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A study released by Folha de São Paulo on 6 August revealed that thousands of cities across Brazil are economically dependent on the social programs created by the Government. According to the research, the number of families benefiting from Auxílio Brasil exceeds the number of employees with a formal contract in half of the country’s cities.
The survey was carried out with data from the Citizenship Ministry and the Special Secretariat for Labor. The data collected showed that, of 5,426 cities analyzed, 2,728 are in this situation (50.3%). The data refer to the month of June.
Dependence on Government Assistance
According to experts, despite the unemployment rate having declined in the first half of the year, the fall in the average worker’s income and the lack of formal employment opportunities contribute to keeping many families dependent on government assistance.
The phenomenon, however, is much more frequent in small towns. According to experts, most small cities are highly dependent on the public sector, both in the generation of jobs and in the transfer of resources, either through social programs or transfers from the Union and the states for the composition of their revenues.
Among the 326 cities with 100,000 inhabitants or more, only 48 have fewer CLT workers than beneficiary families (14.7%). Nova Iguaçu (RJ), in Baixada Fluminense, is Among the 48 exceptions. The city of 825,000 inhabitants ended the first semester with 83,200 thousand hired under the CLT regime and 114,400 families benefiting from Auxílio Brasil. Another case is Belford Roxo (RJ), where there are three families served by the income transfer program (67.6 thousand) for each inhabitant formally employed (21.2 thousand).
City Human Development Index (IDHM)
At the same time, the survey reinforces that the situation is more common among cities with lower IDHM (City Human Development Index). The number of employees is lower than that of beneficiary families in 99.7% of the cities with the index considered low — less than 0.550. While, among the cities with the index considered very high —above 0.8—, there are none in which the number of formal workers is lower than the number of beneficiary families.
Regions of Brazil
The analysis shows that 94% of the municipalities in the Northeast region have more beneficiaries than employees. In the North, they are 82.3%. These percentages are much lower in the South (12.9%), Central-West (28.7%) and Southeast (30.9%) regions.