12 May 2017

Employment and housing remain the key challenges for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Ukraine, according to the latest round of the IOM National Monitoring System on Situation of IDPs in Ukraine, funded by the European Union*.

Three years into the conflict and displacement, the income situation remains one of the major challenges for many IDPs. According to the IOM survey, 45 per cent of IDP households have only enough funds for food. Some 21 per cent of displaced families have total incomes ranging from UAH 1,500  (USD 56) to UAH 3,000 (USD 113) per month, while the income of another 47 per cent is ranging from USD 114 to USD 264. Average IDP level of income per individual currently is UAH 1,991 (USD 75).

On the positive side, the level of IDPs being employed has slightly increased from 35 per cent in March 2016, when the first similar IOM survey was conducted, to some 42 per cent now. However, it is still quite low comparing to the level of employment before displacement: approximately one-third of IDPs who had a job before the conflict still cannot find a new one.

Other problematic issues are the living conditions and payment for rent and utilities. Most IDPs pay for their accommodation and 66 per cent live in a rented housing. A significant share of IDPs (22 per cent) lives with relatives or hosting families. Only one per cent lives in their own housing in the government-controlled part of Ukraine.

Despite the difficulties, 26 per cent of IDPs expressed intention not to move back to their places of origin. Thirty nine per cent would like to return when the conflict is over. Another 17 per cent said that they might consider returning in the future.

“Lack of support in finding relevant solutions for IDPs and returnees hinders their integration and creates dependencies on Government and aid organizations’ assistance,” says IOM Chief of Mission, Manfred Profazi. “With the National Monitoring System, IOM aims at assisting the Government of Ukraine in improving its knowledgebase about the situation and the needs of IDPs and to highlight emerging trends so that the Government can better develop evidence-based policies to address their needs.”

At the joint presentation of the survey, held in Kyiv today, Deputy Minister of Temporarily Occupied Territories and IDPs of Ukraine, Heorhii Tuka, stressed the importance of data collection and IOM’s external expertise for shaping up a strategy and planning practical steps to support IDPs wellbeing and integration.

IOM Ukraine's Chief of Mission Manfred Profazi, Deputy Minister of Temporarily Occupied Territories and IDPs of Ukraine Heorhii Tuka, and IOM Ukraine's Emergency and Stabilization Programme Coordinator Ester Ruiz de Azua presenting survey results

As of April, the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine has registered 1.583 million IDPs. Since the beginning of the crisis in Ukraine in 2014, IOM has provided support to some 138,000 conflict-affected people. Its current focus lies in providing income opportunities for IDPs and conflict-affected populations, and facilitating social cohesion, recovery and peacebuilding.

* IOM has been conducting surveys on the situation of IDPs in Ukraine on a regular basis since March 2016. In this round, covering March-April 2017, 1,025 IDPs were interviewed face-to-face, and 3,312 IDPs registered by the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine were interviewed by phone across the country.