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a decade to regain your professional status

a decade to regain your professional status
a decade to regain your professional status

On the occasion of World Refugee Day, and amid increasingly strict anti-immigration stances in Europe, SINGA, an organization dedicated to the inclusion of newcomershighlights a still crucial situation: the alarming professional degradation of refugees, in which a 47.5% of migrants with higher education degrees occupy positions that require less training than they have.

The truth is that the number of displaced people around the world exceeds 100 million and although these flows are not the most important in scale in Europe and Spain, this NGO based in Barcelona underlines the urgency of preparing to include these people who come with a background of multiple talents to a Europe that needs that diversity and its contribution to innovation.

Entrepreneurship, a vector of social inclusion and economic dynamism

Entrepreneurs who are in a place different from where they were born are often undervalued talents; they face numerous obstacles when joining the market, such as the lack of recognition of skills developed abroad, long administrative complexities, professions restricted only to locals, significant language barriers, racism and discrimination.

The journey to better opportunities is full of dangers that put their own lives at risk, between dangerous crossings, smugglers and human traffickers, so when they finally arrive in Europe, they concentrate their energy on the task of obtaining local documentation and legal status in the host country. Furthermore, administrative and legal setbacks put undocumented people at a disadvantage when it comes to enjoying basic rights such as housing and work.

For Flavia Catacora, director of SINGA Barcelona: “There is definitely no easy path to Europe, and it is our responsibility to advocate for policies that defend the dignity and human rights of these people throughout their migration process, as we are currently witnessing a reduction in protection standards, deterrence of arrivals, and arrests and forced returns.”

Spain and the professional inclusion of immigrants: an opportunity to boost the economy

Spain is taking significant steps towards the recognition of its immigration situation, being an example to follow for the rest of European countries. On April 9, the Spanish Parliament approved in the first instance, to continue its treatment later, the taking into consideration of the ILP Regularization, a citizen initiative to regularize the situation of around 500,000 migrants, accelerating their inclusion in the labor market. However, the group still faces substantial challenges, including higher unemployment rates and overrepresentation in precarious sectors such as agriculture and domestic services, where there is still a large amount of informal work.

In 2021, the unemployment rate for immigrants was 22.4%, compared to 14.6% for Spaniards. Additionally, more than half of college-educated immigrants are overqualified for their jobs, compared to 33% of native Spaniards according to the Brain Waste – Lighthouse Report. Entrepreneurship is relevant there, often becoming a crucial means for these people to work in their field of expertise and create their future independently.

The proportion of self-employed workers from non-EU countries has increased by 60%, representing 8% of the self-employed workforce. Immigrants contribute to 15% of business creation in countries such as France and 21% in Germany (CEPI, 2019). Optimizing the skills of immigrants could increase the GDP of France, the NGO’s headquarters, by almost 7% in the long term. “Inclusion is an obvious response to the challenge of European economic growth and competitiveness, it is a source of global creativity and a lever of intergenerational solidarity,” he declared. Benoît Hamon, CEO of SINGA Global.

In light of these findings, this organization is accelerating its entrepreneurship programs across Europe, developing employability modules in several cities and implementing mentoring and networking initiatives to better serve the needs of newcomers eager to develop their projects. To date, the SINGA network has supported more than 2,000 migrants and refugees around the world, and as Catacora says: “It is urgent to regularize those who do not have papers, whatever their reasons for migration, whether political or economic. ; Our mission is to demonstrate that migration not only serves to fill “difficult” jobs, but is an opportunity to attract qualified minds and promote innovation that benefits any host society.

“We work to boost the potential of migrants and refugees by recognizing their autonomy and rejecting victimization, while recognizing the challenges they face; Our goal is to restore their self-confidence, so through entrepreneurship programs we provide them with support in different areas so that their projects have a greater chance of success,” concludes the director.

Source: Ambito

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