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See how regions are responding to migrant integration needs

See how regions are responding to migrant integration needs

24/04/2019

The Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR) has rolled out a new tool to visualise the actions and competences of regional authorities regarding migration, asylum and integration. Currently launched as a beta version, the tool is based on a survey of CPMR’s members and will be updated continuously.

The tool allows users to see what regions across Europe are doing for the reception, integration and social inclusion of migrants and refugees. Regions can also use the tool to show their interest in cooperating on migration topics with other regions or through international frameworks.

The CPMR is a network of 160 regions from the EU and beyond that seeks to ensure the needs and interests of its member regions in policymaking. The network is also a partner in the European Committee of the Region’s new Cities and Regions for Integration initiative.  

See the Migration Visual Mapping

AMIF funding available for integration training in Portugal

AMIF funding available for integration training in Portugal

23/04/2019

The Portuguese High Commission for Migration is accepting funding applications for initiatives to train public and private sector employees who have an active role in the hosting and integration of third-country nationals. This funding opportunity is available through the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund.

Eligible actions for funding

  • Actions to train strategic target groups in the hosting and integration of third-country nationals
  • Actions to train strategic target groups in preventing and combatting discrimination based on racial or ethnic origin, colour, nationality, ancestry and/or country of origin, as well as the intersection of these characteristics with gender, sexual orientation, gender expression, sexual characteristics, age and/or disability
  • Production of materials and technical-pedagogical resources to provide support to professionals, volunteers and institutions

The total amount available under this call is € 523,641. For each approved project, the maximum co-financing rate is 75% of the total eligible cost, and applications must request a total eligible investment of at least € 70,000. Projects cannot have an execution period of more than 36 months.

Applications must be submitted by 23 May 2019 at 17:00. See the application requirements

Call for Papers – Neuchâtel Graduate Conference of Migration and Mobility Studies 2019

Call for Papers – Neuchâtel Graduate Conference of Migration and Mobility Studies 2019

19/04/2019

The third edition of the Neuchâtel Graduate Conference will take place on 12 to 13 September 2019 at the University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. This year’s conference topic is Innovative Approaches to Migration and Mobility Studies. The organisers are currently accepting submissions for papers and panels.

Submissions are welcome from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, including anthropology, demography, economics, geography, law, political science, psychology and sociology. Panels held during the previous edition of the conference included topics such as migration and the labour market, migration and political participation, naturalisation policies and EU migration.

There is no participation fee. In order to encourage participation, the National Center of Competence in Research (nccr – on the move) will provide funding up to CHF 400. This support is intended for international graduate students travelling large distances or without mobility funding.

The deadline for submissions is 5 May 2019. Find out more

Integrationsministerkonferenz fordert Beibehaltung der Flüchtlingsfinanzierung und Reform der Sprachförderung

Integrationsministerkonferenz fordert Beibehaltung der Flüchtlingsfinanzierung und Reform der Sprachförderung

15/04/2019

Im Rahmen der 14. Integrationsministerkonferenz in Berlin kamen die Minister und Senatoren der Bundesländer vom 11. bis 12. April zusammen, um unter dem diesjährigen Motto „Ankommen.Teilhaben.Bleiben.“ über Zukunftsfragen der Integration zu sprechen.

Ein wichtiges Thema bildete die Flüchtlingsfinanzierung. Alle Länder fordern, dass sich der Bund auch nach 2019 an der Finanzierung von Unterbringung, Betreuung und Integration von Geflüchteten ohne Absenkungen beteiligt. Elke Breitenbach, die Vorsitzende der Integrationsministerkonferenz und Berliner Integrationssenatorin, betonte, dass sich der Bund hier nicht aus seiner Verantwortung stehlen dürfe. Unter allen Ländern besteht Einigkeit darin, dass die Integrationsarbeit der Länder und Kommunen auch weiterhin die Unterstützung des Bundes braucht.

Zudem fordert die Integrationsministerkonferenz eine Neustrukturierung der Sprachförderung für Migranten, um die Qualität der Kurse zu verbessern. Die Kurse sollen in Zukunft besser aufeinander abgestimmt sowie modular aufgebaut sein. Auch sollen sie besser als bisher bildungsfernere Migranten berücksichtigen. Die Länder wollen auch die berufsbezogenen Sprachkurse für die Migranten öffnen, die arbeiten und ihre Kurse selbst bezahlen können.

Derzeit gibt es deutliche qualitative Mängel in Bezug auf den Erfolg der Sprachkurse, weshalb die Länder nun die Neustrukturierung forden: Aktuell bestehen nur circa 50 % der Prüfungsteilnehmenden ihre B1 Kurse, bei A2 sind es sogar nur 40 %. Während man mit einem Sprachniveau A2 grundlegende Aufgaben im Alltag wahrnehmen kann, wird B1 oftmals als Voraussetzung zur gesellschaftlichen Integration und der Arbeit gesehen.

