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LK BK

COUNCIL OF EUROPE

CONSEIL DE L'EUROPE

I&I / Interculturalism and Immigration

LINK | BOOK

LK BK

I&I 4 MISS YOU ROPE

Interculturalism and Immigration A Europe-wide research Final outcome of 4: Miss You, Rope! project

4: Miss You, Rope! is … 1 year of project, 9 NGO´s, 9 European Countries, 12 International Meetings within the project, 28 different medias analyzed, 100 local and international volunteers, 2.323 interviewed persons, more than 3.000 citizen involved in the whole project.

www.linkyouth.org

4 MISS YOU ROPE


I&I LK BK

4

MISS YOU ROPE

LINK | BOOK

www.linkyouth.org

Interculturalism and Immigration A Europe-wide research Final outcome of 4: Miss You, Rope! project


I&I Immigration and Interculturality A Europe-wide research. Š 2010 Associazione Culturale Link - Altamura 03 LinkBook series This publication is the final outcome of 4: Miss You, Rope!, a project by Associazione Culturale Link based on an idea of Sintija Lase, written during her European Volunteer Service in Altamura, Italy. The project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein. This publication has been supported by the Council of Europe, European Youth Foundation within the project I&I Immigration and Interculturality. A Europe-wide research. The Council of Europe is not responsible for the contents of this publication. Editors Maria Teresa Bellini Lucia Creanza Steve Egan Birgit Fetty Gonzalo Martinez Elena Papalabrou Nicoleta Robciuc Tsvetlina Zaharlieva Viktoria Zenkova Coordination Birgit Atzl Graphic design Michele Colonna Printed Grafica&Stampa - Altamura / Italy


Index

5 Introduction 6 Step by step 9 Involved partner countries 11 Austria | Österreich 19 Bulgaria | Bâlgarija 23 France| France 31 Greece | Hellás 38 Italy | Italia 45 Latvia | Latvija 51 Romania | România 57 Spain | España 65 United Kingdom 69 Recommendations and Conclusions 75

Annexes 76 Partners 81 Questionnaire 85 Europe for Citizens Programme 87 European Youth Foundation Council of Europe


5 4:miss you, rope!

Introduction

When it is about immigration, there are plenty of reasearches, studies and analysis around Europe, but most of the time this big amount of information is coming from specialized bodies, institutions or professionals. The idea on which the project 4:Miss You, Rope! was based on was to make a picture from a different point of view, the one of civil society organizations. Nine European partners, during several months have met together, discussed, and planned a common research on different aspects related to the topic of immigration in Europe. In nine countries we have done surveys, interviews with citizens, meetings with local organizations. We have also tried to better understand the universe of media, how information can influence our perception and how it can heavily contribute to the opinion building process of every single person. Then, by visiting other countries, meeting the partners and the local stakeholders, we have tried to reflect on the results of our research and to involve citizens in our common reflections, organizing meetings, conferences and giving visibility to our common work. We have gathered quite a lot of information, we have had the chance to see at the issue of migration in Europe putting ourselves “out of the box”, that’s to say looking at the picture as Europeans more than as nationals of our own country, which actually nowadays doesn’t happen very often. Leaving back our being Romanian, rather than Austrian or French behind, has been difficult but necesssary to start building a common understanding of what migration means in Europe rather than in each European country. We can’t properly say we found a conclusion, but we can assert, at the end of the project that our initial need was concrete and justified. Different laws, different levels of integration and different numbers make it very hard to have a real common policy in the field of immigration in Europe. So the conclusion of the project is what you can read in this book, but also much more which will be kept forever in our memories and that belongs to all the human relations started thanks to the project. Then we have numbers to compare, statistics, graphs.... but as we have stated since the beginning of this project, we do not have any pretension to be scientific because other people are supposed to work on that level. We only wanted to make a picture, made by people committed in their everyday life in civil society organizations, and that’s what we did. Nevertheless we worked on some reccomandations that we hope will be useful for European Institutions and that you will find at the end of the book. Not a conclusion, a foreword instead.


Step by step

2009 February Start of the project With a phone call we got the information of the approved project, the same day we informed all the partners and we started to work on the programme.

March – April The Bulgarian partner organized the Kick-off Meeting in the beautiful city of Karlovo. During this meeting we decided the Guidelines of the project, the positions of the partners and the budget. After this meeting internet communication helped us with the preparation of the research. Every organisation took the time to create the working groups for the research.

May – June From 1 May until 30 June the working groups went on the streets to complete in total around 2.500 questionnaires. The media analysis started and the volunteers were occupied with reading newspapers, watching TV and listening to the radio.

July Collection of the results of the research which the volunteers in every country then analyzed and evaluated in the same time.


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2010 September The head organisation, Link, organised the International Conference Training in Matera, Italy. Three people from each partner organisation participated to compare the results, to define the conclusions and recommendations for the European Commission and to plan the following National Meetings.

October – November Each partner country hosted a National Meeting where three members of the partner countries disseminated the research results, trained others about different cultures and experienced the different ways of living for migrants in European countries.

January Every project needs an evaluation, so all National Leaders met again, this time in Altamura, Italy, to speak about the real outcome of the project, to evaluate on future projects and to speak about financial issues. Writing the text for the booklet, working with the graphic designer, doing corrections and at the end of the hard work: The booklet in our hands!

→ →→→→ The project is over… next one will follow!


involved partner Countries

United Kingdom

France

Spain


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Latvia

Austria Romania

Bulgaria

Italy Greece


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Austria | Österreich

NATIONAL SITUATION Grenzenlos is an organisation working since 60 years on intercultural learning. In recent years the words migration and newcomers have been common place. In Austria, the topic of Migration is a very sensitive one, as Austria is historically seen a country with a high number of immigrants and asylum seekers. Because of this, Grenzenlos decided to be a part of the project 4: Miss You, Rope!. Mainly to raise the awareness of immigration and asylum seekers and also to have the opportunity to illustrate the actual situation of Austria in Europe.

SURVEY Grenzenlos completed 201 interviews; 44,8% male and 55,2% female. The nationalitiesv who were involved in the interviews were: Austria, Bolivia, Ghana, Ethiopia, Montenegro, Russia, Ukraine, Turkey, Nigeria and Chechenia. In Austria, the biggest group of immigrants are people from Turkey and Ex-Yugoslavia. We would like to present some results of some of the questions, which we define very interesting: →→ To the question Have you ever had a problem/conflict with a person from another culture? 88 of our interviewees answered with “yes” stating the main reasons to be: 1 incompatibility of characters (33 persons) 2 differences between cultures (30 persons) 3 misunderstandings (24 persons) 4 lack of knowledge of other cultures – (just 1 person)

→→ The main methods for getting information about other cultures were TV, followed by press, but many interviewees mentioned that they get information from more than one medium. 97 persons of 201 said that reporting in general is minimal and 75 of 201 saw it as adequate.

→→ Therefore, it was also very interesting to get the answer to Question 8: What have you done to integrate yourself into the society… to integrate immigrants in your community?


“… In my opinion integration is a matter of every individual persons and has nothing to do with citizenship. It has to be supported legally.” “…. I fight for equal laws for bi-national couples …” “… Discussions. I try to call attention to racism and unfair treatment. I try to reduce my own prejudices.”

→→ 137 interviewees mentioned in the questionnaire that they like to live in Austria, but 64 would like to live in another country or would like to go back where they lived before. Mainly, those with a higher education stated that they would like to change the country.

→→ When asked the question Do you feel a European citizen? 97 out of 201 answered with “No, I don’t feel as European citizen”. Most of these 97 interviewees were not from European countries, but also a lot of Austrians didn’t feel like European citizens either.

→→ The main answer to the question What should be changed to reinforce integration? was to “reinforce welfare”. Of course, people working in a non-governmental organisations, or close to one, answered to give more support to NGOs.

MEDIA ANALYSE For the Media Analysis, Grenzenlos decided to chose two newspapers; we read them every day in May and June 2009. The first one is a national daily newspaper named Der Standard and the second one is a Viennese district newspaper called BZ – Die Bezirkszeitung, which is published every two weeks in different versions for every districts of Vienna and we read the editions of our home districts. Der Standard We chose this media because, although it’s a national daily newspaper, it is Austria’s “intellectual” newspaper and it is not that wide spread or wide read as other newspapers. Der Standard is published six days a week. In total we found 74 articles concerning the topic of immigration. Their length varied from one column to ten columns but with an average of two to five columns. The topics were chronicle, comments, national, inter/cultural focuses, front page articles, international, caricatures, reports from Vienna, economy, culture and sports.


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We found two articles about migration inside the EU, concerning Eastern Europe, Poland, Greece, Italy and Turkey (in accordance to a future entrance in the EU). We found sixteen articles about immigration from outside of the EU. They were mostly about refugees and asylum seekers, especially about Africa, Libya and Switzerland. There were no writers with a migration-background but there was one guest comment about national law from a migrant. Words that were used very often were “asylum”, “asylum seeker”, “illegal immigrant” or “ethno kitchen”. The pictures shown together with the articles are often linked to stereotypes, like for example women with headscarves. The topics written about were mainly: National laws (concerning deportation), international law (often about EU enlargement), federal projects, private projects/initiatives/NGOs (also anti-immigrant initiatives), teachers of Islamic religious education that can’t speak proper German, neo-Nazis, about the EU-election campaigning or the FPÖ´s (right wing party) agitation against foreigners within EU-election campaigning, racism and some mention about topics that were important at that time in Austria (that Mohammed is the most baptism name in Vienna, a Sikh murder in Vienna, border patrol… etc). Topics written about in Der Standard 1

Economy

1

Culture

1

Sports

11

Frontpage articles

12

9

29

National International Chronicle

14

7

Comments Caricatures

12

3

(Inter) cultural focusses

Reports

1

Vienna specific

BZ – Die Bezirkszeitung Grenzenlos chose this media because we thought that it would be very interesting for us to concentrate on a type of media which is directly linked to our daily lives. We choose the 2nd and the 16th district in Vienna because these Viennese districts are both very multicultural and so the newspapers are geared to be a link between “real Viennese people” and immigrants. We found 23 articles relating to the topic in these two ‘Bezirksbättern’ during the two months. The length varied from one short column to four columns, so the articles were mostly short and there were hardly any large ones. When we focus upon topics like migration, intercultural dialogue and integration, we found that the articles were


related to art, culture or specific information about Vienna. After that came politics, tourism, youth and leisure activities. In this newspaper we found two articles about migration in the EU with no specific indications about certain countries and two indications about immigration from outside the EU with no specific countries as well. Mostly, the authors were not mentioned in the articles so it was not clear if the writer had a migration background or not. In the articles we found there was no chance for the migrants or asylum seeker to speak about the written topic and neither did we find any interview given from a person with a migration background. Words which were repeated a lot were “tolerance”, “respect”, “together”, and “culture”. The word “asylum” was not mentioned very often. If there were any pictures, the most of them were event announcements. The topics which were written about in the articles were mostly according to special projects of the town of Vienna or projects from private initiatives or NGOs. Two articles were about national law. Other topics were culture and theatre, election campaigning and antiracism-work.

Topics written about in BZ-Die Bezirkszeitung 18

Politics

27

Art and culture

23

Vienna specific

9

Tourism

23

Events

<1

Youth and recreation

To summarise, our experience of the survey is that we were a little scared to offend immigrants by asking them these types of questions because we were already aware of the negative atmosphere many migrants face in Austria. But, when we started the research and tested it, we found out that many migrants want to talk about their situation and are happy if someone is interested in their point of view. So, in most of the interview situations, we did not have any problems. Generally speaking, we didn’t get that many negative reactions. Some people were reluctant to get involved in another survey on migration. But, as mentioned before, in Austria the situation is unique and it is a very sensitive topic. Especially at the moment, because Vienna is close to the elections and the rightwing party (FPÖ) is getting stronger and tensions are high regarding this topic.


