28 May 2020 / 131

EU Highlights

"Key workers" are those who help to keep basic services running, and their work is essential during this pandemic. In some key occupations, immigrants comprise up to one-third of the workforce. The European Commission’s Knowledge for Policy series highlights the contribution of immigrant key workers to Europe’s COVID-19 response.

We are continuing to gather examples of resources and initiatives—big and small—related to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on migrant communities across Europe. See the latest updates here

Upcoming Events

Stockholm - Swedish Integration Forum: Labour Market and Diversity

30/09/2020 09:25
(Bonnier Conference Center, Torsgatan 21, Stockholm, Sweden)
The Integration Forum in Sweden hosts a number of national conferences on different topics related to integration. This event focuses on labour market policy, the reform of the Swedish Public Employment Service and the integration of foreign-born and newly arrived immigrants on the Swedish…
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Stockholm - Swedish Integration Forum: Multicultural Neighborhoods

16/09/2020 09:15
(Bonnier Conference Center, Torsgatan 21, Stockholm, Sweden)
The Integration Forum in Sweden hosts a number of national conferences on different topics related to integration. This conference focuses on multicultural neighbourhoods. Among the lecturers are Susanne Urban,  Senior Lecturer and Associate Professor  at the  Institute for…
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Latest News

Surveys map out Czech public’s views on foreign nationals

In March 2020, the Public Opinion Research Centre carried out several polls investigating attitudes among Czechs towards foreigners and ethnic groups living in the Czech Republic. The questions investigated general attitudes towards foreigners, their integration, settling in the country as well as the public’s view of various ethnic groups and tolerance.

Regarding general attitudes toward foreigners, the number of Czechs who consider foreigners to be a problem is decreasing compared to 2018 responses, both on national (53% of respondents) and local levels (24%). Respondents were also asked about the impact of foreigners on Czech culture, unemployment, health risks and economy as well as whether foreigners are the solution to the ageing population in the country.

Concerning integration and foreigners who live in the country for the long term or permanently, a majority (73%) stated that foreigners should conform to Czech cultural habits as much as possible, while 24% said that foreigners should adapt to Czech cultural habits in some aspects, and 2% said that foreigners should be allowed to live according to their habits. 24% respondents stated they would not like to have a foreigner as a neighbour. The survey shows that Czechs have the least tolerant views toward Muslims.

The polls also examined opinions on whether there are too many, the right amount or too few foreigners living in the country; whether foreigners should have the right of long-term residence and whether the state should allow them to settle permanently. Respondents were also asked about the reasons that underlie their attitudes towards immigrants and regarding adaptation to Czech customs.

Additionally, the polls surveyed attitudes of the Czech public toward fourteen ethnic groups that live in the Czech Republic in significant numbers. The most positive attitudes were toward Czechs, Slovaks and Poles, while the worst were toward Roma and Arab people.

See the poll results:

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Working group proposes changes to Portuguese nationality law

Draft amendments to the Portuguese nationality law are under debate in the parliament. Constança Urbano de Sousa, coordinator of the working group on this issue and former Minister of Internal Affairs, explained that the proposal allows children born in national territory to legal migrants who have a residence permit or who have taken up residence for at least one year to become Portuguese citizens.

Under the current law, in effect since 1981 and amended in 2018, the required residence period is two years. The government hopes to reduce it to one year. Urbano de Sousa explains that the one-year period is used by the United Nations and the European Union to distinguish immigration from other movements of people, like tourism or business travel.

The working group also reached a consensus to expand access to naturalisation to people born in Portugal after 25 April 1974 (change of the political regime from dictatorship to democracy and end of the colonial war) and before the entry into force of the nationality law in 1981, to address a gap in access to naturalisation due to historical reasons.

Voting on the amendment will take place at an as-yet unscheduled meeting of the Constitutional Affairs, Rights, Freedoms and Guarantees committee. It is therefore not possible to foresee when the legislative changes might come into effect.

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Integration Practices Recently Uploaded

AVAIL – Amplifying the voices of asylum seekers and refugees for integration and life skills

AVAIL was a two-year project that built on the experiences of refugees and asylum seekers to increase their participation and representation in their new local communities. The name AVAIL stands for ‘Amplifying the voices of asylum seekers and refugees for integration and life…
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Latest Funding Information

Call for proposals – Sport as a tool for integration and social inclusion of refugees (2020 edition)

The potential of sport as a tool for social inclusion has been well documented. Sport projects contribute to the social inclusion of refugees in host communities, and the opportunities such projects provide are increasingly welcomed in EU Member States. This preparatory action is a contribution to this effort and to a better integration of refugees through sport.

Through concrete actions aiming at integrating refugees through sport, the expected outcomes of this preparatory action will include:

  • Promoting the direct engagement of refugees and host communities
  • Promoting a Europe-wide approach, increasing the potential for host communities to successfully engage and integrate refugees through sport

Expected project outputs:

  • Organise sport activities for refugees
  • Promote the practice of sport and physical activity by refugees
  • Promote the cooperation of refugees and host communities in the organisation of sport activities

The total budget earmarked for the co-financing of projects under this call for proposals is estimated at 1,650,000 EUR. The EU grant is limited to a maximum co-financing rate of 80% of eligible costs. Grants will range from a minimum of 200,000 EUR to a maximum of 300,000 EUR per project, and the European Commission expects to fund approximately 6 proposals (i.e. to sign 6 grants of 275,000 EUR in average).

