Municipal support available for foreign nationals in Latvia during COVID-19 emergency
The Parliament of Latvia issued a law on 3 April 2020 detailing the operation of state institutions during the emergency caused by COVID-19. The law stipulates that municipalities may grant social services and assistance to target groups not specified in the Law on Social Services and Social Assistance. That means that all foreign nationals with a valid residence permit may apply for such assistance.
The Welfare Department of the Riga City Council has announced that any foreign students living in Riga are eligible to apply for a 128 EUR subsidy if they encounter material hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Claimants must submit a document outlining the conditions for the unexpected difficulties, along with proof of residence, enrolment in a higher education institution and bank account statement. The grant is intended to cover basic needs.
Information about the availability of assistance was disseminated through social networks and has been facilitated by Make Room, an NGO facilitating the inclusion of foreign students.