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We also asked people working in, or connected with, the NGO sector. In our opinion, the media has had a strong power for many years. In Austria, the situation is difficult because there is a free newspaper in each underground station and public place. This daily newspaper, called ‘Heute’, belongs to a newspaper group who writes strongly against migration (it is a kind of gossip rag or ‘klatschblatt’). Such newspapers can be quite damaging as at the moment the situation in Austria is not very ‘migration friendly’. Immigrants are facing a hard time and the media has a duty to report in an objective way. By giving out free newspapers with a strong viewpoint, you ‘exclude’ people who are not able to buy other newspapers with more balanced view points. Another important issue in Austria is that public TV is not fulfilling its education mandate.

CASE STUDY Marriage without Borders A volunteer involved in the project suggested using a case study of an Austrian organisation. She was and is personally involved in an NGO called Ehe ohne Grenzen (in English Marriage without Borders). It was founded in 2006 as a reaction to the Alien law which became effective on the 1st January 2006. The NGO started as a support group for Austrians who are married or who are going to marry with “third country citizens”. In this context, “third country citizen” means people who do not have a passport from an EU-Country. This law dramatically restricted the possibility for people to live together in Austria.

National Meeting in Austria, Viktoria (Latvia), Martin (Bulgaria) and Raffaella (Italy).


The initiative Ehe ohne Grenzen defines itself as a platform for bi-national families and partnerships as well as working like a pressure group lobbying for their cause in politics and in public. Grenzenlos chose this organisation for the case study, apart from the personal involvement; it is also a good example of the situation in Austria. Bi-national couples could be seen as the best example for intercultural dialogue or integration. These couples experience cultural diversity in their daily life and could be seen as experts concerning multicultural life and in many cases also concerning the law. The Austrian government, however, does not want immigrants to come and live in Austria. The government always tightens the law and they invent new regulations that make it impossible for non-EU-citizens to settle down in Austria. The minister of the interior denies define Austria as an immigration country. Another obstacle that bi-national couples have to manage is the law about the minimum income to get the residence permit. The minimum income, according to the law of 2006, that a couple has to have so that the non-Austrian person can get the residence permit, is 1091 Euros. Due to the fact that the migrant is not allowed to work without the residence permit, this amount of money has to be earned from the Austrian part alone. But this is really hard to do, since many full-time jobs do not pay enough to meet this minimum. When applying for a Residence Permit from abroad, all those who apply for the first time have to do so in their home country. Because of this, many migrants from â&#x20AC;&#x153;third countriesâ&#x20AC;? are asylum seekers; they cannot go home without being in danger because in many cases they ran away. The authorities induced illegalisation because this law became effective without information and without transition time and so some people were suddenly illegal in Austria, some even without knowing it. All-inclusive suspicion of sham marriages is evident due to the fact that as soon as a bi-national couples registers to get married, the authorities have to inform the police. They investigate whether the couple only wants to marry for papers or for love. www.ehe-ohne-grenzen.at


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National Meeting The National Meeting in Austria took place from the 23rd â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 26th of October 2009. In the frame of 4: Miss You, Rope! Grenzenlos had the honour of hosting three guests from Latvia, Italy and Bulgaria. Whilst they were visiting the celebration of 60 years of Grenzenlos took place for 300 guests and some international authorities, and it was a great opportunity to show and to discuss the idea of the project. During their stay, we showed the volunteers from the partner organisations the actual situation for immigrants in Austria. We went directly on the field to show them the immigrant districts and restaurants.

National Meeting in Austria, Viktoria (Latvia), Raffaella (Italy) and Margarete (Austria).


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BULGARIA | Bトネgarija

NATIONAL SITUATION The situation with the officially registered immigrated people in Bulgaria is illustrated in the following figure: Amount of foreigners

15.000

57.000

59.000

61.000

2001

2004

2005

2006

Statistics from 2006 show that 77% of the immigrants in Bulgaria come from Europe, 19% from Asia, 2% from America, 1% from Africa and 1% are stateless. Immigrants from Europe include people from Turkey, Russian Federation; Ukraine; Republic of Macedonia, but about 85.2% come from Moldova. People from China and Armenia predominate in the flow from Asia. There is no special ministry dealing with immigrants, however, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is controlling the immigration and emigration flows through its consulates. The Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Labour and Social Policies also deal with different immigration issues. All immigrants in Bulgaria have the right to health access, education, citizenship, buying their own property in Bulgaria, registering their cars, to marry a Bulgarian citizen and to get married in Bulgaria.


National Meeting in Bulgaria. International exhibition.

The Municipality of Karlovo, where the organisation is located, includes 4 towns and 23 villages with a total population of 62,000 inhabitants. The officially registered foreigners on the territory of the municipality are 295 coming from different countries, with a predominance of Ukrainians.

SURVEY We carried out the research with the help of our youth volunteers. We polled the opinion of 150 foreigners and 350 Bulgarian citizens of different ages, educational and socio-economic background. Most of the foreigners have come to Bulgaria in the 196070 for personal reasons â&#x20AC;&#x201C; to get married or to work. There is also a recent tendency of elderly English couples buying property in our region to live here after retirement. 80% of the foreign respondents in the survey answered that they feel at home in Bulgaria. All of the respondents said that there is only little news about immigrants in the media and that more intercultural events should be organized at local level to help for better integration of different cultures.


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MEDIA ANALYSE We carried out the media analysis choosing the three different media: internet, TV and newspaper. We also tried to cover local, regional and national scope. The main findings were in the newspapers Dialogue Today, Maritza and Trud, which we analysed for the period of the survey May-August 2009. There was no specific news about immigrants but rather mainly about Bulgarian emigrants working abroad and their problems or about other case studies. There was, however, information about the start up of the Blue Card project by the Chamber of Commerce for the recognition of immigrants’ skills, abilities and qualifications.

CASE STUDY There is an established Russian club in our Municipality who annually organises Days of the Russian Culture in Karlovo with various activities – exhibitions, meetings with famous successful Russian people living in Bulgaria, festivals etc. This is how they promote their culture and traditions among the citizens and maintain their traditions, regardless of the fact that this group of immigrants feel most integrated in our society. Another good practice is the case study of a Norwegian immigrant who came to live in Bulgaria in 2001 and is actively involved in the civil life of our community and even created a website to promote our beautiful region among other foreigners – www.dekarlovo.info. He has used his own resources for the design and maintenance of the website as he has also published promotional leaflets about our region.

NATIONAL MEETING For the International Day of Tolerance on 16th November, we organized an Intercultural Day. We invited the immigrant communities living on the territory of our Municipality, to present their cultures and traditions on specially prepared stands for each group. The Bulgarian group presented the traditions around Christmas. The Roma community had prepared a very good visual presentation of the history of the Roma migrations, their flag, traditions and customs. The Karakachan community presented traditional ritual breads and costumes. Apart from the local groups, we had our partners from Greece and Latvia presenting their cultures. Our EVS volunteer from Sweden also presented her country and the most popular celebrations they have.


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FRANCE | france

NATIONAL SITUATION During the months when we were carrying out the research, there was serious debate in France on the “national identity” issue. France is the European country in which the Department of Immigration and Integration is also, or mainly, the Ministry of National Identity. In 2004, 4.9 million immigrants lived in metropolitan France, representing 8.1% of the population. Compared to 1999, migrants from Africa and Asia are more numerous on the territory, while those from the former migration patterns in Spain and Italy are less. In the migrant population there are now an equal number of men and women. Thanks to newcomers, the migrant population has not ‘grown old’ between 1999 and 2004-2005, in contrast to non-immigrants. The educational level is significantly higher for migrants, as for the general population. Compared to 1982, four times as many migrants hold a diploma of higher education. Source: INSEE, 1999 census, annual censuses of 2004 and 2005. Migration policies →→ July 24, 2006 Promulgation of the Law on immigration and integration to ‘pass from a suffered immigration to a selective immigration’. To achieve this goal this law toughens conditions for family reunification, the main source of immigration are seen as ‘suffered’. There is a control on mixed marriages and strict conditions for obtaining a residence card (so they can obtain a long stay visa) as an employee. To move toward ‘selective immigration’, a form of selection of the workforce is expected.

→→ On May 6, 2007 Nicolas Sarkozy was elected President of the Republic. Brice Hortefeux was appointed Minister of Immigration, Integration, National Identity and Co-Development. Eight of the twelve historians calling history committee of the Future City National’s history of immigration (CNHI), resigned in protest against the creation of a ministry linking immigration and national identity stating “It is not the role of a democratic state to define identity”.


→→ November 20, 2007 enactment of the law on immigration control, integration and asylum. The Act confirms and clarifies the objectives of immigration policy: limiting family immigration and development of labor migration.

SURVEY The questionnaire was presented to 24 French citizens and 24 foreign citizens living in Dinan, Cote’s d’Armor, and its neighborhood. Migrants come from: Great Britain (6), Poland (2), Ireland (2), Italy (2), Senegal (2), Spain, Burkina Faso, Germany, Brazil, Austria, Russia, Congo, China, Holland. Of the French people, five are ancient migrants from: Iraqi Kurdistan (2), Morocco, Congo Kinshasa, Vietnam and one comes from Guadeloupe. Interviewees profile 69% of interviewed are women, 42% were aged between 17 and 28 years. The educational level is very high: 65% of respondents have a higher level of study, and 31% have secondary education level. The majority came either for labor issues (27%) or relative to their relationship / personal networks (27%).

→→ Among other reasons, it is interesting to transcribe the motivations of British citizens living here: their need to have a different way of life. The answers are divided in: safer culture, personal challenge and new experiences, family life better here, beautiful countryside and way of living, to retire.

→→ Regarding jobs, we note a gap between the positions held in the country of origin and unhooked in the host country France.

→→ 29.1% of migrants interviewed had changed jobs or are still looking for a job. In the first case, the change does not correspond to an improvement in their own careers. Respondents replying to question 17 (Do you think your abilities are recognized?) explained a difficulty linked to the recognition of their own skills in the new country. This is due to different reasons, the equivalence of diplomas and qualifications and often the knowledge and proficiency (or not) of the French language, spoken and written. During undertaking the French research, we have taken into account separately the responses of French citizens who are former migrants.


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The emerging items of the survey we can summarize like this

→→ The issue of multiculturalism, inter-culturalism and the challenge of intercultural education. 58% of those interviewed said they were in daily contact with other cultures, 2% say they never have. This rate increases to 75% if immigrant citizens. It is a data that we can relate to the multicultural French society even if the link between a multicultural society and intercultural relationships that is built into is not entirely automatic. Of course, plurality of cultures within one society (like French for example) is a result of migration, the traces of cultural histories of colonization and decolonization, globalization of communication, etc. Multicultural society is a society where different cultures, nations, ethnics, religious groups life within the same territory but not necessarily coming into contact with each other. [Education Pack of Council of Europe] The word interculturality suggests exchange and interaction which produces new images, new histories, and new cultures. Intercultural societies are societies where different cultures, national groups, etc. living ­together within a territory, maintain open relations of interaction, exchange and mutual recognition of their own and respective values and ways of life. [Education Pack of Council of Europe]

→→ To question 9, Can you tell us about an intercultural event you know? several people gave examples of music festivals. They are, no doubt, worth seeing so you can learn about and enjoy music, dance or the cuisine of different cultures but is that interculturality? We consider youth exchanges across Europe closer to interculturality or the training centre of Dinan, where French and English members can meet, exchange ideas, break stereotypes etc.

→→ To question 16 Name the most important thing to do to improve relations between people of different cultures / countries responses were varied, but some keywords were appearing on a recurring basis: knowledge of language (4), learn and discover (4), understand the differences (2), communication / exchange / meeting (14), equal opportunities (2), opening (3), learning / education / deconstruct (3).


