To give a broad overview about the situation of immigrants in Europe facts, figures and Problems are laid down. Then the EU immigration policy is explained Afterwards national circumstances and entrance countries are described. To give concrete examples how national integration policies are executed the migration policies of France, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy are described in depth. By taking these four EU founding nations as an example, distinctions in approaching migration, integration and anti-discrimination are revealed.
After providing EU immigration policy knowledge and awareness of national immigration circumstances, the co-relation between national approaches and the EU policy is analyzed and finally interpreted. Finally conclusion and detailed improvement proposal are given.
Immigrants in Europe
Immigration is a sensitive issue in EU, where the European Commission estimates there are up to 8 million illegal migrants. More than 200,000 illegal migrants were arrested in the EU in the first half of 2007, fewer than 90,000 were expelled. In its 2005 Action Programme on immigration, the European Commission stresses that 54% of first-generation immigrants with university degrees born in the Middle East and North Africa live in Canada or the United States, whilst 87% of those who have not completed their primary education or have not gone beyond primary or secondary school are in Europe
European migration and integration policy
Since signing the Maastricht treaty in 1992, the EU member states are working on a common migration policy. Issues such as anti-discrimination, asylum, immigration, and integration are discussed. Migration issues fall under intergovernmental law, so a state remains its sovereignty in implementing the EU migration policy. The first international integration effort certainly was: •UN Convention relating the status of refugees
After the 2nd World War the United Nations called in 1951 for a convention relating the status and the protection of refugees. They defined the rights of refugees and the responsibility of the country that granted asylum. The convention was approved in Geneva, but doesn’t belong to the “Geneva Conventions”, and came into force in 1954. Because new refugee circumstances arose and due to the fact that the convention included geographical and temporary limitations, and was only applicable to refugees before 1951, an enlargement of the convention’s scope was agreed in 1967.
In the 1967 protocol all temporary and geographical limitations war banned. 140 Countries have signed the convention and/or its protocol (see Map in Appenix1). By signing the convention a country is obligated to: •Ensure refugees treatment in accordance with international recognized standards of law •Ensure that refugees are granted asylum and are not forced to go back to their home countries •Promote appropriated procedures whether a refugee is a refugee or not •Seeking durable solutions to the phenomenon of refugees
Especially the last point means to me inescapably a proper and fair integration. To maintain human rights and to improve the evaluation of the national situations, the European Commission set up a network of experts on fundamental rights. These experts are assigned to draft an annual report on the conditions regarding the fundamental rights of each member state and to conduct thematic observations on specific issues chosen by the European Commission.
With the ultimate goal to develop a common immigration and asylum policy the EU set out incrementally a number of directives referring to racism, xenophobia, asylum, immigration and integration.
Racism and xenophobia
The European Community adopted within the Amsterdam Treaty following measures in the fight of racism and anti-discrimination.
•Directive 2000/43/EC on racial equality;
•Directive 2000/78/EC on equal treatment in employment;
•Community Action Programme to combat discrimination (2001-2006);
•Communication on immigration, integration and employment.
Asylum and immigration
The Seville European Council in June 2002 set deadlines for reaching agreement on a number of legislative instruments. In June 2003, the Thessaloniki European Council adopted conclusions on integration policies for fair treatment of third country nationals. Two Directives were adopted in 2003, one on the right to family reunification and the other on long-term residence status for third-country nationals. Additionally social organizations are monitored and co-financed. Some examples are the Centre on Racism and Xenophobia (EUMC) who organizes a series of round tables on anti-Semitism and Islam phobia or the AGIS program (2003-2007) which co finances actions on police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters. In order to facilitate closer cooperation with third countries of origin and transit, on 3 December 2002 the Commission adopted the communication COM(2002) 703 on integrating migration issues into the Union’s relations with third countries.
