• Tuesday, Jun 22, 2021
  • Last Update : 04:19 am

Overseas migrant families reduce daily food intake

  • Published at 10:51 am July 28th, 2020
Migrant Workers
File Photo: Female migrant workers returning from Saudi Arabia Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

A study unveiled on Monday on the impact of Covid-19 on international migrant households stated these scenario

At least 63% of overseas migrants families reduced milk consumption, while 90% reduced meat and 81% reduced fish consumption in their food intake. 

A study unveiled on Monday on the impact of Covid-19 on international migrant households stated these scenario. 

Bangladesh Civil Society for the Migrants (BCSM) and Refugee and Migratory Movements Research Unit (RMMRU) jointly presented the report findings in a webinar. 

They interviewed 200 households in 21 districts over phone, where 65 households have children less than seven years of age. 

Among these families, 72% reduced milk consumption, 74% reduced meat and 43% reduced egg consumption in their food intake. 

RMMRU chair Prof Dr Tasneem Siddiqi gave this information during her presentation. 

“We are not saying that this study fully reflects the current Covid-19 crisis as we interviewed a few respondents due to the pandemic. But the study provides us some qualitative insights,” she said. 

According to the study, Before the Covid-19 outbreak, monthly household expenditure on average was Tk17,000, but economic downturn forced it to nosedive to Tk7,300. 

Family expenditure also dropped by 43% during the pandemic. 

61% families did not receive remittance in last three months 

According to the study findings, 61% households did not receive any remittance over the last three months. 

The families which received remittance, however, experienced a drop of 36%. 

At least 39% family received on average Tk30,000 per quarter, which was Tk47,000 per quarter before the pandemic. 

Another finding was where 69% female migrant workers remitted, as opposed to 30% male migrant workers amid the Covid-19 pandemic. 

How migrants families depend on remittance

For 57% of the families, remittance is the only source of income, which means these families are solely dependent on remittance. 

Around 18% of the interviewed families depend on remittance for three-fourths of family income, while remittance comnstituted for half of the family income for 14% migrant families. 

38% female migrant households had income from other members of the family but only 21% male migrant family had more earners in their families. 

Recommendations

The study recommended extending cash grant support to the families left behind. 

It also recommended to incorporate migrant families affected by Covid-19 in public assistance schemes, and counseling households on mental and financial stress. 

The study also recommended to take measure to prevent women from violence and ensure exemplary punishment to the perpetrators. 

Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Imran Ahmed was the chief guest at the program. 

The program was presided by Kamal Uddin Ahmed, member of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and moderated By Prof CR Abrar, chair of BCSM. 

The minister said this research finding will help them to take relevant action in the near future. 

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