Venezuelan refugees earn up to four times less than Brazilians

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Venezuelan refugees, who reside in shelters in Roraima, have an average income four times lower than Brazilians.

In absolute terms, Venezuelans in this condition receive an average of R$594.70 per month, while the Brazilian population has an average income of R$2.4 thousand.

These are some of the conclusions of the research “Limits and challenges to the local integration of refugees, refugees and migrants from Venezuela internalized during the Covid-19 pandemic”.

The results of the survey, prepared by UNHCR and UN Women, were obtained from the testimony of a thousand Venezuelans who came to Brazil, heard between March 2020 and April 2021.

Language is one of the main barriers for these refugees, according to the study. Currently, according to the data, 65% of them have difficulty understanding the Portuguese language.

“This problem is worldwide. We need to think of solutions that are not provisional. Refugees are often treated as a localized and temporary problem rather than as permanent citizens. The problem faced by Venezuelans affects Brazilian society as a whole”, highlighted the political scientist and doctor of law, Geraldo Tadeu.

However, the federal government’s project for the interiorization of Venezuelans, a measure that seeks to redistribute the refugee population across Brazil, gradually improves the conditions of the Venezuelan population, according to the UN survey. The average income among the interiorized population, for example, was an indicator that improved: the average salary in this group was R$ 1.3 thousand monthly, slightly higher than the minimum wage in force in Brazil, and much higher than the R$ 594.70 of the Venezuelans who remain sheltered in Roraima. So far, around 60,000 people have been transferred from the state that borders Venezuela to other units of the Brazilian federation. The number represents approximately 20% of the Venezuelan population that lives in Brazil.

Venezuela’s internalization strategy for refugees and migrants in Brazil also improves access to education for beneficiaries, compared to the population that remains sheltered in Roraima. The survey shows that 67.6% of girls and boys from interiorized groups are enrolled in schools and day care centers in the cities of destination. In the refugee population, which remains in the northern state of Brazil, this rate drops to 41.3%.

Finally, the understanding of the Portuguese language is also greater among the interiorized, when compared to Venezuelans who are still refugees. The survey shows that most internalized people (68.3%) understand the language well or perfectly. When a comparison by gender was performed, women indicated difficulty in understanding in a higher proportion than men (35.3% against 28.2%).

According to data from the Ministry of Social Development (MDS) website, up to October this year, 62,680 Venezuelans were internalized. The state that most received this population was Paraná (10,220), followed by Santa Catarina (9,702), Rio Grande do Sul (9,101) and São Paulo (9,040). Venezuelans represent 60% of the refugees that Brazil receives.

Reference: CNN Brasil

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