This is the concept of “intercultural education” which we can conclude from the answers: Intercultural education proposes processes to enable the discovery of mutual relationships and the dismantling of barriers…, if the prefix ‘inter’ is given its full meaning, this necessarily implies: interaction, exchange, breaking down barriers, reciprocity, objective solidarity. [Education Pack of Council of Europe]

→→ Integration and the role that can take communities and associations of migrants Among the interviewees, the term integration refers to two directions: 1 One refers to the approximat terms assimilation or adaptation, and defines integration as a mean of helping immigrants to adapt the lifestyle of the host country by learning the language, culture, history of the new country, all rules of democracy and human rights. 2 The other meaning suggests an expansion to a dimension of reciprocity and exchange. In this second case, the key terms used were: tolerance to differences, education in school, respect, interaction, acceptance of people with their differences, and others. The meaning of integration in this context implies that the effort should not only be conducted by migrants who “must integrate themselves” but also by local people, who must learn to welcome new people. Integration, in the French dictionary, is a process by which a person or group becomes part of a community. The adjustment can be reciprocal, when we talk about education for citizenship and integration, as suggested in nr. 24 – 25 of Cahiers de l’Action (INJEP), why not think of it as a process to adapt institutions to diversity? To integrate oneself means becoming a citizen of the new country – not only learning the language and its history, understanding ones rights and responsibility in the new country, but also having the right to live in equal conditions not caring about religion, culture, lifestyle and origin. A French former migrant remarked that people should not forget that someone coming from other political contexts is not necessarily accustomed to a democratic system and should discover and understand the functioning of the host country. We should help immigrants to find any mode of French life: employment law, constitution, rules of democracy to find its own rights. It should be an association that deals with understanding the immigrant rights here: if we do not know the society we are away from it, isolated from it. [Education Pack of Council of Europe]


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Another French citizen, a former migrant, referred to a more active role of associations and migrant communities in the process of integration, and stated that they must be organized for solidarity.

→→ About the question concerning what the respondents do to integrate the immigrants or (for immigrants) to integrate themselves, we found it interesting that the French, former migrants have responded more as migrants than as French citizens or maintaining a dual perspective on the subject, none chose to respond only as a French citizen “When I arrived here I had no feeling of being foreign, I developed it here”.

MEDIA ANALYSE The analysis showed that most people have information about other countries and cultures through television, as well as from people from other cultures the press, foreign radios and the internet. The first newspaper chosen for the media analysis in France was Le Petit Bleu, a weekly local publication. The second medium selected was a daily newspaper OuestFrance, which is the best-selling newspaper in France, although its content is almost exclusively on the Great West. The first striking feature of this media analysis is the relatively low number of articles on topics searched for. Although the presence of migrants is a fact in the geographical area covered by this survey, this isn’t completely apparent from reading the two newspapers. In fact, the most striking evidence showing the presence of migrants in the country of Dinan is the presence of advertisements intended for British. Most articles, about the refering topic, are very short and their content is purely factual. It details activities such as schedules and venues of events, “intercultural” African concerts, Franco-British meetings etc. The testimonies of migrants are virtually absent. There were no articles written by migrants, the authors are exclusively local journalists. Furthermore, when the articles go beyond more description, the tone is always positive. Most items are related to European Union. Two factors may explain this fact: ** At that time, the 2009 European elections campaign was in process. ** The largest share of migrants settled in the area are migrants from the European Union.


Terminology such as ‘sharing’ and ‘exchange’ is often used by journalists. ‘Migrants’ never appears concerning EU members and generally the words used are an equivalent of ‘newly arrived people’. The use of words such as ‘migration’ and ‘migrants’ are mainly used in reference to African and Asian nationalities. The tone and lexicon are mainly positive about the initiatives towards the welcoming of migrants. The word ‘help’ is used often, which sometimes gives (without willing giving it) a condescending and passive image of migrants or African people being target by ‘solidarity events’ (the subjects of verbs of action process are often local people).


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CASE STUDY The ‘marrainage’ project As part of a project “Migration”, the MIR carries a marrainage action: a French woman to support women of foreign origin (migrant women) with responsibilities in the public arena (political, economic, trade, health etc). The Mentorship Action allows women who have a career plan to be accompanied by other women in responsibility. Participants cosign a “Charter of Mentorship” with MIR, which ensures good action. This is a true, caring relationship at an important moment in the life of any young woman: the ‘godmother’ accompanies/supports ‘goddaughter’ in opening doors, by the availability of networks, personal advice. The ‘goddaughter’ brings a fresh look at the area where it wishes to conduct the project. The most interesting aspects of this project are:

** Intercultural dimension of mentorship of two women with different backgrounds who have to work together.

** The concept of support and reciprocity. The mentorship is not defined as a helping relationship, but as a relationship where both protagonists are active.

** Reflection committed to the empowerment of women.

NATIONAL MEETING In France, Intercultura organized two events at the end of November 2009 with the participation of partner associations from Spain and Romania. The first one was a seminar at Rennes University with students in intercultural issues and a representative from the International House of Rennes. The second one was a meeting with Dinan community at the Foyer des Jeunes Travailleurs. The participants in Dinan were local people, migrants involved in the survey, local journalists, department politicians and clerks involved in the issue of immigration. The scope of organizing this events was to use the presentation of the research and study case and media analysis as an reason to discuss migration and interculturality in our community, about stereotypes, the concept of “integration” in France and, above all, in our community.


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GREECE | hEllás

NATIONAL SITUATION During the last two decades, Greece has changed from a migrant sender to a migrant receiving country, hosting immigrants mainly from the Balkans and Eastern Europe. Along with other Southern European member states, Greece has faced and will face this phenomenon. Immigration is today one of the most important challenges that Greek society has to deal with. Greek society has been significantly transformed and is still undergoing a transition period; it is facing the economic and cultural tensions of globalisation and EU enlargement, and at the same time has become host to nearly a million immigrants in less than a decade. Even though Greece was still one of the less-developed states of the European Union during the 1990’s, it received the highest percentage of immigrants in relation to its labor force. Many factors explain this transformation; these include the geographic position of Greece, with extensive coastlines and borders that are easy to cross, creating an eastern ‘gate’ for the European Union. In addition, the rapid economic changes that narrowed the economic and social distance from the Northern European countries following the integration of Greece into the European Union play also an important role. In parallel with economic development, the improved living standards and higher levels of education reached by young people have led most Greeks to reject low-status and low-income jobs. Meanwhile, both the large size of the informal, family-based economy, and the seasonal nature of industries like tourism, agriculture, and construction, have created demand for a flexible labor force, independent of trade union practices and legislation. It appears that in a socio-political perspective, immigrant participation in public life is limited, as the vast majority is still struggling to obtain basic rights, while ethnic associations are few and relatively small. The overall limited participation of immigrants in public life is also restricted by problems regarding the access to administration and the long bureaucratic processes. Nevertheless, NGO’s and other organisations raise concern regarding the preferential path to citizenship available to individuals of Greek origin.


Today, immigrants are showing signs of growing integration in Greek society, as many of them have started to settle, form communities, have a job, and interact actively with the local society. There are, however, still many gaps to fill to attain a full integration in a cultural, social and economic perspective.

SURVEY Greek feelings towards immigrants are overwhelmingly negative. In a country of less than 11 million people, almost one million immigrants is an excessively high number and it is perceived as threatening to the Greek identity and the cultural homogeneity. Immigrants are not only socially excluded from Greek society, but are also confronted with national negative sentiment. The age of the target group we interviewed varied from 17 to 50 years old. As far as social collective imagination was concerned, one can say that in our research immigration is mainly connected with disadvantaged situations, like poverty, desire of getting economic and social conditions improvement, need of escaping from a risky situation in the countries of origin (refugees asking for asylum etc). A large proportion of the people who filled in the questionnaires admitted, or appeared to have some kind of prejudices about immigrants, a phenomenon mainly connected to the indifference and/or the lack of knowledge concerning cultural story of immigrant communities. The main fear clearly expressed and connected with those prejudices, is the threat of personal security. That is, immigrants are perceived as a risk in Greek citizensâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; everyday life as they threat their personal security and prosperity. However, a certain degree of positive attitude was detected and it is mainly connected with the will of people to help for the resolution of immigration/ integration issues. Some solutions that were proposed by interviewed to overcome problems connected with integration were: Change of the media attitudes towards immigrants, strengthen of intercultural education and dialogue (above all for young people and children), human rights respect sensitization and information (refugees, asylum seekers), the creation of a communication stream between local and immigrant communities, and of common spaces to support comparison and mutual knowledge and exchange. The main results we can draw from the research conducted is that today there are growing signs, coming especially from the younger generations of increased sensitivity towards minority and immigrant issues, of increasing acceptance of diversity in Greece, and a tendency to give voice to minorities themselves as well as to NGOs active in the field. Critical accounts of the poor social and economic conditions of specific minorities and immigrants are given, and related state policy is criticised.


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MEDIA ANALYSE Newspapers During the research period, in Athens Voice (AV), an Athenian weekly free newspaper, there were several articles related to the fields of interest of the present study. The articles found could be divided in two categories, one being the articles advertising multicultural events held in Athens and the second being the ones presenting the contribution of immigrants in the development of Athenian lifestyle and urban culture. In general, articles of this topic covered the main page of AV quite often, they were politically correct, always with positive images attached, trying to emphasize on the contribution of the immigrants in Greek society, the daily problems they face and the limited provision of services offered by the Greek authorities. The articles issued in Macedonia, a daily newspaper published in Northern Greece; during the research period related to the subjects of our study were 9 in total. They were mainly information giving on current issues preoccupying the Greek society, with main focus on things happening in Northern Greece. In general, the articles presented were using politically correct vocabulary, with neutral tone, if not positive for the immigrants whenever opinion of the author was expressed. Blog The Blog choice was based on the following criteria: observe and analyze nonprofessional opinions coming from the society and observe and analyze different social attitudes toward immigration from different areas of the country. Blog monitoring reveals a very bad attitude towards immigrants in general. It is very clear that many people are scared of physical attacks from immigrants, of robbery episodes. Something that is especially valid for Athens is that the feeling of insecurity makes people not to hang out in some specific areas of the city. They feel that some areas of their city “are lost” and are not anymore “belonging to Greek people”. The perception common people have developed about immigrants is generally negative, usually they perceive immigrants as dangerous invaders. http://parapolitiki.blogspot.com TV News channels Sky News Greece, Sky News World, ET One (Greek national channel), ET Two (Greek national channel), ET Three (Greek national channel) were chosen based on the following criteria: observe and analyze both quality and quantity of the news; observe and analyze newscasters attitudes in dealing with the topic, as well as image trend related to immigration and immigrants news; TV news model is mainly based on chronicle oriented information. The MEDIA provide mainly crime


news involving immigrants. There was very rarely news discussing the immigrants’ economic and social conditions, the Greek legal regulation in this field and integration issues. Worldwide MEDIA usually have a different approach about immigration issues; it is more connected with political matters concerning for example. Generally what we can detect from our investigation is a general fear toward immigrants created by different factors acting in the same time. Media has a huge influence in creating social insecurity toward immigrants and therefore has a very negative impact on integration dynamics development. The negative character of the media coverage of immigrants is partly responsible for this negative perception of the public opinion. In newspapers, it is not unusual to see cartoons portraying the immigrants as criminals or read headlines such as “the perpetrator is more likely to be a foreigner”, or “the Albanian Mafia is once again in action”. From their very first arrival in Greece, immigrants were stigmatised as ‘criminals’ by the Greek media, and became stereotyped as ‘dangerous’. Concerning the characteristics of immigrants coming from Media, in the majority of the cases they described a scary framework; immigrants are often presented as dangerous (criminals, persons with bad and impolite attitudes towards women etc). It is interesting to note, however, that over the last couple of years, popular television programmes, serials and reality shows have been including immigrants in their casting. More importantly though, small television channels, such as Kanali 10 provide news in Russian and Albanian and certain radio stations in Attica are made available to the immigrant communities (such as national broadcasting ERA, or Radio 98.4, etc). These trends, however, characterise the moderate and progressive segment of the press and television channels. Nevertheless, minority or immigrant rights are never on the media agenda as collective political rights. The coverage concerns mainly the improvement of the living or working conditions, as well as their access to education or work. To sum up, we can conclude that despite the overwhelmingly negative perception of the immigrants in Greek society by the Public Opinion and the Media, there seems to be at present a few positive prospects, from the interaction of immigrants with locals in everyday life as well as the slow integration in media coverage. This constitutes potentially a sign of a subsequent, however slow-moving acceptance that could lead to integration.


