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Greek government announces labour market support for refugees

The Greek Ministry of Labour, Social Insurance and Social Solidarity recently announced upcoming actions for the protection of rights of refugees, immigrants, and unaccompanied minors. The actions focus on issues related to labour market integration and protection of labour rights.

The Ministry of Labour will, for the first time, implement a programme of vocational training, certification of skills, and job search for 3,000 unemployed refugees in high-demand sectors in the regions of Attica and Central Macedonia. The aim of the programme is to help refugees acquire technical skills that they can use to integrate into the labour market.

Additionally, the Labour Inspectorate is part of the National Plan for Combatting Trafficking in Human Beings 2018-2023, which will implement actions that concern education, the legislative framework, and participation in awareness-raising actions, in addition to strengthening audit work in the field. The Inspectorate will also move forward on the ratification of the International Labour Organization Convention 129 on labour inspection in the agricultural sector.

Previously, the Manpower Employment Organisation in Greece (OAED) modified the conditions to register as unemployed. This facilitated entry in OAED’s registers by migrants and refugees who hold residence permits but are unable to register a permanent address or who are staying in temporary accommodation facilities.

Besides work in the area of labour market integration, the Ministry of Labour has also been active on the protection of unaccompanied minors. Law No. 4554 of 18 July 2018 placed unaccompanied minors under the protection of the Greek state, and they are now assigned professional guardians. The Ministry has also renovated buildings with a total capacity of 800 people for the accommodation of unaccompanied minors and refugee families. This was done in cooperation with the Ministry of National Defence.

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