Massive emigration reveals the standard of living in Cuba
Massive emigration reveals the standard of living in Cuba / Hablemos
Press, Eduardo Herrera
Posted on June 4, 2015
Hablemos Press, Eduardo Herrera, 4 May 2015 — In Cuba, the constant
emigration of its citizens can reveal what is the standard of living on
the Island. Many of those who do not know the reality of life in Cuba
should consider this fact and arrive at their own conclusions.
Cubans are willing to go live in countries supposedly poorer and with
worse living conditions.
Starting in 2013, a new horizon appeared for those who wanted to
emigrate: the requirement for the so-called “white card”—an exit permit
for Cubans seeking to travel—was eliminated.
Even so, there are still obstacles to leaving the Island. These consist
of the high prices that Cuban citizens must pay to acquire any type of
documentation. Included in this is the passport, which costs about 100
dollars, while the average Cuban’s salary is 20 dollars per month.
Limiters also include the restrictions that other countries impose on
Cubans arriving in their territories. Despite all this, Cubans find a
way to emigrate, no matter what.
A well-known is example is that of the so-called “balseros” [rafters],
who risk their lives. Sailing in rickety vessels, they try to cross the
Florida Straits and reach the coasts of the United States.
Not counting those who have left the Island to settle in countries such
as Ecuador, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Angola and other. The exit strategy
they most often use is an employment contract, or marriage—often arranged.
It is a great mistake when many countries recognize Cuba as providing
its citizens a good standard of living. If this is so, why would so many
people want to emigrate?
Many of those who leave are hopeless young people in search of a better
future for themselves and their families. Those who stay behind are
older—one reason that the population is aging and life expectancy
appears to be high.
Thus, public opinion confuses the increase in longevity with a higher
life expectancy (seen as an indicator of economic development and a
measurement of health), but it is not based on reality.
Additionally, public opinion can become confused when discussing free
health care and education for the entire population, without taking into
considering the poor conditions of both sectors.
These and other reasons are what explain why Cubans emigrate
desperately. Although many leaders and personalities may want to
recognize that Cuba is doing well or is changing, we could tell them, as
we say here, “There is none so blind as he who will not see.”
Translated by: Alicia Barraqué Ellison
Source: Massive emigration reveals the standard of living in Cuba /
Hablemos Press, Eduardo Herrera | Translating Cuba –