Hard hit by COVID-19, migrants seen facing ‘invisible wall’

In Australia, nearly 90% of migrants surveyed online said they were financially worse off because of the pandemic, while in Egypt, nearly 80% said their income had fallen by between 70% and 100% due to COVID-19 restrictions, according to a survey by the Red Cross Red Crescent Global Migration Lab.

The secretary general of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said, “Our research reveals what we are calling an ‘invisible wall’ that has blocked migrants – particularly those undocumented or in an irregular situation – from accessing basic services.”

Some nations have introduced measures to ensure migrants – regardless of their immigration status – have free access to COVID-19 testing and screening, the report noted.

But elsewhere, migrants have been unable to access COVID-19 care as they do not have a national identity or social security number. This barrier is likely to also affect access to vaccinations.

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