The outflow of Venezuelan refugees and migrants remains one of the largest displacement crises in the world. To date, over 6.1 million have left their homes, of which 5 million are in the Americas. There are 199,206 Venezuelans recognised as refugees worldwide and 971,170 pending asylum claims. Over 2.7 million regular stay permits have been granted to Venezuelans since 2014. In support to receiving States, UNHCR improves reception conditions, advocates for legal stay and inclusion, mitigate protection risks and boost access to basic services.
The socio-economic crisis triggered by the pandemic has taken a heavy toll on Venezuelan refugees and migrants. Many have lost all sources of income, exposing them to destitution, homelessness, exploitation, and abuse.
UNHCR’s priorities in 2022 focus on support for basic needs, especially in border areas where needs often outstrip the capacities to respond in promoting the inclusion of Venezuelans into national social protection systems and local labour markets, and supporting government plans for long-term solutions, including asylum, regularization schemes and other means of facilitating legal stay. In Colombia, 1,000,000 Venezuelans were registered with biometric data to access the 10-year Temporary Protection Status.
The Inter-Agency Coordination Platform (R4V) and the State-led Quito Process remain key regional mechanisms for harmonizing policies and practices, scaling up and coordinating the humanitarian response and improving access to basic rights. In Venezuela, UNHCR operates within an interagency framework to assist the most vulnerable population groups inside the country, including recent returnees.