Rio de Janeiro vetoes fee exemption for validating diplomas of refugees
The Governor of Rio de Janeiro, Luiz Fernando Pezão, has vetoed Bill 2080/2016 that exempts refugees residing in the state from paying fees to validate their foreign graduate, masters or doctoral diplomas.
A revalidação é uma demanda antiga dos refugiados que vivem no Brasil, pois isso facilitaria a recolocação profissional dentro de suas áreas de conhecimento. (Foto: Flickr)
The Governor of Rio de Janeiro, Luiz Fernando Pezão, has vetoed Bill 2080/2016 that exempts refugees residing in the state from paying fees to validate their foreign graduate, masters or doctoral diplomas. Cáritas Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro, Conectas, Compassiva, IMDH (Migrations and Human Rights Institute) and the Igarapé Institute signed a joint letter calling on the state legislature to overturn the veto.
Governor Pezão’s decision conflicts with the actions of other states, such as São Paulo, which approved the fee exemption last month. The exemption is a long-time demand of refugees living in Brazil, since it helps them work in their field of expertise, thereby contributing to the dynamism and diversity of the Brazilian labor market.
“Rio de Janeiro had been expected to accept this demand of refugees, since the state is one of the main destinations for people seeking protection in Brazil. Unfortunately, the government vetoed the bill, going against one of the principles of the New Immigration Law that recognizes the importance of academic and professional credentials for the inclusion of refugees in Brazilian society,” said Camila Asano, coordinator of programs at Conectas.
In the letter, the organizations argued that the validation of diplomas is a way of ensuring that “integration is effective, complete and lasting” as it allows refugees to enter the job market in positions that guarantee their autonomy and dignity. The signatories also maintained that the measure will help improve the reception of refugees, “consolidating the effective exercise of their rights and renewing the value of the principles of freedom, democracy and justice”.