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Over 90% of Donbas civilians do not want to leave their homes – sociologists


The absolute majority of people, living on the territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, are not planning to leave.  They are also joined by 12% of IDPs, who came back home.  This research data of Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) were announced during the presentation of the updated Humanitarian map of Donbas needs

The number of displaced persons almost hasn't changed since March. Of the 2.9 mln residents of 27 Donbas towns, about 850,000 people moved out (29%). This was stated by Volodymyr Paniotto, the General Director of KIIS, during the roundtable meeting "A year since the conflict started. Humanitarian map of Donbas civilians' needs", initiated by Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center and "Dopomozhemo TV".

"93% don't want to leave their place of residence. 4% would like to leave, but can't do it, and only 1% is planning to move out. In the course of time, a smaller percentage of reached respondents state their willingness to leave their hometowns. The number of those who are not willing to leave vs December has increased by 9%", – Maryna Shpiker, a research scientist at KIIS, shares.

The Humanitarian map researches show that with the course of time less and less respondents are planning their departure. And those, who would like to leave, have a worse understanding of where exactly they want to go.

"Those, who are willing to leave (in June vs March) have less determined plans on the direction of their departure – 34% don't know where they are going to migrate. Those, who know, mostly prefer Ukraine (28%) or another town within Donbas (9%). 19% would move to Russia", – Shpiker noted.

In June poll they studied for the first time the migration peculiarities of those, who moved out, but came back to their home settlement. Of all respondents 12% left their towns themselves or their family members did it.  The responses of these 12% show that their departure mostly had a short-term nature: 79% were leaving for a period up to 3 months. Older people were mostly planning to leave for a short while and wait for active hostilities to stop, younger people were leaving for a long period.

"The main reasons to come back: active military actions stopped (31%), lack of money to pay the rental (27%) and fear for property left back home (24%), – Daryna Pyrogova, a research scientist at KIIS, said. – In addition, displaced people have encountered difficulties when applying for a new job, experienced discrimination by employers, unmotivated fines and reduction of wages, which has lowered their standard of living in a new place".

It is remarkable that people come back, despite the escalation of the military conflict in Donbas and serious difficulties in everyday life. Here are the main problems that were named after their return home: lack of vacancies and high competition, delays in payment at the operating enterprises, high prices for food and medications, the need to save on every purchase, permit system with Ukraine.

"How can charitable volunteer organizations and the state help in this situation? Those IDPs who came back home say that they would be happy to get a one-time material aid and provision with construction materials to restore their houses. Consultations and assistance with permits arrangement are also relevant, – Daryna Pyrogova assures.

Humanitarian map of Donbas civilian' needs was developed by order of Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center and Dopomozhemo TV.  The map is based on KIIS sociological research, conducted during June 2-14, 2015. They polled 2,101 respondents.