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CASE STUDY Athens Voice 29/06/2009, in the 132nd Primary school of Gkrava a teacher has been prosecuted because of creating a humanitarian school. Available at: http://www.athensvoice.gr/data/pdf/AV_263.pdf This case study examines the situation raised at the 132nd Primary School of Gkrava that developed after dismissal of the General Director of the school who had initiated multicultural activities in order to facilitate educational process and integration of immigrant students and their parents. The dismissal and prosecution of the General Director occurred on the basis of accusations that she was illegally providing the school space for educational activities (teaching of mother tongue of the students) without the permission from the Ministry of Education. The educational system in Greece deals with two major problems. The first is the issue of the immigrantsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lack of official documents. Even today, after two decades, the modifications in the migration policy and the immigrant population exceeding 10% of the total population, too many immigrants remain under a regime of uncertainty and lack of permanent status. The second central problem, influencing the educational policy towards immigrant students, is the lack of adequate data concerning both the total number of the immigrant population, and the studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; population specifically. The number of immigrant children in Greek state schools has increased at a phenomenal degree since the early 1990s, although even basic data is still argued. In many Greek state schools, immigrant children form as much as 40% of the total student population. However, there is still no intercultural education, or Immigrant Minority Language Instruction. This situation leads to an increase in the immigrantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s family permanency, as the children learn only Greek and do not have the possibility return to their country of origin, if they wish to. So, new immigrants from high human capital families aiming to overcome their marginalization fitted in, even more so than the native population. The national education system has undergone important changes but still struggles to find a new orientation towards multiculturalism together with more effective and efficient learning in secondary and higher education. Access to all levels of schooling is an essential indicator to social integration of immigrants. Special classes in the Greek language are needed for most immigrant children and the degree of success of migrant children is central in evaluating the integration progress, however relative data is missing.


To sum our reflections during the project 4:Miss You, Rope! up we can conclude, despite the often encountered severe problems of integration, the general picture seems to be improving. The main problem connected with integration is intolerance and lack of knowledge about other cultures. The unavoidable interaction between immigrants and the local population is leading to the unavoidable result of the breakdown of cultural barriers and prejudices. It has been noticed that through interaction, individuals revise their opinions and by forming social bonds the existing stereotypes are likely to alter. Overall, the fundamental conclusion is that immigrants are facing conditions of exclusion in Greece, however, during the last few years certain important changes have taken place. The full social, cultural, economic and political integration of immigrants is subject to time.


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NATIONAL MEETING 4:Miss You, Rope! Intercultural dialogue on the context of immigration issues Place: Athens, Greece. Participants: Romania, Austria and France. Date: 23-25 November 2009. 23rd November Morning Sightseeing of Athens and exploration of the beauty of the city! Athens Acropolis, New Acropolis Museum, the traditional quarters of Monastiraki and Plaka. Afternoon Brainstorming near the sea! Analysis and in-depth preparation for the intercultural dialogue the following day. 24th November Morning Sightseeing of the alternative route of Athens and the diversity of its population, designed by the team of ELIX. Athens, like many other cities of the worldwide, is much more than a historical city with a splendid past. Today, its history is written by people from diverse cultural and national backgrounds living in its streets. Let’s see it! Afternoon-Evening Cultural night! Sharing is live! Be ready for a night in which our cultures will be interlaced through the typical food and the music of our place of origin. Our differences make us richer! 25th November Morning Round table on “Intercultural dialogue on the context of immigration issues” 12.00-14.00: In auditorium “Antonis Tritsis”, Akadimias 50, Athens. Program Presentation of the Project “4: Miss You Rope” (Elena Papalabrou),Greek Case (Maria Chalari), French Case (Aude Etrillard), Romanian Case (Nicole Robciuc), Intercultural learning activity (Mina Anandiadou), Discussion


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ITALY | ITALIA

NATIONAL SITUATION The phenomenon of immigration with its start around the 1960s is relatively new in Italy. Between 1876 and 1976 more than 24 Million Italians emigrated, but after the economical miracle many of them returned to their home country to retrieve their past and to build up a better future. Today many Italians have already forgot their past as emigrants and they are not ready to help the immigrants of today in Italy. The war between Kosovo and Albania was the reason for the arrival, in July 1990, of the first boats of Albanian refugees to the Italian coast. From this day on, the landing of the boats full of people did not stop. The Istat, National Institute of Statistics in Italy informed that in 2008 the regular resident Albanians were 401.949. Beside Albanian citizens the most immigrants of today come from Eastern Europe and Africa. In 2008, Istat counted 797.997 regular immigrants from Africa, 551.985 from the Asian continent and 294.550 from the American continent. This number includes the regular resident immigrants but doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t include the clandestine migrants which arrive and land every day in Italy. The 2nd July 2009 the decree (decree requiring the approval of Parliament) called Pacchetto di Sicurezza, which means Sicurity Package, was approved. This decree defines the clandestine immigration as a crime and foresees, among other changes, an amendment between 5.000 and 10.000 Euro for the foreigners who enter Italy illegally. Moreover, the government extended the time of stay for the clandestine without identity in the Centres of Temporary Permanenze, renamed Centre of Idendification and Expulsion for a maximum of 180 days. During this time, they are held in this centres like prisoners waiting for an answer to their request for a resident permit which often is negative. However, there are more and more movements, organisations and campaigns fighting for the rights of immigrants in Italy, which are not as respected as they should be. For example, since 2006 a network called G2 Seconda Generazione which started as a small group of people, who share their problems, are now the biggest network in Italy to help and improve the rights for the second generation of immigrants. The second generation are the children of immigrant families who have lived in Italy since they were born. Even though they feel totally Italian and act and behave like Italians, they are not


allowed for examle to vote, to apply for jobs which give them a constant feeling of not being respected as human beeing. A good example of the positive and, above all, active movement for the rights of the immigrants and the second generation in Italy will be on 1st March 2010 “1 marzo una giornata senza di noi” translated in English “1st March one day without us”. A national strike is planned to demonstrate the value of the work immigrants do in their local communities and for whole Italy. [Numbers gained from www.istat.it]

SURVEY The Italian survey was developed with the help of local volunteers in the southern regions of Puglia and Campania. It was not easy to submit the questionnaire either to immigrants nor to Italians. Many of the immigrants wanted a better understanding of the goal and the objectives of the questionnaire before they accepted to fill it out. They seemed to be afraid and they did not want to express their opinion to people they didn’t know. Italians, instead, were not really interested in the topic and they showed that they didn’t like the topic. At the end of the two months of work, the volunteers collected 200 questionnaires, half male and half female, 50% aged between 17 and 29 years, 80% employed and 20% unemployed.

→→ In Italy, 20% of the interviewed persons declared that they had problems and conflicts with strangers before. The main cause of the origin of the conflict, the same as in the other countries where the survey took place, was misunderstanding. This misunderstanding comes from the lack of information and knowledge about the other cultures. Results of the Italian questionnaire showed that to improve the conflict situation and to guarantee a future with less misunderstanding it is important to strengthen: Places like social centres, organisations, places of aggregation where local people can meet foreigners. Where they can pass time together, do and organize things together and get to know each other’s cultures so stereotypes and prejudices can be broken. Education The school should give the opportunity to favour knowledge about other cultures. Learning from small up what is living in an intercultural context, in the opinion of many people, as adult the people won’t have racist attitudes and opinions.


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Social support for immigrants Many of the interviewed persons suggested strengthening the bureaucratic support for immigrants and to provide psychological and practical support for them. Help for finding lodging, health assistance or simply to help them meet people to build up their own social relations, could help the integration of the immigrants a great deal.

→→ When asked the question Do you find the news about other cultures in mass media sufficient? 46% of the interviewed people answered rather insufficient which is alarming data which shows the opinion of the people is very strong.

MEDIA ANALYSE The Italian Group analyzed three daily newspapers called La Gazzetta del Mezzogiorno, Il Mattino di Napoli and Corriere del Mezzogiorno local edition Lecce. During the two months of work, the group found 80 articles in the Gazzetta, 30 in the Mattino and just 10 in the Corriere, that reported news, positive and negative, about the topic analyzed. The negative recurrent terms in these articles were for example the wave of immigration, the problem of immigration, the fear or sorrow of immigration. Moreover, in the Italian newspapers you find these days is often the binomial immigration and security. The information which the local newspapers give on the topic of immigration and integration together with the chosen terminology doesn’t help to spread a positive message about immigration. From our survey and the media analysis, the comments and stories of the interviewed persons show how strong the media influences the opinions of common people about the topic of immigration.

CASE STUDY Internazionale is the name of the only Italian magazine which has, in every edition, one section written from journalists with foreign roots living in Italy, called “Italieni”. In the first years of publication the magazine reported on articles which were already published in international newspapers. In 2007, the editors decided to dedicate the section to migrant writers, letting them recall facts and stories, and their personal experiences, with their point of view about Italy, and to call it “Italieni”. In 2009, Internazionale modified the pages and introduced, amongst other changes, photographies from the new Italians which display foreign citizens who had moved to Italy.


The reactions of the readers are in general very positive, but there were not missing out controverters, because often the authors also touch delicate topics (second generation, racism, etc). [Francesca Sibani - Internazionale] Many other Italian newspapers published articles from foreign journalists, but the thing that makes the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Italieniâ&#x20AC;? section so poignant is that it was allowed to be a permanent fixture in the magazine and on the same level of importance alongside other contexts.

National Meeting in Italy. Local Volunteers Erdit and Sante.

National Meeting in Italy. Vasile (Romania), Egita (Lativia) and Daniel (Spain).


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NATIONAL MEETING The Italian National Meeting, hosted in Altamura and Matera, took place in the middle of November and was attended by representatives of partner organisations from Latvia, Romania and Spain. During the three days, the team worked on the divulgation of the results and gave visibility to the project. The first public event was the radio programme where was spoken about what happened during one year of project, what kind of results we gained and what we hope to achieve in the future. On the next day, we organized a press conference with local journalists and, to get in direct contact with the local community, a social initiative, called Free Hug, where people give hugs for solidarity. This was an opportunity to chat with the people, talking about their opinion of immigration.

National Meeting in Italy. Local Volunteers J端rgen and Erdit with Daniel (Spain).


lat via


Latvia | Latvija

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NATIONAL SITUATION There are about 13,000 immigrants permanently living in Latvia. Despite this large number, a recent study on migration issues showed that there is actually little understanding within society about what immigration constitutes. Common stereotypes are prevailing. The studies carried out within the framework of 4:Miss You, Rope! addressed 412 persons, of which are 43% men and 57% women, from different age groups, origins and in various Latvian regions.

