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  • People walk around Independence Square (Plaza de la Independencia) in Montevideo, Uruguay. August 1, 2020.

    People walk around Independence Square (Plaza de la Independencia) in Montevideo, Uruguay. August 1, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 13 August 2020
Opinion

From March to June, concurring with the pandemic, 43,996 people applied for social aid. Over 80 percent of them requested food or shelter, because of homelessness.

Uruguay Social Development Ministry (Mides) said on Thursday that poverty would increase in 2020, especially after the government withdrew 30 percent of financial aid funds.

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"Even in a context of uncertainty, it seems certain that the services and benefits of Mides will maintain a level of demand by the population considerably higher than in recent years," Mides said.

According to Mides, a funds withdrawal by the Luis Lacalle Pou administration would harm gender-based violence victims and other vulnerable sectors amidst the pandemic. The ministry forecasts the poverty index in 2020 would exceed 2019's rate in about 35.6%. 

In July, Mides disclosed a report on homelessness increase during the pandemic and stressed over 60 % of those with no housing rely on public resources.

From March to June, concurring with the pandemic, 43,996 people applied for aid. Over 80 percent of them requested food or shelter because of homelessness.

The left-wing Broad Front party (Frente Amplio) created Mides in 2005 to guarantee social welfare through aid and development plans.

"The population would be left out of the hands of the state," Mides said.

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