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Impact of Covid-19 on migration

28 August 2020

Cover of International Migrations and the Covid-19 Pandemic book

A new book which looks at the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on migration, inequality and poverty has been coordinated and published by researchers at the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Brazil, and Dr Shailen Nandy from the School of Social Sciences.

International Migrations and the Covid-19 Pandemic, which has been published online for free and features the work of over 100 researchers, analyses the impact of the pandemic in Latin America, and its dynamics with migration and poverty.

Reflecting on his contribution, Dr Nandy explains “Poverty is one of the factors that drives migration. Growing economic, political and social inequality is fuelling instability in many countries, and it is natural for people to want to move to safe environments, where they can live and work in peace.

“The frequent demonization of migrants and refugees by politicians and the press in the UK is now being seen in countries like Brazil; populist politicians commonly associate migrant populations with problems like crime, violence and over use of public services.

“Research shows, however, that migrants are net contributors to societies, as they tend to be younger, are more likely to work and pay taxes, and are less dependent on public services.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated just how dependent Britain is on migrant workers, who work on the front lines either as health workers or in other services such as public transport.”

Since June 2018, Dr Nandy has been training Brazilian researchers and conducting research on the theme of poverty with migration and inequality. These investigations are being carried out in collaboration with Professor Ana Assis, Professor Rosana Baeninger and Professor Luís Vedovato of UNICAMP.

Professor Vedovato said: “This book is an important result of the strategic cooperation between Cardiff University and UNICAMP, brought to completion through the lead of Professor Munir Skaf.

“By publishing this book for free to we hope to make a contribution to facing the pandemic which, in Brazil, is making poverty and inequality grow both among migrants and nationals.”

The book is the result of a partnership between researchers at UNICAMP, Cardiff University, the United Nations Population Fund, the Brazilian Public Ministry of Labor, the Paz Mission and the Immigration Museum of the State of São Paulo.

The book, published in Portuguese, is available online.

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