SURVEY During the two months of research with the questionnaires we got to understand many different things, here we would like to share our knowledge. A total of 20 volunteers carried out the study. They spoke with 412 interviewees from all Latvian regions Zemgale, Latgale, Kurzeme and Vidzeme. Among the other respondents were various nationalities â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Portuguese, Estonians, Ukrainians, Poles, Germans, Armenians, Jews, Italian, Austrian, Lithuanians, Greeks and Swedes. 45.2% of respondents have higher education, 41.9% secondary and 11.2% in primary education. Nationalities of interviewees

84%

8%

3%

Latvians

Russians

Other

412 total


One third of respondents reported to have, at least on a daily basis, experience of other cultures. This could be suggested that a large part of society does not make any difference between the status of the large predominantly Russian minority and new coming immigrants. The studies revealed that one third of the respondents believe that the reason behind immigration is thought to be a looming conflict caused by social, economic or security problems in the immigrant’s country of origin.

→→ Asking the interviewees about their relationship with the term immigrant. The response on the question What is an immigrant? could be categorized into two groups: – a person from another country (34.4%) – the person who, for various reasons, went to another country (7.9%). Also, several negative associations with immigrants were observed, such as racism and cheap labour. Common cultural misinterpretation and communication problems are believed to be the main cause of misunderstanding leading to conflict situations, according to the respondents. Most intercultural dialogue takes place during public music events, festivals and sport competitions, the interviewees responded. The main source of obtaining information on intercultural events is obtained through Television (74.9 per cent), followed by Radio, the Press and the Internet. At the same time, one third of the respondents of the questionnaire believe that the media plays an important role in the dissemination and contribution of information on other cultures. But half of the respondents could not recall the last thing they observed in the media concerning immigration issues. Only 6.2% mentioned issues of Latvians emigrating to other countries; some respondents recalled news related to Somali refugees, the situation in the labour market and a wave of immigrants entering Latvia. However, most respondents could recall the more vivid news coverage on Latvians immigrating to Cuba, hatred on Russian speakers, riots in France and immigration from Africa. A total of 67.2% of respondents acknowledged that their future is likely to be within the country where they are currently living. A quarter of the respondents consider themselves as potential emigrants. Remarkably, only a quarter of the respondents feel that they are European citizens. Half of the respondents consider that the European Union’s institutions should guarantee human rights and integration and intercultural dialogue. 36.8% of respondents consider that Latvia has an extended problem with sextourism.


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Media analyze Additionally, a two month regional media review revealed that information on intercultural activities and interviews with immigrants are rare. Articles in the local and regional media do cover immigration issues from a neutral perspective through small contributions. During the period of observation, no in-depth news coverage on immigrations could be observed.

CASE STUDY Case number 1 A Foreign Correspondent from Germany five years ago was invited to come over to Latvia and observe and write about political, social and economic issues that occurred at that time. In his opinion Latvia is a tremendous beautiful country despite the historical burden. In Latvians opinion it is great to hear that a foreign person realizes that Latvia has observed tremendous change during a short time and sees itself as a victim, especially in past. For these five years, he was well integrated into society and has good networks with the Latvian, non Latvian and foreign communities in Latvia. He finds it hard that Latvians and non Latvian citizens have a stalwart on presumptive stereotypes about each other (which are far from reality). In his opinion, in Latvia people are too busy with themselves, compared with what he was used to in Germany. About social and cultural life he said: “While big events rely heavily on state funding, individual cultural and social managers have problems with establishing themselves in Latvia and often choose to go aboard.” Moreover he is in the opinion that Latvia’s health system undergoes one of the biggest, yet long overdue reforms of its past. A mixture of short sighted investments, wrongly allocated funds, corruption, ineffective management and the lack of a clear vision for the future brought Latvia’s health care into a dire situation. Case number 2 A Mexican boy married a Latvian woman and they divorced but they have a daughter. She lives with her mother in the countryside of Latvia. Of course, the father wanted to be with his daughter but Europe accepts Mexicans for only three months in, three months out, three months in … just like Mexican Europeans. So he went to the immigration office and asked about staying longer because of his daughter. They said that he could be a resident and stay permanently in Latvia if he was married. But as he


is now divorced, only just having his baby here, that is not possible. What he can do is request an extension of an extra three months. But he has to do the paper work, wait one or two months for the answer and then finally they might let him stay. But that’s only for three months, the next time he wants to stay other three extra months he has to go through the same process again. So, there is so much trouble to go through to get that paper work that he chooses to live here for just those three months at a time. Luckily he is an entrepreneur and he can afford to live here without working. If he wanted to work here, he couldn’t do because of this permit. The three things in Latvia which are unacceptable for him are pessimism, corruption and long winters. He has a good social life here; he thinks Latvians around him are really kind just they don’t smile much. The only barrier for him is the language, he doesn’t speak Latvian, but his communication ways are English or Spanish.

NATIONAL MEETING From 6th to 9th November the international study 4: Miss You, Rope! Latvian National action, took place in Riga, and the main aim was to publish the study results, to draw public attention to immigration issues and intercultural dialogue, as well as to promote tolerance in the public. Loesje During the first day about 20 people strengthened their creative mood in a “Loesje” workshop and enthusiastically presented the richness of inter-cultural dialogue to draw attention to immigration related issues. The workshop motivated creative writing and helped people start to think about immigration on a meta-level. First, the participants produced Loesje posters with which they hit the streets to find appropriate places that would link the content of the posters with the surrounding environment. During the photo sessions, by-passers were involved in receiving informed about ongoing activities and the project.


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It was interesting to watch people’s reactions when they saw the posters, and the corresponding texts, we also asked them to take photos. [Viktorija Zenkova] The participants included members of the NGO RED, youth from the Bolderāja youth centre in Latvia, immigrants and visitors from partner countries of the projects from UK, France and Italy. The participants created various texts, both in English and Latvian language. Some examples include If God came from heaven, would he need a Visa?, In Passports will not longer be written the Nationalities, I am a Human, is in my passport, Why did MacDonald fit, but I not?, Different blood, one colour, Racism makes a border between you and society, 365 days, a year to be tolerant, as well as many others. Meeting with young people The festive activities concluded at Riga’s 19th high school, where the project and the results of the previous day’s activities were presented to high school students. To draw more attention to intercultural dialogue issues and more engaged students, a game was played to realize, how it is to be foreigner and to be in strange culture.


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ROMANIA | România

NATIONAL SITUATION The working area of the organisation AREAS is the North Eastern part of Romania (Region Moldova â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Suceava, Botosani). From the research conducted within the 4:Miss You, Rope! project we put into question the situation of immigrants from Romania, trying to provide answers to the following questions: ** Who are they? ** In which way are they contributing to the welfare? ** Are their rights respected and what policies should be promote by the Romanian state for better life and to create a harmonious intercultural dialogue? In Romania, the legal framework governing immigration is permanently changing and not always clear and coherent. This is because of the absence of clear government policy which should establish the basic principles of this area, as well in terms of urgency and harmonization with EU standards; the whole legislative process is as alert as it is inconsistent. Immigration policy has two basic theses: ** The state has permanent control, continuous and not legitimate (only the so-called supreme interest of the state) of the population movement into, from and within the national territory. ** Foreigners in Romania are a source of income from the state budget, they improve labour force etc.

Research in Romania. Nicoleta and Vasile with a local volunteer.


In the Romanian legislation are fixed the duties and the regolations about foreigners. The Government sets annually by legislative act the number of work permits that may be issued for foreigners, the number of seats in educational establishments or institutions that may be available for foreigners and time limits until they can enter to any kind of institution of education. Other fixed regolations:

** The amount of appropriations necessary for lodging, maintenance and accommodation facilities as well as those for health care or hospitalization.

** The amount of appropriate means both for maintenance during their stay, as well as for returning to the country of origin or transit to another state. Government places foreigners in two categories: ** EU Member States and other economically developed countries. ** Citizens of states with â&#x20AC;&#x153;immigration potentialâ&#x20AC;?. This categorisation of immigrants in Romania is a new important elemnt of public policy which is mentioned only recently. The second category derives from old communist policy of sharing the foreigners as people belonging or not belonging to socialist friendly states. On the other hand, this division cannot affect the economic interest of many people from countries of the second category. This element leads to tensions between Romania and certain countries which has been collaborating for many years: closer political, cultural or economic good, such as Turkey, India and Serbia. The social integration of foreigners is first and foremost a matter of regulating their stay in the country where they have found shelter and that regulators should consider all aspects of their social or economic wellbeing.

SURVEY The team of AREAS Suceava interviewed 120 people in the two months of research. The main occupation of the intervieews were students, businessmen, doctors, biologists, housewives. The interviewed foreigners answered with 73,2% that they are feeling good and that they do have local friends. Other 15% said that they do feel discriminated. It should be mentioned that an extensive discussion unfolded around the topic of moldavian citizens in Romania, with a meeting of different points of view, pleasant and less pleasant. The situation of immigrants from Romania told through the eyes of


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immigrants: Lack of consistency of the system, insufficient coordination among institutions involved in the migration management and administrative system are some of the problems faced by foreigners in Romania [Immigrant from Republic of Moldova - Lasi, 7th November 2009]. The opportunities for integration in the Romanian society are constructed in a continuous process, sustained effort on the part of immigrants, as well as the host society: The situation in Romania is in a continuous process of changing, largely positive and who will come from now on it will be not so bad, will suffer less. They should try to be patient. On the other hand, if they are not strong, they cannot survive here. [Immigrant from South Korea] We would like to add to our research and study a passage from the Soros Foundation, which specifies that: Language barriers, cultural differences, lack of social relationships in Romania the unrepresented Unions and the absence of a set of information relating to the rights of the eligible employees in Romania, make foreign workers represent an easy target for civil servants / employers who intend to take advantage of the immigration status [Immigrant in Romania: Perspectives and Risks, Soros Foundation Romania] One conclusion of the 4: Miss You, Rope! project shows that immigrant participation in social and cultural development process is quite low, but it is more visible in the economic plan. This is the reason why immigrants are less present in public discourses, and when mentioned, the image contour is rather negative. Another conclusion reflects about the information needs of immigrants from Romania about rights, obligations and opportunities of their integration. In the survey, our organization involved three volunteers. The reactions of interviewees which the volunteers faced were divided. There were people who completed the questionnaires quickly without many questions but also others who said, “no time”, “I rush”, “please no” etc. Especially immigrants wondered a lot why we were doing this research and how it should help.


MEDIA ANALYSE We chose to analyze a regional newspaper, since they are read a lot in the area of Suceava. Therefore we chose the daily Crai Nou and the Monitorul de Suceava, which is published in a big draft with articles on various topics like culture, sport, politics, etc. Moreover was monitored The Weekly of Radauti, which is a newspaper that belongs to Radauti city where it is possible to meet many immigrants because of the Centre for Refugees. In all these papers we did not find many articles on immigration. The media analysis took place from 1st May to 30th June 2009, we worked on all three newspapers in the same time. Some examples of titles we found during the research: – More and more requests for political asylum in Romania [Monitorul de Suceava] – ADRA, promoter of integration of immigrants in Romania [Crai Nou] – Asylum seekers in Suceava, trained in social integration [The Weekly of Radauti¶ The articles were medium size, never on the first page of the newspaper, rather on page 3 or 4 and containing about 250-300 characters. The contents corresponded with the titles, and in almost all cases they were accompanied by a photo. Articles were written basicly on press releases that were accompanied by the opinion of journalists. Regarding the terminology, we found the term waves in the article about political asylum in Romania, like this The immigrants come in Romania in waves. We conclude that although it’s not written in a negative way regarding the immigrants, there aren’t many articles in the local and regional newspapers referring to the topic. which means automaticly that there is not enough information among the local community.

