. has slashed the number of refugees allowed in the country. In 2017, statistics show that the U.S. only allowed 33,000 refugees to arrive. Graphs show an unprecedented drop in such a short time — though it is worth noting that other countries, like Australia and Canada, also saw significant drops around the same time.

The U.S. total fell again in 2018, dropping to 23,000. Meanwhile, Canada stayed roughly even to what they did in 2017, allowing 28,000 refugees to resettle there. That means that Canada is now the world leader in refugee resettlement, passing the United States and staying firmly above both the U.K. and Australia.

While the declines in the United States do appear to have slowed down from the massive drop between 2016 and 2017, the numbers are still falling and it will be interesting to see how this trend continues in the coming years.

At the same time, it is important for those who want to move to the United States, either as refugees or as immigrants, to understand how things have shifted and what that might mean for their chances of entering the country. Now more than ever, it is crucial for them to know all of the legal steps they need to take.