Tens of thousands of Ukrainians in the Czech Republic will be looking for new housing
The introduction of new housing payment rules for refugees from Ukraine in the Czech Republic starting from July 1st may lead to a mass migration of Ukrainian citizens. According to estimates by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs of the Czech Republic, this could affect about 50,000 individuals who will face the problem of finding new accommodation, as reported by Seznam Zprávy.
The Ministry of Labor of the Czech Republic has analyzed the potential situation following the introduction of new conditions for the residence of refugees from Ukraine. The ministry's prepared document warns about the possibility of internal migration and the risk of losing temporary residence for tens of thousands of people.
"There is a threat of serious housing problems, mass evacuation of refugees without a permanent place of residence to centers, including Prague, as well as mass return back to Ukraine. Municipalities should bear the consequences of this situation," states the document, which will be discussed during a government meeting. The estimated number of Ukrainian refugees who may be forced to relocate ranges from 38,000 to 50,000 individuals.
During the next two weeks after the introduction of the new rules, government agencies recommend activating crisis accommodation options and possibly expanding transportation capabilities to facilitate the return of people to Ukraine.
"Not everyone will be able to find new housing conditions, particularly due to the oversaturated real estate market with limited supply, and the rental fees for refugees are extremely high. Moreover, a portion of refugees' income will decrease due to reductions in social assistance," the document explains the problem.
Blanka Tollárová, a leading researcher at the Consortium of Non-Governmental Organizations Working with Migrants, notes that so-called mixed refugee families will find themselves in a difficult situation. These are families where some members belong to vulnerable groups and are entitled to priority housing with state funding from July onwards, while others, on the contrary, will lose this right in July.
Magda Faltová mentioned that until this week, it was not entirely clear how high the financial support for refugees will be starting in July. According to her, people lack sufficient information to make informed decisions regarding housing. However, the government claims to have informed refugees and apartment owners. In particular, a few weeks ago, the Ministry of Labor sent out letters with information about the upcoming changes.