For its part, the Council adopted Directive 2003/9/EC laying down minimum standards for the reception of asylum seekers in the Member States and Regulation No 343/2003 establishing the criteria and mechanisms for determining the Member State responsible for examining an asylum application lodged in one of the Member States by a third-country national (Dublin II). In the context of managing migration flows, the Commission repeatedly stressed the cross-cutting nature of the measures adopted, most recently in its communication of 3 June 2003 on the development of a common policy on illegal migration, smuggling and trafficking in human beings, external borders and the return of illegal migrants.
Protection of minorities
In 2002 Europe was confronted by anti-Semitic incidents. The EU strongly condemned those incidents and undertook a series of measures to tackle the causes. The reports of the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights also raised issues related to the situation of social exclusion of Roma in the EU area and the acceding countries. In this context, the PHARE programme has funded projects that aim to improve the situation of Roma.
http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/human_rights/fundamental_rights_within_european_union/r10114_en.htm http://www.ambafrance-uk.org/Immigration-Immigration-and.html http://dalje.com/en-world/france-drops-integration-contract-from-eu-plan/160362 http://www.integrationindex.eu/integrationindex/2383.html
According to the European Commission, more migration is needed to offset the EU’s ageing problem. But the opinions of the member states are different, so it is very hard to agree on a common policy of economic migration. Under the French proposals, EU leaders would pledge to strengthen the fight against illegal migration and expel more illegal migrants, as well as confirm previous EU commitments such as a common asylum policy by 2010 and biometric visas. EU states have already beefed up cooperation against illegal migration, creating a border agency and agreeing this year that illegal migrants could be locked up for up to 18 months. They have also agreed biometric visas for foreigners, adding to the biometric fingerprinting of asylum seekers.
interministerial Immigration Control Committee
Situation in France
Since the industrial revolution and especially after the 2nd World War France draws on guest workers hand in order to serve the high need of work. From then on France can look back on a constant increase of immigrants. In the beginning of the 20th century it is estimated that in France about 1 Mio. Immigrants were living. The latest population census in 2008 revealed that at the moment 5 Mio. Immigrants are living in France. At the end of 20th century the need of work decreased dramatically and governmental repressive actions forced many immigrants to re-emigrate.
During the economic and oil crises in 1932 first quote rulings for certain branches were made. After the 2nd World War in 1945 the principal of precedence of French by equal qualification was introduced. In 1974 an immigration stop of loan workers followed. Only due to the fundamental right of family immigrants who already have family in France were enabled to immigrate.
The French migration policy addresses mainly integration, immigration policy and Anti-discrimination.
France pursued an “integrationist” policy from the mid-1980s onward, devoting government resources to organizations that encouraged immigrants to abide by the law but retain their distinctive cultures and traditions.
In order to full-fill the state’s responsibility of durable integration, the French government set up an integration contract between the French government and immigrants. Content of the contract is determined by immigrants in cooperation with the state. The government has decided to require the estimated 100,000 legal immigrants arriving in France each year to sign an “integration contract” upon arrival if they wish to obtain a residence card. By signing the contract, immigrants agree to undergo language training and instruction on the “values of French society.” The certificate awarded upon successful completion of these classes entitles the immigrant to a 10-year residence permit. If the immigrant fails to earn the certificate, he or she will receive only a one-year residence permit. “France is a republic with rules that are the foundation of our national community,” said Social Affairs Minister François Fillon.
The new HALDE equality body was launched in June 2005, with a budget of 10.5 million euros and a staff of 66 for 2006. HALDE provides services such as legal advice, alternative dispute resolution and independent investigations to victims of discrimination. HALDE can also bring cases in its own name on 19 types of discrimination, including race/ethnicity, religion/belief and nationality. The new laws also punish nationality and racial/ethnic discrimination in education, social protection, social security and access to goods and services like healthcare and housing. See Latraverse, Report on Measures to Combat Discrimination: Directives 2000/43/EC and 2000/78/EC Country Report/Update 2006, State of affairs until 8 January 2007