CASE STUDY Our case study has been inspired by the media, because we found many articles on the topic political asylum in Romania and the social integration of immigrants. AREAS got in touch with two local NGOs, called Diana - Charitable Society and ADRA. ADRA had recently a concern in the development of tools for social integration of immigrants. We noticed that Romania is concerned to offer reinforced support to immigrants. The statistics of the two NGOs have shown that there are approximately 3.000 applications annually for political asylum, and in Romania there are six centres for refugees organized in all regions of the country. This should show in conclusion that there is money invested in the integration of immigrants and it pays special attention to intercultural dialogue. The two NGOs have created a study guide about intercultural communication, a support platform which include also guidelines on rights, obligations and opportunities of immigrants edited and published in five languages: English, Persian, Russian, Hindi and Romanian. www.imigrant.filantropicadiana.ro


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NATIONAL MEETING The national meeting took place from 5th to 8th November 2009 at Suceava and Lasi. Participants hosted for this event in the frame of the project 4:Miss You, Rope! were the Elena from the greek organisation ELIX,Tomas from the spanish organisation COLEGA and Petya from the bulgarian organisation Youth Initiatives from the Rose Valley. The National Meeting Agenda 06.11.2009 Meeting with Romanian students, Moldavians and foreigners of Stefan cel Mare University of Suceava. In this activity we discussed the subject of intercultural dialogue and the project participants had the chance to talk about their experiences during the year of project and to listen to the immigrants. For the successful implementation of this activity, AREAS involved and collaborated with two student organizations GIRB (The Initiative Group of the Romanians in Bassarabia) and ASUS (Student Association of Universities Suceava). The activities during this day took place working in a free manner between the representatives of 4:Miss You, Rope! and foreign and Romanian students, who attended the meeting. After a debate of three hours we concluded that media and government plays an important role to influence the population namely that what is written in newspapers can be wrong most of the times and disseminated to the population. In the afternoon of the first day, the representatives of 4: Miss You, Rope! visited the Radauti Refugee Centre, where we had the opportunity to share ideas about immigration with residents of the centre. 07.11.2009 The 4: Miss You, Rope! representatives had a meeting with immigrants in a city called Lasi. Unfortunately, at this meeting werenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t many immigrants present, although several invitations were sent out. However, we have reached the objectives of the action. We believe that AREAS managed to allow participants to reflect more on this subject, following the objectives of the projects research and the importance of intercultural dialogue.


esp a単a


Spain | España

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General Evaluation of the Project It is about an innovative initiative that offers the chance of sharing and comparing with other European associations the experiences concerning the fight against discriminations connected to the ethnic, cultural, religious and/or geographic origin. This study has had a clearly positive impact inside our own organization, COLEGAS, because the work carried out permitted the volunteers from Jaén, Madrid, Valencia and Almería to confront their ideas about immigration when they went on the streets to ask for people opinions. Contemporarily the execution of this research has allowed to us to promote reflection about migrations and social prejudices in the street as much as in other associations and also throughout mass media. This project tries to encourage media and institutions to pay attention to the way they work with information related to migratory movements not favouring situations of exclusion or discrimination.

SURVEY The Spanish survey was realized in the City of Valencia, the City of Almería, the City of Jaén and the towns Linares, Andújar and Úbeda (Province of Jaén). We tried to maintain the balance of sex-gender during the whole survey and Moreover we made the effort to interview a significant number of immigrants (about 30% of the interviewed people) and of young people (about50%). The interviewed population, 430 people, correspond to the following profile:

Gender

Age

Origin

52,6%

47,4%

woman

man

430 total

45%

25%

16%

8% 5%

17-28

29-38

40-49

50-64

27,6% Immigrant

72,4% Non immigrant

+65


The reaction of the youngest ones usually were more opened and determined to collaborate, meanwhile the older part of the population used to reject to answer when they listened the word “immigration”. Immigrant population in general used to be more kind answering. It was also usual to find women apologizing and didn’t want to answer. A lot of immigrants showed themselves doubtful in the beginning, because they thought they were not able to answer. Results of the Survey The word respect is very common in the surveys, what shows there exists a clear conscience about the relationship between migration and rights. The most of the interviewed used to have on their minds the image of rowing boats, fundamentally due to the tragic images that mass media keep showing when talking about migration.

→→ From the questionnaire it was clearly outstanding to understand that mass media transmit a negative image about immigrants connecting them in a very common way to violence, aggressions, crime, murders…

→→ At the question where interviewees need to tell a joke which they know about other cultures, most of the population had in mind those ones related more to the colour of the skin than to the culture or personality. An example: What does a black man in the snow?… a perfect target.

→→ Strategies: education and dialogue Most of population trusts dialogue and communication as the main ways to fight against racism and to make intercultural exchanges easier. Education is the second answer most mentioned within this field.

→→ Concept of mobility: essential Mobility is an essential word for the interview persons. A lot of people consider themselves European by the fact that there is no borders inside the European Union and because it is possible to travel to other countries without Visa.

→→ One of every five people interviewed declared not knowing if they feel European, despite of the fact of living in Spain and have in mind to keep living in Spain for many years. Most of the people associate being Spanish to be born in Spain, and not with other concepts related to the colour of the skin or culture.


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Specific question in Spain Colega Jaén introduced a specific question related to sexual minorities, with the aim of making visible and to discover the relationships between the migratory topics and sexual minorities.

→→ More homosexual immigrants: in Spain it is very significant to highlight that the number of homosexual immigrants is higher of other European countries, due to the level of legal recognition of the rights for person with different sexual orientation.

→→ Rights’ equality for homosexuals: 96% of the polled consider that homosexuals should have the same rights as the whole population.

→→ Personal knowledge = more global vision: one of three people knows a homosexual immigrant, and the vast majority think homosexual persecution in the immigrants’ own countries has influenced the migratory processes. This shows us that people who know homosexual immigrants normally are aware of the vital difficulties homosexuals have to front in a lot of other countries around the world.

National Meeting in Spain. Preparation of the Street Action.


MEDIA ANALYSIS During the research in Spain we analyzed the newspapers Diario Jaèn. Which is the main newspaper in the province of Jaén because of its level of diffusion and its influence on social and political life. Diario Jaén facilitates daily information about politics, sports, local events ecc. counting on around 80 pages, black and white colour in A3 format. During the months of May and June, volunteers from Colega Jaén have been the ones in charge of reading the newspaper and extract those articles and news related to migrations and interculturalism. During the month of July in Colega Jaén the articles were analysed. We found an average of one article per two days about immigration and interculturalism. It happened that we could read two articles per week, whereas some days several news were accumulated in the same edition. The average size of the articles was half page, although we could find articles oscillating between thirty words and two pages. Articles related to interculturalism and immigration were included mostly in the section about opinion, in local and national sections and sometimes also in the culture section. Neither interculturalism nor migration are mentioned on sport and economical sections. It is usual to find great coherence, although in some cases there is a tendence to dramatize and exaggerate with the apparent objective of attracting the attention of the reader, like cases of shipwreck or swindle). Most of the articles are related to events or news occurred in Spain or in other countries from the European Union, whereas people mentioned usually come from countries out of the EU, above all Morocco, Romania and Latin America. We could not find articles written by immigrants, only written by local journalists. In the composition there are few mentions and also scarce references to personal experiences. Talking about the terminology the use of works like cooperation, coexistence, interculturalism, solidarity and coeducation is outstanding. We found that it is completely avoided to use terms like “invasion” to mention the migratory processes. However, sometimes the word avalanche is employed. Most of the articles come accompanied of an image. In very few cases, articles come together with statistical tables. Images normally show pain, scenes about hard jobs, police and the queues at the administration offices. In few cases positive images are presented, with scholars and smiling immigrant people.


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CONCLUSIONS After having completed the study we can conclude that media maintain, and sometimes create, stereotypes about immigrant population and their lives. These stereotyped images are accepted by population without any doubt and spread consequently in ordinary life. We can confirm that those who know immigrants better have a more realistic point of view of the migratory process and their motivations. At the same time those who donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know immigrant population tend to generalize and base their own answers on stereotypes, and on the ideas which mass media show them. Recommandations to Mass Media To give immigrants the chance to express themselves. It is very important to ask immigrant people about their vital experiences as far as to reflect the human side of migrations. Contemporarily, immigrants should have the chance of becoming journalists to include their point of view on migratory issues and other matters. Paying attention to the use of the words and avoid negative expressions. It is fundamental to avoid expressions that project an unreal and at the same time negative image of the migratory process. This could be done by not specifying the migratory origin on news related to crime, unless media decide to specify the Spanish origin each time a crime is committed by a Spanish person. Making immigrant population visible in every social area. It is essential to mention the immigrant origin of those who suppose a social referent or an example of good work or cohabitation, as in a lot of cases in economy business or even sports, despite it is not frequently mentioned.

National Meeting in Spain. Street Action: Free Hugs.


Recommendations to authorities and public institutions

** Education is, without any doubt, the best and first tool to face racism, xenophobia and other kinds of discrimination. That is why efforts should be reinforced including topics like interculturalism at schools and also on non-formal education programmes carried out as much by NGOs as on media.

** On projects related to immigration or international cooperation, institutions should also take into account the highest levels of existence of homophobe (hate and/or rejection) inside the own immigrant populations, as well as their cultureâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s homophobic origin. Recommendations to LGTB organizations We as LGTB associations should make visible our immigrant members so as to make aware about the situation of homosexual persecution around the world, and also to increase the visibility of human stories that always exist behind every migratory processes.


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NATIONAL MEETING Colega Jaén organized for the end of November the visit of the members from the participant associations in the project from Bulgaria, Italy and United Kingdom. During their stay, Colega Jaén organized in its head office a meeting with Elena Tajuelo, the president from Jaén Acoge, which is an association for the reception of immigrants and with the provincial coordinator of migratory politics from La Junta de Andalucía (Andalucía’s autonomous government), María Dolores Jiménez, and with youth volunteers from Colega Jaén. In this meeting we analyzed the legal and social situation of immigrant population in the province of Jaén. Colega Jaén organized a visit to the head office of Jaén Acoge due to the interest of the members from the immigrant association from the United Kingdom, who headed to establish a collaboration with this pro-immigrant association. The participants from the partner organisations together with local volunteers realized a street action during the national meeting: Free Hugs. It was a rich full experience, funny and innovative, with which we could transmit good vibrations to the passers-by and reduce the usual distrust towards foreign people.


unit edk ingd om


united kingdom

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NATIONAL SITUATION Great Britain is a very diverse country with a relatively high ethnic minority population. Out of a population of 60 million 85% of people describe themselves as white British. The largest visible minority group is of Indian origin, comprising just 2% of the population. Despite claims to the contrary, the facts do not suggest that indigenous white British people feel besieged by different races. Actually, for the most part, â&#x20AC;&#x153;nativeâ&#x20AC;? Britons handle the juxtaposition of people with different skin colours comparatively well. This view was borne out in the survey CSV carried out with over 200 people as part of the 4: Miss You, Rope! project. The concept of the single market and the freedom to move and work in any country is relatively straightforward to do. Most local people are accepting of migrants, especailly when they are seen to make efforts to integrate in terms of employment and local culture, paricularly the language. For this to continue and recieve even greater support it is essential that employment levels are high and language support is given to all actual and potential migrants.

SURVEY The survey focused on two main groups; local young people, aged 16-25, who are users of the CSV media centre and immigrants from within the European Union, particularly from Eastern Europe, Poles, Latvians and Lithuanians. Overall, the survey showed that the opinion of local youngsters towards immigrants was generally positive and did not reflect the headlines that we see in the tabloid press. The survey involved questionnaires with 212 people. Of that figure 33% were unemployed and 11% volunteering. This was predominantly reflective of the local people of Preston who use the centre. The vast majority of immigrants interviewed were in employment and 88% were aged between 16-25. Gender of the interviewees 111 woman

101 man

212 total


Origin of the interviewees

From UK

3%

Non EU From EU

45% 87% from Poland

52%

The survey found that only 12% had experienced a conflict and when they had the vast majority described the reason as being a misunderstanding or a lack of communication. 32% said they were involved in civil society-clubs and associations. The main things non UK citizens had done to integrate were: ** Learn the language ** Make friends ** Joined a gym ** Socialised ** The vast majority, 68%, knew of a intercultural event 96% of the respondents said they felt European. Of the 4% that didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t, 90% were over the age of 40.