Die Integrationskonferenz will insgesamt die interkulturelle Öffnung weiter voranbringen und sich für gleichberechtigte Entwicklungs- und Aufstiegschancen für Menschen mit Migrationshintergrund einsetzen. Mehr erfahren

Experten protestieren gegen Pläne der Bundesregierung für dauerhafte Wohnsitzauflage für Geflüchtete

Experten protestieren gegen Pläne der Bundesregierung für dauerhafte Wohnsitzauflage für Geflüchtete

12/04/2019

Der Sachverständigenrat deutscher Stiftungen für Integration und Migration (SVR) kritisiert den Plan der Bundesregierung, die Wohnsitzauflage für Flüchtlinge zur Dauerregel zu etablieren. Die Auflage könne laut den Experten zwar dazu beitragen, die Rahmenbedingungen für Integration zu verbessern, stellt jedoch eine erhebliche Einschränkung der Freizügigkeit international Schutzberechtigter dar, erklärte der SVR in Berlin.

Die Wohnsitzauflage entstand vor dem Hintergrund, dass im Herbst 2015 innerhalb kurzer Zeit besonders viele Flüchtlinge nach Deutschland migriert sind. Nach Anerkennung als Schutzberechtigte konnten diese damals ihren Wohnort frei wählen. Bei Bund, Ländern und Kommunen wuchsen die Bedenken, dass die Geflüchteten vor allem in die Großstädte und die Ballungszentren Deutschlands ziehen würden und dadurch der Integrationsprozess beeinträchtigt würde.

Aufgrund dessen führte die Bundesregierung mit dem Integrationsgesetz ab dem 6. August 2016 eine auf drei Jahre befristete Wohnsitzregelung (§ 12a AufenthG) ein. Die Auflage zwingt Flüchtlinge dazu, sich in einem bestimmten Bundesland, Kreis oder einer Stadt niederzulassen, und wurde zunächst auf drei Jahre befristet. Im August 2019 würde sie auslaufen. Die Bundesregierung will die Regelung aber entfristen. Die Residenzpflicht für Flüchtlinge war nach jahrelanger Kritik von Organisationen im Jahr 2014 zunächst abgeschafft worden.

Die Wissenschaftler des SVR stoßen sich daran, dass vor der von der Bundesregierung geplanten Entfristung der Wohnsitzpflicht keine Evaluierung der Maßnahme vorliegt, was im Koalitionsvertrag jedoch versprochen wurde. „Planbarkeit der Integrationsangebote und Vermeidung von Segregation sind wichtige Ziele. Allerdings ist zugleich die integrationsförderliche Wirkung der Maßnahme zentral für ihre Begründung. Daher ließe sich allenfalls darüber nachdenken, die am 6. August 2019 außer Kraft tretende Wohnsitzregelung um weitere zwei Jahre zu verlängern“, so der SVR-Vorsitzende Prof. Dr. Thomas Bauer. Bauer schlägt daher vor, eine Entfristung an eine Evaluation zu koppeln, in die neben den Verwaltungen auch soziale und Bildungsträger eingebunden werden sollten.

Bauer gibt außerdem zu Bedenken, dass sich studieninteressierte Flüchtlinge durch Wohnsitzauflagen mitunter Hürden ausgesetzt sehen, etwa wenn sie Beratungsangebote durch die Hochschulen wahrnehmen oder an Studienvorbereitungskursen teilnehmen wollen.

Read more

Czech interior ministry opens AMIF call to support integration measures

Czech interior ministry opens AMIF call to support integration measures

10/04/2019

The Czech Ministry of the Interior has announced the 22nd call for proposals under its National Programme of the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF). Qualified applicants for this call are NGOs, public administration bodies and intergovernmental organisations. The deadline to apply for funding is 21 May 2019.

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

Measure 1 – Informing the general public on integration of foreigners

Supported activities include the production of audiovisual materials, organisation of public events, production of publications, organisation of educational programmes (especially with a focus on pedagogues and children). The total amount allocated for this measure is 22,500,000 Kč (about 882,000 EUR).

Measure 2 – Providing legal and social counselling to international protection applicants

Supported activities include the provision of social and legal counselling, psychological support, communication with public authorities, language support and raising awareness of voluntary return. The total amount allocated for this measure is 18,000,000 Kč (about 706,000 EUR).

Measure 3 – Supporting unaccompanied minors

Supported activities include social and legal assistance, educational and socio-cultural activities, leisure activities, professional psychological and pedagogical support and individual and/or group remedial education. The total amount allocated for this measure is 2,625,000 Kč (about 103,000 EUR).

See the application forms

Portugal's High Commission for Migration launches airport campaign to combat FGM

Portugal's High Commission for Migration launches airport campaign to combat FGM

05/04/2019

The High Commission for Migration has launched a campaign in Portugal’s airports to prevent and combat female genital mutilation (FGM), alerting and informing the public on the consequences of FGM. The campaign will run until April 21 and thus covers the Easter holidays, a time when migrant girls are likely to visit family in countries where FGM is practised. This campaign is a continuation of earlier work with organisations and professionals for the eradication of FGM.

