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Third Master Plan for Settlement Support for North Korean Defectors (2021-2023)

writer
고민석
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2021-05-18
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6285

  Third Master Plan for Settlement Support for North Korean Defectors (2021-2023)


May 18, 2021

The Government held a meeting of the Consultative Council on North Korean Defectors and deliberated upon and resolved the Third Master Plan for Settlement Support for North Korean Defectors (2021-2023) and the 2021 Implementation Plan for Settlement Support for North Korean Defectors.

After taking office, the Moon Jae-in Government adopted the “daily-life oriented support program for North Korean defectors” as a policy task and incorporated it into the Second Master Plan (2018-2020). As a result, new indexes on daily life of North Korean defectors settling in South Korean society are being created.

The average monthly wage of North Korean defectors increased from KRW 1.787 million in 2017 to KRW 2.161 million in 2020. The average months of continuous service rose from 25.2 to 31.6 months during the same period, and the economic activity indexes of North Korean defectors are on the rise as well.

    * Although some indexes deteriorated due to COVID-19 in 2020, the indexes as a whole have improved. (Change in unemployment rate (7.0%→6.9%→6.3%→9.4%) and in employment rate (56.9%→60%→58.2%→54.4%) from 2017 to 2020).
 
The subjective life satisfaction of North Korean defectors increased from 73.6% to 76.4% during the same period. As such, objective and subjective settlement indexes are improving.

    * Source: Survey of Settlement Support for North Korean Defectors (2017-2020, Korea Hana Foundation).
 
Based on these findings, the Third Master Plan sets forth 24 policy tasks for six objectives that central administrative agencies and local governments will pursue together over the next three years.

 

 * Six objectives: ① Creating an inclusive social environment that embraces North Korean defectors, ② Reinforcing the protection and support system for North Korean defectors, ③ Increasing support services for the daily life of the vulnerable groups, ④ Offering personalized job matches so that North Korean defectors become more self-reliant and self-supporting, ⑤ Helping youth defectors receive proper education and North Korean defectors form healthy families, and ⑥ Improving the facilities and staffing for settlement support.

 
The Third Master Plan was formulated after gathering extensive opinions from North Korean defectors, officials from appropriate agencies, academics, and experts through on-site visits, meetings, and consultations since last year.
 
The Third Master Plan sets forth a goal of “realizing a welcoming society in which North Korean defectors become neighbors” and the basic direction of pursuing settlement support with a focus on social integration by increasing emotional and psychological support as well as financial assistance.
 
The Government carries on the direction of the Second Master Plan which expanded services for daily life and emphasized the protection of the vulnerable groups.
 
It also provides psychological and emotional support for North Korean defectors; encourages the participation and cooperation of government agencies and local administrative bodies; and focuses on expanding customized services in consideration of the demands from North Korean defectors for comprehensive support.
 
The Government will work closely with appropriate agencies for the smooth implementation of the Third Master Plan, and further efforts to help North Korean defectors settle in our society as true neighbors.