MEDIA ANALYSE Volunteers within the CSV centre looked at media reporting over a three month period and included articles they gathered from outside this period. In general, the focus was upon the comparison between tabloid or red top newspapers, such as The Sun and broadsheet newspapers, such as The Guardian. The overall findings were that the tabloid newspapers tended to portray immigration in a negative way whilst newspapers such as the Guardian presented a more balanced view which often highlighted the positive effects. The vast majority of people who completed the survey felt that the media presented a negative impression of immigration. Most people gathered information from tabloid press, newspapers such as The Sun, Mirror and The Daily Mail. The following are a selection of comments from cheap newspapers: ** Dangers of immigration and job losses and security ** Tension in communities ** Hard life immigrants face abroad ** People bringing immigrants in illegally


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** Illegal asylum seekers ** Man hid in a chair to get into uk ** Cheap labour ** Blitz on migrants to save 5,000 jobs ** Immigration rules will be tightened to stop low-paid foreigners undercuttingâ&#x20AC;? british workers

** Most voters want immigration slashed by more than 250,000 a year, a poll out today reveals

** Seven out of ten say the annual total should be cut by at least 80 per cent. Many want it reduced to match the number of britons leaving to start a new life abroad

** Eight in ten are concerned or very concerned about immigration according to the survey by yougov for the group migrationwatch Despite the claims of the tabloid newspapers empirical evidence, reported by the likes of the BBC, The Guardian etc show that immigration has a positive, often un-reported aspect to it. For example, research published by the Institute for Public Policy Research showed that claims that migrants take our jobs and cut our pay are misplaced and wrong. The economists say there is no evidence to suggest that large-scale migration from Eastern Europe since 2004 has had any substantial negative impact on either wages or employment. Indeed, they add that it is entirely possible there has been a small positive impact on both of these or no impact at all.

NATIONAL MEETING As CSV is a media project, housing a TV studio and appropriate facilities, we decided to hold a TV show about immigration and invited recent immigrants to attend as guests. Moreover CSV had the honour to host representatives from the partner organisations from Greece and France. The show involved local volunteers in the role of presenters interviewing guests from Germany and Poland. The show followed a similar format to the questions contained in the questionnaire. The show can be seen by visiting CSV internet TV station, VolTV at www.voltv.co.uk. Two recent migrants from Poland to UK being interviewed on the VOLTV show. The main interviewees were two Polish people, Piotr and Mateusz who arrived in the UK in 2006. They were asked about their expereinces and if they had generally had a positive experience. They explained that it wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t always easy and they had felt initial difficulty in settling, finding accommodation and a job but, the overall expereince was positive. The biggest single factor in helping with the move and transition to a new life was their ability to speak the language.


reco mm end atio ns


The following recommendations for the European Commission about the improvement of integration of immigrants in our European societies were written from the participants of the International Conference in Matera, Italy. The participants of this meeting were National Leaders, coordinators or local volunteers who worked on this project during the whole process. They had the chance to get in contact with the topic and the opinions of their fellow citizens during the survey and the media analysis. In this way, they collected all the information and opinions together and gave their conclusions about recognition of skills and abilities, suggestions for better integration and how to feel as a European Citizen. These three topics were decided in plenum and they came up from the interest of the people during the survey.

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Recommendations and Conclusions


Recognitions of skills and abilities Dear Sir/Madame, We are writing to inform you about the situation in the different EU countries concerning immigration and particularly the recognition of abilities, skills and competences especially of strangers in the different countries. First of all, we would like to present you some basic facts that we found out after conducting a survey in 9 EU countries (Italy, Spain, France, UK, Bulgaria, Romania, Austria, Latvia, and Greece). Surprisingly 35% of people who live in Italy (Italians and others) feel that their skills are not recognized. Also less than half of respondents from Latvia feel the same. On the other side, the majority of people who live in Bulgaria, UK and France do feel valued enough. In order to increase the percentage of positive answers, we would like to come up with several suggestions: Languages When a person cannot express her/him self efficiently enough in the new language, the stereotype of â&#x20AC;&#x153;foreigners are stupidâ&#x20AC;? emerges. During the survey we received some complaints about difficulties in learning languages. We consider it a good idea to establish centres where immigrants can learn the new languages for free and additionally apart from the language, also learn the habits and traditions of the new country. Prejudices The low knowledge of the history and culture of the European countries leads also to bad prejudices and opinions between the different European citizens. The first step which should be taken to improve this knowledge is to include more useful and updated material in studentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s books. Administration Help The establishment of agencies where


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immigrants can get information about employment, special welfare of the country they live in and help in case of problems in the workplace can be a step forward to get better recognition of their skills and abilities. Diplomas European Law says that all the diplomas from all European universities have the same value, but actually in practice it is not true. When a person with a university diploma goes to another country they need to translate and then legalize this according to the government of the new country. The problem is that even after this; often the new country cannot accept the diploma at the same level. We would like to recommend some fixed standards (international) for recognition of diplomas. This would also help many people to find also a good job in their new country. All ideas mentioned above could make Europe a better place for immigrants. We hope you will consider our recommendations. Many greetings from Egita, Teodor, Ina and Johnatan

Suggestions for better INTEGRATION The first thing we would like to mention, which we realized during the project, is that there is no clear understanding of what â&#x20AC;&#x153;integrationâ&#x20AC;? is and also in practise everyone has their own ideas and actions to demonstrate his/her understanding of integration. Especially between the different countries and mentalities there are big differences in the understanding of integration. In our opinion, it is in the hands of institutions, NGOs and schools to transfer a common and good meaning to the citizens, concerning terminology and practice in daily life. Knowledge transfer in head offices in the form of organized seminars, with formal and non formal education techniques exactly about the topic, provided from experienced people.


Our ideas/proposals We suggest to encourage EU countries for the opening of so called “Immigrant Offices”, organized from immigrants for immigrants at the local municipalities (especially in the cities where many immigrants arrive and live). In this offices, the immigrants should receive help and support in the following sections: Education

Administration

Health

Provide non formal language courses for free

Information about the social benefits from the government

free examination

Formal school

Help with documents (free translations)

free vaccination

Seminars from teachers to teachers to learn about conflict management for “immigrant problems” and to give best practices of “integration”

Provide certificates (health, education, administration) which are legal in all EU countries.

To get help without being reported

Programs for supporting immigrants` students at school

Provide practical info about institutions which can give a hand

Information about the health system

[Idea by: Tomas, Linda, Myrto]


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To feel as a European Citizen This was a very important question in the Questionnaire and also in the heads of all workers, co-workers or volunteers during the whole project. Because we had to face very hard our feelings about beeing European Citizen. Now, after a long process, we say, that it is important to: “Realize and to take the benefits which the European Union gives us!” We think this points are important to reinforce that the people get more easy aware of the benefits: →→ To inform about the European institutions about existing exchange programs and the possibilities for every single citizen regardless of sex, age, abilities. Especially older people should be put under focus (without leaving the younger ones apart) giving them the possibility to take part in Exchanges too. →→ To empower and encourage migrants to take leadership positions in European and intercultural programs in order to reflect the diversity of the European Union. Additionally, support NGOs which are made of migrants or working with migrants as target group, since they are the ones who can involve them the best way in European topics. →→ To improve communication about the EU, to explain more the way it works, its institutions and the concrete benefits for single persons, NGOs, local institutions and whole countries. For Example: daily/ weekly TV spots on national or public channels. This could be how they will get directly into everyone’s lives and will demonstrate different possibilities. [Idea by: Aude, Guillaume, Margerete, Katja]


other recommendation During the National Meeting in France participants and the hosting organization had together with journalists, politicians and migrants a discussion about “Citizenship”. They think that the following explanation from the “T-Kit about European Citizenship” (by the Council of Europe) is a good try to give a better idea about this topic: Promoting a complex understanding of citizenship implies, especially nowadays, challenging simplistic answers (e.g. reducing citizenship to a list of rights and obligations towards the state) and providing space for everyone to be actors in their own plays, with their variety of needs, values and ways of thinking. Promoting a dynamic understanding of citizenship implies gently engaging people’s resistance to the rapid changes in society (e.g. the impact of technological changes or growing internationalization processes). Promoting an integral understanding of citizenship implies putting back into its wider context every reductionism of reality (e.g. by considering the growing multiethnic and multicultural composition of our communities) [T-Kit “Citizenship” of the Council of Europe]


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Annexes


Partners

Associazione Culturale Link | Italy Headorgnisation of the project 4:Miss You, Rope! Link is a cultural organization created in 2003 by experienced youth leaders and young people. The aim of the creation of a non governmental organisation is to have a tool for better access to the needs of young people living in our local community. Moreover, to give a concrete contribution for the satisfaction of their requests in terms of participation, active citizenship, feeling of belonging to a common Europe, tolerance and antiracism. Link wants to get young people closer to European issues, to bring a European dimension in a region far away from decisionmaking centres and peripheral in terms of geographical and economic position. Associazione Culturale Link provides help and training to young people – inside and outside the organization – who want to implement new projects in fostering their participation. Link organizes international youth exchanges, intercultural learning activities, promotion and information campaigns, international projects with the goal to promote active citizenship. All our activities are based on non-formal education. post Via Silvio Pellico 10, 70022 Altamura, Italy office Via Santa Croce 3, 70022 Altamura, Italy phone/fax +39 080 314 8080 link@linkyouth.org – www.linkyouth.org

Grenzenlos | Austria Grenzenlos is an Austrian NGO based in Vienna. It is independent of religions and political bodies. Grenzenlos is a non-profit association. Its main purpose is to promote world peace and respect between people through intercultural nonformal education programmes abroad which combine cultural integration with engagement at non-profit initiatives worldwide. The German word “Grenzenlos” stands for “no boundaries“, as well as “no limits“. The word explains the basic mission


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of Grenzenlos: to promote the personal development of individuals (no limits!) and inter-cultural understanding through international encounters, trainings, work experience, (no boundaries!). post Latschkagasse 1/4, 1090 Vienna, Austria office Heiligenstädter Straße 2, Vienna 9, Austria phone +43 (0)1 315 76 36 fax +43 (0)1 315 76 37 info@grenzenlos.or.at – www.grenzenlos.or.at Youth and Civil Initiatives in the Rose Valley | Bulgaria The “Youth and Civil Initiatives in the Rose Valley” NGO was established at the beginning of 2007 with the main objectives of: raising young people’s awareness of the aching problems of our world, integration of socially disadvantaged and disabled people, fostering human rights, gender equality and intercultural dialogue. This we do through different initiatives such as: awareness raising campaigns, organising local events, seminars, conferences, carrying out surveys, polling citizens’ opinion on different issues, taking part in intercultural and international youth projects. We are very active with the Youth in Action Programme, the Europe for Citizens Programme and the European Youth Foundation categories. We also organize many local projects funded by our national government as well as other funding organizations. office 71 General Kartsov St., 4300 Karlovo, Bulgaria phone/fax +359 335 93300 mobile +359 898742757 mgird@abv.bg – www.mgird.youthbg.net


Intercultura | France The aim of Intercultura is to promote intercultural learning and human rights education and operates with youth in the areas of active participation, intercultural learning, local and European citizenship. We undertake training, meetings, seminars and support projects of local actors, associations, youth, municipalities etc. post Le Mezeray, 22100 Saint Helen, Bretagne, France phone +33 02 96 390469 inter.cultura@yahoo.fr â&#x20AC;&#x201C; www.intercultura.fr

