A helping hand to refugees and immigrants

A helping hand to refugees and immigrants

We fully support an extensive refugee integration programme

The process of good and effective integration can last years – in many cases way beyond actual naturalisation and often extending to second or third generations.

It is commitment to succeed that underpins the process where receiving societies undertake to welcome refugees and provide them with opportunities to become familiar with the language, to recognise the basic values of that country, its customs and social/economic framework. It is important that refugees show a determination to become part of the host society and become a contributing member of it, through a good work ethic and desire to educate themselves.

Each and every asylum seeker arrives in a host country with differing circumstances with an individual story to tell and background. That is why effective and sustained integration programmes are an investment in the future – for both migrant and for the state in which they make their new home. Well planned and interactive integration give refugees the right start, enabling them to acquire vital skills to become self-sufficient and ready to give something back to the host, even if that process takes time. For this reason all the efforts made are well worth it.

The return on investment for society is that refugees become better-equipped citizens capable of contributing to society in a variety of different ways, capitalising on their individualism and character to the benefit of not only themselves but the many.

Due to their vulnerability, refugees need to be treated in a way that respects their particular needs. Unlike regular migrants, they come to a given country because they are in need of protection, often with no assets. They do not have a place to live, a job, or a plan for what they should do. They cannot return to their country of origin perhaps due to a real threat of being persecuted, tortured or even killed.

According to the Article 1A (para. 2) of the Geneva Convention:

A refugee is a person, who owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of the country, or who, not having a nationality and being outside the country of his former habitual residence as a result of such events, is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to return to it. Therefore, apart from regular assistance, refugees need additional and targeted help to enable them to start a new and stable life. The experiences of many European countries prove that the individual integration programs seem to be one of the most efficient measures to implement in order to meet a refugees’ needs. Finally, each person is different, and only individual integration program can respond to specific individual needs and interests.

When integration may fail

Successful integration is a process that happens over time. Most importantly, however, it must happen across many different policy areas – e.g. education, employment, entrepreneurship, and culture – and within different contexts. This assumption is also extremely important in the context of the integration of beneficiaries of international protection. Abandonment of integration measures leads to the marginalisation and social exclusion of refugee populations. Social exclusion of refugees may result in many negative consequences for both populations – refugees and the host society. Therefore, it is worth highlighting the features of marginalisation, which are easy to recognise among refugees – ‘Even when assistance was offered, migrants noted difficulties accessing it.’ 

Marginalisation has been characterised scientifically as:

    • A lack of power and lack of access to the decision-making processes; less rights and more obligations; less choices and more restrictions; less economic opportunities and lower economic position; less educational, professional and leisure opportunities; greater exposure to the effects of social pressures and crises, legal discrimination, social stigmatisation, and discrimination practices.
    • The main characteristics of marginalisation are accompanied by the feelings and attitudes of marginalised groups. These include a feeling of deprivation (feeling that needs cannot be met), a sense of danger, frustration (tension that can lead to aggression), alienation (isolation), the feeling of an unfulfilled life and to carry a sense of blame for it, the inability to control one’s own life, a tendency to surrender to the fate and decisions of others, pessimism, and a real fear of the future.
    • The consequence of such feelings and attitudes within a marginalised group include apathy, non-involvement, passivity, absenteeism, and/or hedonism and consumerism, a lack of trust in others, resignation, individualism or escape from reality, alcoholism, drug abuse, and even extremism, terrorism and violence.
    • Given the above, a lack of integration measures is a short-sight policy, which sooner or later leads to social problems and instability. That’s why Call For Duty works hard to help ensure vulnerable, abandoned and isolated people should be cared for as a priority of our society.

Young refugees and migrants – the dilemma of human trafficking

War, persecution and torture force many people to flee to their country. Migrants and refugees are specifically vulnerable to human trafficking if they are not able to travel by normal process, and to live and find work, in their chosen country of destination. The key to preventing trafficking among these groups lies in promoting safe and regular migratory journeys, regular residence status and access to the employment, as well as working to prevent and resolve conflicts – not to mention investing in – their communities of origin for those who want to stay where they are. Here, the concept of vulnerability is intrinsically linked to that of resilience.

Irregular migrants is a term specific to that vulnerable group which could be ensnared in human trafficking. While not all irregular migrants are vulnerable, it is clear that migrating irregularly is a strong factor in their vulnerability to exploitation and other abuses for refugees and migrants. Call For Duty stands firmly against this.

Call For Duty fights for human dignity and believes that the disdain of another is the denial of oneself as a human being.

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