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More cash support for Poles who host refugees: gov't

21.04.2022 22:00
Poland’s government will extend its daily allowance for people who house refugees from Ukraine for a further 60 days, officials have said. 
Polands commissioner for war refugees from Ukraine, Paweł Szefernaker, meets reporters in Warsaw on Thursday, April 21, 2022.
Poland's commissioner for war refugees from Ukraine, Paweł Szefernaker, meets reporters in Warsaw on Thursday, April 21, 2022.Twitter/Polish Ministry of Internal Affairs and Administration

The policy move was announced on Thursday by the government’s commissioner for war refugees, Paweł Szefernaker.   

People who host refugees from Ukraine receive PLN 40 (EUR 9) per person per day, officials have told the media.

The allowance was originally offered for a period of up to 60 days following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24, state news agency PAP reported.

Szefernaker, who also serves as a deputy interior minister, told reporters: “The government will propose that the daily payment be extended for another 60 days.”

600,000 refugees staying with Polish families

He estimated that around 600,000 Ukrainian refugees were staying with Polish families.

Szefernaker added that the government would work with entrepreneurs and local governments to help refugees from Ukraine “support themselves, take up employment, and function normally” after the daily allowance expires on June 25.

Schools to 'fully integrate' Ukrainian children from September 1

Meanwhile, schools are preparing to "fully integrate" Ukrainian children from September 1, he said. 

Szefernaker added that the government was seeking to make sure that "the influx of pupils from Ukraine" did not diminish the quality of teaching for Polish schoolchildren.

New refugee wave?

According to Szefernaker, Poland is readying itself for a potential new wave of refugees, with the government “stocking up on beds” and preparing to convert sports and exhibition venues into refugee shelters.

Szefernaker said that those who had fled to Poland could start to relocate elsewhere only if other countries, or the European Union as a whole, “offer them accommodation, job opportunities and education possibilities for children.”

One such offer "has been prepared by Great Britain,” he added.

Almost 2.89 million refugees, 970,000 get Polish ID numbers

Szefernaker confirmed that Poland had welcomed nearly 2.89 million refugees fleeing the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

He added that by Thursday, 970,000 displaced people from Ukraine had received their personal ID numbers. The majority of this group, 95 percent, are women and children, according to Szefernaker.

The ID numbers, called PESEL, are needed to gain access to public services in Poland and enter into commercial agreements, such as housing lease, officials said.

Poland’s President Andrzej Duda last month signed into law a measure to offer wide-ranging support to Ukrainians escaping the Russian invasion of their country.

The measure grants them legal residence in Poland and ensures access to education, healthcare and social benefits.


Source: IAR, PAP