Some 300,000 Hungarians live in segregated poverty areas – paper

Budapest, November 6 (MTI) – An estimated 300,000 Hungarians are believed to live in segregated high density poverty areas around the country, a sociology researcher told daily Nepszabadsag on Saturday.

Vera Domokos, project manager at the National Development Agency’s Office for Small Region Development, said a European Union-funded study had amassed data on segregated housing early this year, to find that about 1,633 such zones existed in Hungary.

    The study defined “segregated area” as a place where more than 50 percent of residents aged 15-59 were without regular income and received state benefits regularly, more than 50 percent of this age group had no education beyond primary school and the majority of homes were not privately owned. The size of such areas ranged from a single block of flats to quarters inhabited by more than 1,000 people, Domokos told the paper. In Hungary the segregated zones are not officially classified as ghettos or Roma settlements, she said.

    Although data analysis is not yet completed, it is already apparent that segregation and a high concentration of disadvantaged children go hand in hand, Domokos added.

    The study’s findings have been passed onto the Ministry of Public Administration and Justice, she said.