For the campaign launch, a member of the Board of Directors of the High Commission for Migration, Romualda Fernandes, and the Vice-President of the Commission for Citizenship and Gender Equality (CIG), Carlos Duarte, helped to spread awareness of the initiative at the Lisbon Airport. The campaign is promoted by the Secretary of State for Citizenship and Equality, the CIG and the High Commission for Migration, in partnership with ten civil society organisations. Neusa Trovoada, a designer from INMUNE – Institute of the Black Woman in Portugal, created the graphics for the campaign.

Preventing and combatting harmful practices such as FGM and forced marriage are among the strategic objectives of the Plan of Action for the Prevention and Combatting of Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence, which is part of the National Strategy for Equality and Non-Discrimination 2018-2030. FGM is also a crime under the Portuguese Penal Code and a violation of human rights, depriving women and girls of their right to physical and psychological integrity.

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J-PAL Europe seeks partners for European Social Inclusion Initiative

J-PAL Europe seeks partners for European Social Inclusion Initiative

04/04/2019

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab Europe (J-PAL Europe) recently launched the European Social Inclusion Initiative (ESII). This multi-year research and policy outreach initiative aims to generate new evidence and to share lessons for policies and programmes that support the social inclusion of migrants and refugees in Europe. The first phase of research will seek to answer the question, ‘How can education interventions improve the inclusion and the socioeconomic future of first- and second-generation migrants and refugees in Europe?’

As part of ESII, J-PAL Europe is seeking implementing partners who want to measure the impact of their programmes through rigorous evaluations. These partners—which could include governments, NGOs, multilateral organisations or businesses—will work closely with J-PAL’s network of researchers to design a randomised evaluation. Organisations that are interested in this opportunity can also participate in a 3-day training, to be held in Paris from 27 to 29 May 2019, that will help them understand the practicalities of conducting randomised evaluations. The deadline to apply for the training is 12 April 2019.

J-PAL Europe is based at the Paris School of Economics. It is the European arm of J-PAL, a global research centre working to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by scientific evidence. Founded in 2003 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, J-PAL’s research network now includes 170 professors at 56 universities around the world.

Read more about J-PAL Europe and ESII

Working group recommends new question about ethnicity for 2021 Portugal Census

Working group recommends new question about ethnicity for 2021 Portugal Census

04/04/2019

A working group of academics, NGO representatives and government officers is in favour of asking about ethnicity in Portugal’s 2021 Census. The group expects that the new question will allow better assessment of ethnic inequalities in Portugal. The Higher Council of Statistics of Statistics Portugal will make the final decision on whether to include the question.

The working group, which was established by the Portuguese government, suggests asking census respondents if they belong to one of four major subgroups in the Portuguese population:

  • White / Portuguese white / Of European origin
  • Black / Portuguese black / Afro-descendent / African origin
  • Asian / Portuguese Asian / Asian origin
  • Cigano / Cigano Portuguese / Roma

Responding to questions about ethnicity would be optional, according to the working group’s suggestion. Although the Portuguese constitution and data protection laws generally do not allow the collection of data related to race and ethnicity, the Portuguese Data Protection Authority may grant an exception if the data is anonymised.

However, the decision of the working group was not unanimous. Some members expressed fear that the collection of data on ethnicity may legitimise segregation along social categories, and that the establishment of subgroups by the state may be a tool to reinforce racism. In addition, the data risks being misinterpreted. To address these challenges, the working group’s final report suggests establishing an Observatory on Racism and Xenophobia.

A survey by the Centre for Studies and Surveys of Opinion of the Catholic University shows that 78% of Portuguese people are also in favour of collecting census data on race and ethnicity. 84% of citizens are willing to respond to a question about their ethnicity or origin, and 90% believe that there is currently discrimination in Portugal.

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EU Committee of the Regions set to launch Cities and Regions for Integration initiative

EU Committee of the Regions set to launch Cities and Regions for Integration initiative

04/04/2019

During its 134th plenary session, the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) will launch its Cities and Regions for Integration initiative, to be implemented in cooperation with the European Commission and various associations of local and regional authorities. The new initiative will increase efforts to improve the integration of migrants and will showcase the potential benefits of migrant integration in EU cities, towns and rural areas, as well as the political, social and economic costs of failed integration.

The initiative will bring together mayors and other local and regional politicians to promote diversity in building inclusive cities and ensuring social cohesion. Specific objectives include:

  • Providing a political platform for cities and regions to develop and promote proposals for EU policies and funding for the integration of migrants
  • Sharing good practices from local policies and initiatives in migrant integration
  • Promoting peer learning, especially linking cities that have more experience with cities and towns that have only recently begun to receive migrants
  • Sharing information on European funding for integration
  • Developing a positive narrative and examples/solutions for integration policies and countering disinformation
  • Collecting data on good experiences and presenting it in an interactive map

Participating associations include Eurocities, Council of European Municipalities and Regions, Assembly of European Regions, Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions and national associations of local and regional authorities. The 134th plenary session of the CoR will meet on 10 and 11 April 2019. The CoR represents local and regional authorities across the EU and advises on laws that impact cities and regions.

Read more about the new initiative