The deadline to submit applications is 1 June 2020 at 12:00 (noon) Brussels time.

For all information about requirements and applications, please visit the website of the call for proposals

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Grassroots and Parent Activism in Education – OSF Call for Applications (Hungary)

Open Society Foundations has opened the Grassroots and Parent Activism in Education grant for applications. This call is directed at Hungarian civil society organisations and informal groups working to improve educational opportunities for marginalised children.

The call will support grassroots initiatives addressing education challenges and their impacts, during and after the COVID-19 pandemic, with focus on strengthening community-level participation and engaging parents.

Project activities must be implemented in Hungary. Grants will be up to 20,000 USD for 12 months. The deadline to apply is 25 June 2020 (17:00 CET).

All information about applications and requirements can be found on the OSF website.

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Czech Republic – AMIF call to support establishment of call centre on residence permits and provision of Czech language courses

The Czech Ministry of the Interior has announced the 27th call for proposals under its National Programme of the EU’s Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF). Qualified applicants for this call are public administration bodies. The deadline to apply for funding is 30 June 2020. The maximum duration of each project is 30 months.

The Ministry is accepting proposals that fit one of two specific, pre-defined measures:

  1. Support and provision of Czech language courses to third-country nationals and international protection holders at integration centres operated by the Refugee Facilities Administration of the Ministry of the Interior. Supported activities will include Czech language instruction, production of related methodologies and supervision. The total amount allocated for this measure is 24,000,000 Kč (about 875,600 EUR).
  2. Establishment of a national client call centre to provide information on residence permit issues to third-country nationals and international protection holders. Supported activities will include establishment of the client call centre, provision of information to the target group, production of analysis and statistics on operation of the centre. The total amount allocated for this measure is 56,000,000 Kč (about 2,043,050 EUR).

All information about the application and requirements can be found on the Ministry’s website.

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Bulgaria – Funding opportunity for communities affected by COVID-19

The Community Board of TELUS International in Bulgaria has opened a call for proposals for projects aimed at overcoming the consequences of COVID-19. Non-profit organisations can apply for up to EUR 7,500. The fund will distribute a total of EUR 85,000 in 2020.

The projects should be:

  • focused on a significant number of people or groups affected by the crisis caused by COVID-19
  • realistic in terms of the legal, technological and scientific aspects of the solutions proposed, so that it is possible to start by 1 October 2020
  • relate to one of the following topics: healthcare, education or the environment

TELUS’s Corporate Social Responsibility team will offer an online workshop to support potential applicants and provide them with more details about the call. The online workshop is planned for 20 May at 14:00 Bulgarian time. Registration for the workshop will be open by 18 May 2020 (registration link).

The deadline for applications is 1 June 2020. All information about the application and the requirements can be found on the official website of TELUS.

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Bulgaria – AMIF funding for integration

The International Projects Directorate of the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior has opened a call for proposals under the national programme of the EU’s Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (2014-2020). The call will support measures to implement the EU Action Plan on integration and return of third-country nationals, information campaigns to raise public awareness and establishment of a monitoring system for forced return.

The call will support 4 types of activities:

  • Measures to support implementation of the EU Action Plan for the integration of third-country nationals

This will support measures implemented by civil society organisations and central, regional and local authorities in the context of comprehensive integration strategies. Such measures would promote an integrated approach to the integration of third-country nationals, including by strengthening cooperation between relevant actors.

  • Information campaigns to raise public awareness

This includes the organisation of conferences, trainings and seminars, dissemination of informational materials and other activities in third countries with which Bulgaria has concluded bilateral agreements on labour migration.

  • Measures to support the implementation of the EU Action Plan on the return of third-country nationals

This is aimed at enhancing the effectiveness of the EU system for the return of migrants as established and implemented through innovative cooperation with other member states.

  • Establishment of a system for monitoring forced return


The deadline to apply is 12 June 2020. All information about requirements and applications can be found on the website of the Information System for Management and Monitoring of EU Funds in Bulgaria 2020 (link).

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Latest Documents

Integration of migrants in middle and small cities and in rural areas in Europe

As part of its Cities and Regions for Integration  initiative, the EU Committee of the Regions (CoR) published the study 'Integration of migrants in middle and small cities and in rural areas in Europe' which explores the context and structures through which cities have increasingly found…
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Keeping It Local 2 – Local migrant integration strategies (Ireland)

This document published by the Immigrant Council of Ireland is a follow-up to a 2018 discussion document entitled Keeping It Local, which proposed actions for local authorities to develop local migrant integration strategies. The follow-up research examines progress in developing integration…
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Getting integrated in the city – A comprehensive picture of residents with a foreign background in Helsinki in 2020

This report provides a comprehensive profile of Helsinki residents with a foreign background in 2020, with a focus on their integration. The report views integration as ‘finding your place and participating in society and your local community, feeling included and having a sense of…
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