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World: OECD booklet and local practices on refugee integration

The OECD recently published a policy-oriented booklet reviewing OECD countries' experiences with the integration of refugees and humanitarian migrants. This booklet presents the following 10 lessons and examples of good practice from OECD countries, complemented by comparisons of the policy frameworks for the integration of humanitarian migrants in OECD countries:

  1. Provide activation and integration services as soon as possible for humanitarian migrants and asylum seekers with high prospects of being allowed to stay
  2. Factor employment prospects into dispersal policies
  3. Take into account the growing diversity of humanitarian migrants and develop tailor-made approaches
  4. Develop support programmes specific to unaccompanied minors who arrive past the age of compulsory schooling
  5. Promote equal access to integration services to humanitarian migrants across the country
  6. Facilitate labour market access for asylum seekers with high prospects of being allowed to stay
  7. Record and assess humanitarian migrants’ foreign qualifications, work experience and skills
  8. Identify mental and physical health issues early and provide adequate support
  9. Build on civil society to integrate humanitarian migrants
  10. Acknowledge that the integration of very poorly educated humanitarian migrants requires long-term training and support

The booklet entitled Refugees and others in need of protection is the first volume of the OECD series Making Integration Work, developed with support from Germany, Norway, Sweden, and the King Baudouin Foundation in Belgium. This publication was launched at a joint high-level conference with UNHCR on "integration of beneficiaries of international protection" and can be read for free online here.

The OECD LEED Programme also launched a (still open)  “Call for Initiatives” in 2015 to extract what local authorities and other actors know works, what the new scenario is demanding and how equipped they are to respond. The call for initiatives gathered numerous individual initiatives from across Europe, including those originating from networks and international organisations such as EUROCITIES and WAPES, and from targeted interviews LEED conducted. The programme's website presented a selection of inspiring practices which illustrates the potential for actions of local organisations. These initiatives are embedded in a specific context which influenced their outcomes and required finding ad-hoc solutions to the legal and political framework, the intensity and diversity of population inflow and specific needs, as well as local socio economic situation. Read summary

The OECD LEED programme intends to collect more practices, select the most inspiring ones and disseminate them through the OECD webpage and follow-up publications.

Note that a more up-to-date and in-depth review of refugee integration policies and practices in the EU will be conducted by the European Migration Network. Click here for questionnaire