Ukrainian Refugees To Be Granted Longer Stay In The Czech Republic

The changes took the form of an amendment to the law known as “lex Ukraine”. Photo credit:Coline Béguet.

Prague, Dec 14 (CTK) – Refugees from Ukraine may be able to extend their temporary protection in the Czech Republic by one year until late March 2024, under legislation passed by the Chamber of Deputies yesterday.

In keeping with European rules, this was approved as an amendment to the law known as “lex Ukraine” in the state of legislative emergency.

The motion was approved by deputies from the governing coalition, while lawmakers from the opposition ANO and Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD) abstained. The bill will now be reviewed by the Senate.

Temporary protection provides displaced people with access to public health insurance, education and the labour market. By extending this protection, the authorities will be able to obtain accurate data on the number of the refugees in the Czech Republic.

If the Ukrainians want to extend their temporary protection visas, they must register by the end of March. After that, they will be given a date for their visit to an Interior Ministry centre where they will receive their “visa sign”.

“If they are not registered by the given deadline and do not come to be given the visa sign by late September 2023, the temporary protection will end,” said the report on the legislation.

The law will also enable a simplified procedure for the extension of temporary protection if there is another wave of refugees from Ukraine and Interior Ministry centres are overwhelmed by new visa applicants.

The government may decide by decree that electronic registration alone will be sufficient for the extension of temporary protection, and personal visits would then not be necessary.

The amendment includes a simplification of the process to become qualified in psychology, because along with the arrival of the people affected by the war, there is a growing demand for such services.

There will also be changes in the rules for the enrollment of Ukrainian children into pre-school education and compulsory school attendance for the upcoming school year.

According to earlier information, the government is also drafting another amendment to the “lex Ukraine” that will transfer the Regional Assistance Centres for helping Ukrainian refugees from regional authorities to the Interior Ministry by April.

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