ELIX | Greece ELIX, Conservation Volunteers Greece is a non-governmental not-for-profit organization promoting voluntary service and education, since 1987. The main value of ELIX is the personal development of individuals as citizens of the world, through active participation in projects for the common good. ELIX organizes international voluntary projects for the protection of the environment, conservation of the cultural heritage projects, as well as social service projects. office Veranzerou 15, 10677, Athens, Greece phone +30 2103825506 fax +30 2103814682 elix@elix.org.gr â&#x20AC;&#x201C; www.elix.org.gr


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RED – Radosu Efektu Darbnica | Latvia RED – Creative Effects’ Workshop The main aim of NGO RED is rural youth activation for participating in social processes. RED participates and organizes such different multicultural projects as cultural events, youth exchanges, training courses, seminars and voluntary projects, promoting rural youth mobility, intercultural learning and voluntary work on local and international level. Art, creativity, culture, environment, intercultural learning, joy, Europe, democracy, participation, inclusion, anti-discrimination, non-formal education and voluntary are mainly key-words of all RED activities. There is no standart for what we do… phone +371 26433683 REDbiedriba@gmail.com – www.redngo.lv

COLEGA-JAÉN | Spain COLEGA-JAÉN is a meeting point for people willing to fight against all forms of intolerance and discrimination, especially homophobia. It has room for lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transsexuals, friends, acquaintances and families. Since 1999 COLEGA-JAÉN assist everyone in need of information or advice and raise awareness about respect to diversity through conferences, table discussions, informative meetings, workshops, stands, educational resources. office Avda. Andalucía, 47, 5º Jaén, Spain phone +34 953 222 662 jaen@colegaweb.org – www.colegajen.tk


AREAS | Romania The Regional Association for adult education Suceava (AREAS) The mission of the non-profit organization is to promote best practices in adult education and professional development with a view to contributing to the sustainable development of communities throughout Northern and North-eastern Romania. The organization has the objective to develop community resources at the local, to ensure access to learning opportunities for adults in rural areas, to assist the integration of Romania in the EU, to facilitate cross-border cooperation’s and much more. post Str. Universitatii, nr 48, camera 7, Suceava, Romania phone/fax +40 0230 524 128 areasv@gmail.com – www.areas.ro

CSV | England Since 1962 we have been the UK’s most exciting organisation for involving volunteers and trainees in their communities. CSV passionately believes that everyone has something to offer. We reject no one. Everyone can make a difference. CSV works in many ways to make a difference. By involving people we raise the reading levels of children in schools, help people with disabilities to discover hidden talents, bring a friendly face and continuing care for older people, prevent crime by mentoring young offenders and give people the skills to turn their lives around. CSV is a national charity with over 600 staff working in 90 locations. You may not know all the things your colleagues in CSV do, and the impact they make. office 237 Pentonville Road, London N1 9NJ, United Kingdom phone +20 7278 6601 information@csv.org.uk – www.csv.org.uk


Questionnaire

4:miss you, rope!

81

Europe-wide reasearch on interculturalism and immigration

4: Miss You, Rope! is a Europe-wide reasearch on Interculturalism and Immigration, granted by the European Programme Europe for Citizens. Name of the organization represents name of the country. Our purpose is to find out the attitude of society â&#x20AC;&#x201C; stereotypes, their causes, as well as to stimulate to think over on this issue and to promote tolerance among people of different cultures and nations. We invite you to reply the query. Thank you in advance! Please note that his form is anonymous and the information will be published only in summarized mode. Responderâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s profile Gender [ ] Male [ ] Female

Age [ ] 17-28

[ ] 29-39

[ ] 40-49

[ ] 50-64

[ ] over 65

Nationality [ ] (partner country e.g Italy) ....................................................................................................... [ ] European Union (please specify) ........................................................................................... [ ] Europe (please specify) ............................................................................................................ [ ] Other (please specify) ............................................................................................................... Education [ ] primary

[ ] secondary

[ ] higher

Occupation ............................................................................................................................................................. Why are you here? (to be asked to non-nationals only) [ ] work [ ] relationships [ ] study [ ] holidays [ ] other (please specify) ............................. How long do you live here? ............................................................................................................................................................. Contacts (optional): .............................................................................................................................................................


Questionnaire 1. How often do you get in touch with other cultures in your daily life? [ ] Everyday [ ] Often [ ] A few times in a year [ ] Never 2. Have you ever had problems/conflicts with a person from another culture/ nationality? [ ] yes (please, go to question nr. 3) [ ] no (please, go to question nr. 4) 3. What was the reason of it? [ ] incompatibility of characters [ ] misunderstanding [ ] differences between cultures [ ] lack of knowledge of other cultures [ ] else ................................... (place your option here) 4. Do you feel at home here? [ ] Yes [ ] No [ ] I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know Why? .................................................................................................................................................... 5. How would you rate your involvement in civil society organization? [ ] not involved at all, not interested [ ] interested but not involved [ ] involved sometimes [ ] involved [ ] involved, with a leading role 6. If you are involved in a civil society organization, please provide details: ................................................................................................................................................................ 7. Concerning immigration do you think it should be favored: [ ] integration [ ] inclusion [ ] interaction [ ] assimilation [ ] cohabitation [ ] coexistence 8. What have you done to integrate yourself into the society? (as an immigrant) or What have you done to integrate immigrants in your community (as a national)? ................................................................................................................................................................

9. Can you tell about one intercultural event you know? ................................................................................................................................................................


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10. Please write a joke you have heard about other cultures/nationalities? ................................................................................................................................................................ 11. Where do you get information about other cultures/nations? (you can check several answers) mass media: [ ] TV [ ] radio [ ] press [ ] internet [ ] touring guides [ ] people of different culture/nation that I personally know [ ] else ...................................................... (place your option here) 12. Do you find the news about other cultures in mass media sufficient? [ ] sufficient enough [ ] rather sufficient [ ] rather insufficient [ ] totally insufficient [ ] hard to tell 13. What is the news from media about immigration you better remember? ................................................................................................................................................................ 14. Do you vote? (in this country) [ ] Yes (please go to question n. 15)

[ ] No (please go to question n.14bis)

14bis. If not, why? [ ] I don’t want to (please go to question n. 15) [ ] I can’t (please go to question n.14ter) 14ter. If you can’t, would you like to? [ ] Yes [ ] No 15. Do you have the possibility to practice your culture and traditions? [ ] rather sufficient [ ] sufficient enough [ ] rather insufficient [ ] rather insufficient [ ] totally insufficient [ ] hard to say 16. Name the most essential thing to be done to improve relationships among people of different cultures/nations: ................................................................................................................................................................ 17. Do you feel your competences/abilities/skills are recognized? [ ] Yes [ ] No [ ] I don’t know Why? ....................................................................................................................................................


18. Where do you imagine your future? [ ] Here, in the country where I live now [ ] In another country (please specify where and why) . .......................................................... 19. Do you feel a European citizen? [ ] Yes [ ] No [ ] I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know Why? .................................................................................................................................................... 20. What should European institutions do to promote integration and intercultural dialogue into the society? [ ] foster mobility [ ] encourage and support civil society organizations [ ] reinforce welfare [ ] guarantee respect of rights [ ] other ................................................................................................. 21. Specific question optional for every partner country 22. Specific question optional for every partner country


Thanks to the European Programme “Europe for Citizens” the project “4: Miss You, Rope! “Could be developed, moreover the we got support of local and national sponsors. The whole team of the project “4: Miss You, Rope!” wants to say an honest thank you to the European Commission.

The Citizenship Programme 2007-2013 This programme supports a wide range of activities and organisations promoting “active European citizenship”, especially the involvement of citizens and civil society organisations in the process of European integration. The programme “Europe for citizens” with a total budget of EUR 215 millions starts on 1 January 2007 and ends on 31 December 2013.

Introduction The priority of this European Programme is to promote certain themes of particular relevance for the development of an active European citizenship. Applications for the Programme can include one or more priorities; this encourages more citizens for an active participation. However, the Programme remains open to innovative, bottom-up projects, which do not fall within these priority themes. There are permanent priorities which give indicators on aspects on which emphasis will be put in a given period. In order to be able to react to new or very specific topics arising on the European agenda, annual priorities of relevance for this Programme and of a limited duration can be set up.

Permanent themes Priority will be given under this Programme to the following themes:

** Future of the European Union and its basic values ** Active European Citizenship: participation and democracy in Europe ** Inter-cultural dialogue

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Europe for Citizens programme


** Peopleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wellbeing in Europe: employment, social cohesion and sustainable development

** Impact of EU policies in societies Annual priorities Priorities of the programme for 2009: ** The future of the European Union and its basic values ** European citizenship, participation and democracy in Europe ** Monitoring of the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue 2008 ** Well-being of people in Europe â&#x20AC;&#x201C; employment, social cohesion and sustainable development ** Impact of the European policy in the society: ** Encourage local authorities to create thematic networks related to their involvement in development activities. Priorities of the programme for 2010: ** The future of the European Union and its basic values ** Active European citizenship: European Year of Volunteering 2011. ** Intercultural dialogue ** Peopleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s well-being in Europe ** Impact of EU policies in societies General objectives The general objectives of the Europe for citizens Programme are to contribute to: ** giving citizens the opportunity to interact and participate in constructing an ever closer Europe, which is democratic and world-oriented, united in and enriched through its cultural diversity, thus developing citizenship of the European Union; ** developing a sense of European identity, based on common values, history and culture; ** fostering a sense of ownership of the European Union among its citizens; ** enhancing tolerance and mutual understanding between European citizens respecting and promoting cultural and linguistic diversity, while contributing to intercultural dialogue.


COUNCIL OF EUROPE

CONSEIL DE L'EUROPE

The European Youth Foundation (EYF) is a fund established in 1972 by the Council of Europe to provide financial support for European youth activities. It has an annual budget of approximately 3 million Euros. Since 1972, more than 300 000 young people, aged between 15 and 30 and mostly from member states, have benefited directly from EYF-supported activities. In 2007 the EYF supported some 300 projects involving more than 15 000 young people. Its purpose is to encourage co-operation among young people in Europe by providing financial support to such European youth activities which serve the promotion of peace, understanding and co-operation in a spirit of respect for the Council of Europeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s fundamental values such as human rights, democracy, tolerance and solidarity. The EYF thus provides financial support to the following types of activity undertaken by non-governmental youth organisations or networks or by other non-governmental structures involved in areas of youth work relevant to the Council of Europeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s youth policies and work: ** educational, social, cultural and humanitarian activities of a European character; ** activities aiming at strengthening peace and co-operation in Europe; ** activities designed to promote closer co-operation and better understanding among young people in Europe, particularly by developing the exchange of information; ** activities intended to stimulate mutual aid in Europe and in the developing countries for cultural, educational and social purposes; ** studies, research and documentation on youth matters.

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European youth foundation council of europe


End of print Grafica&Stampa - Altamura / Italy in January 2010.


LK BK

COUNCIL OF EUROPE

CONSEIL DE L'EUROPE

I&I / Interculturalism and Immigration

LINK | BOOK

LK BK

I&I 4 MISS YOU ROPE

Interculturalism and Immigration A Europe-wide research Final outcome of 4: Miss You, Rope! project

4: Miss You, Rope! is … 1 year of project, 9 NGO´s, 9 European Countries, 12 International Meetings within the project, 28 different medias analyzed, 100 local and international volunteers, 2.323 interviewed persons, more than 3.000 citizen involved in the whole project.

www.linkyouth.org

4 MISS YOU ROPE

I&I - Interculturalism and Immigration  

a Europe-wide research - final outcome of the European project (granted by Europe for Citizens program) 4MISS YOU, ROPE!

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