Posts Tagged: European immigration issues

Family reunification: Interior Ministry calls for comments

The Finnish Ministry of the Interior recently published a working group report on the present state of family reunification of refugees and displaced persons in Finland. This report seeks to clarify the background to family reunification and to examine the prospects for amending the associated regulations. The report was prepared in response to the programme of the

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Migrants’ Rights Network: Human Rights Court rules that asylum seekers cannot be sent to Greece

The European Court of Human Rights ruled last week in the case of M.S.S. v Belgium and Greece. It found that the Belgian authorities had violated the rights of asylum seeker M.S.S., and an Afghan national by sending him to Greece using the Dublin II regulation. This in effect means that asylum seekers from the UK cannot be returned to Greece under the Dublin regulation.

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Finland’s difficult quest for foreign laborers

In a recent article in the London Financial Times. there is an article about how Finland is aiming to become a magnet for foreign laborers. While this is understandable, taking into account Finland’s aging population and the shortage of workers in some sectors of the economy, the country’s policy makers still have a lot of

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Some good advice about Finnish culture

Some people who move to Finland for the first time may suffer from a generous dose of culture shock like in any country. In the thirty years that I have lived in Finland on and off, the best advice I can give you and the Finns is the following: What is normal in your culture

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Foreigners will help Finns see who they are

My father, who moved to Europe from Argentina at the age of 21in the early 1950s, told me that he never learned so much about himself except when he became a foreigner. In the same manner, and as more foreigners move to Finland, can they help us see the positive and negative aspects of our

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Some questions about immigration to Finland

Many thanks to all of you that have taken so actively part in the debate on immigration to Finland. There have been a wide spectrum of opinions over the issue. The most positive matter that these comments have shown is that we can debate them in a civil fashion. But there are some questions that

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Where will Finland get foreign workers?

I took part in a very interesting seminar in June on foreigners in Finland. Here are some conclusions from that seminar on what real challenges Finland faces with respect to its aging population and luring foreign workers to the country. 1) It will be VERY difficult for Finland to attract qualified labor from other countries.

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Turning naivety on Finland into action

Like many second-generation Finns that lived abroad, I too hoped to move back to live in Finland one day. While the decision to move back was an easy one, I encountered my first setback when I applied for a residence permit. In the late-1970s, Finland had a pretty draconian view of who was and was

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When in Finland do as the Finns do…

I read an interesting post in Svenskfinland titled, “When in Rome, do as the Romans,” and it set me thinking. The post continues: “…in other words, that integration should mean that migrants to Finland so quickly as possibly forget their own background and take on entirely a Finnish lifestyle – essentially abandoning or replacing their

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Spain’s Valencia shameful example to its immigrants

The regional government of Valencia, which is ruled by the right-wing opposition Popular Party (PP) , is planning to force immigrants to sign a contract obliging them to respect local “customs and traditions.” Apart from being illegal and a slap in the face to respect for other cultures, the PP-led initiative is racist as well.

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The Ulysses syndrome: an illness of immigrants

I came across an interesting article Monday in the Ecuadorian daily El Comercio on what some psychologists call the Ulysses syndrome, which is an illness that inflicts some immigrants when they live separated in faraway lands from their loved ones. The article continues: Norma lived in terror and in hiding. This 45-year-old single mother left

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