Good Ideas: Employers, Work and Refugees
For refugees, the challenge of finding employment in a new city and culture can seem daunting. Employers can be equally challenged. Not knowing how to assess refugee education, work experience and skills can mean missing out on talent and opportunity. In our digital age, connecting in-person can seem like a thing of the past. But for job-seeking refugees and employers in Sweden it can be the key to their success In part inspired by the Canadian approach to refugee integration, where civil society actors help newcomers find work, We Link Sweden applied for a VINNOVA (Swedish Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation) innovation grant in 2015.
In the regional district of Kassel (Germany), local leaders created a unique one day opportunity to give job seekers a chance to spend a day working for a local employer.
District authorities had long understood that North Hessian employers were looking for motivated workers but struggling to fill jobs and apprenticeships. Inspired by Germany’s Girls and Boys Day, Kassel’s Department of Social Affairs created Refugees’ Day on the same model to give refugee jobseekers a special opportunity to spend ‘one day’ working in a regional company. The path from refugee jobseeker to intern to fully-employed community member was swift.
In 2015, German cities were overwhelmed with the sudden influx of refugees. The Bertelsmann Stiftung foundation wondered how they could help. A future-focused operational foundation, its programs range across a number of activities from education to employment to social cohesion. Focused on strengthening society’s ability to help individuals reach their full potential, Bertelsmann Stiftung develops the resources needed to achieve those goals.
With the challenges posed to receiving cities and a lack of preexisting coordination and organization to address these challenges, Bertelsmann Stiftung recognized it had a role to play and previous experience to leverage to support cities.
Businesses have a significant role to play in refugee integration. February 26: Join us for an in-depth discussion on refugee labour market integration, and learn about programs that target immigrant and refugee recruitment, while creating workplace benefits for employers. Co-hosted with Hire Immigrants, the Immigrant Futures project presents the first in a 3-part webinar series on “Investing in Refugee Talent: Lessons Learned in Labour Market Integration.”
Read the new report and best practices from Hire Immigrants.
Senator Ratna Omidvar joined Ryerson’s WC2 University Network Conference as a keynote speaker and panelist with John Ralston Saul and Haroon Siddiqui in a conversation ranging from the role of universities in promoting migration to the the new political clout of immigrants: “The future of the world lies in cities,” says Omidvar.
Naika Foroutan, Humboldt University, examines right-wing populism in Europe with a particular focus on Germany, arguing that current trends towards the rejection of already negotiated, fought for norms and values of plural democracies pose a serious challenge to the possibilities of inclusive nationalism in multicultural societies like Germany and Canada.
The 2018 GDX Lecture is followed by a moderated discussion with Senator Ratna Omidvar.WATCH>>
Irene Bloemraad on concepts of citizenship and rights and judgements of deservingness shape citizens’ support for immigration: CIFAR’s 2018 David Dodge Lecturer challenges the premise of national values as “necessarily exclusionary.”
Since its launch in 2016, UNHCR’s #WithRefugees campaign has gathered petition signatures, initiatives, cities and coalition partner members to stand #WithRefugees. This video shows the campaign’s incredible achievements in sharing positive stories about refugees.
Registered? Metropolis Canada, Halifax, March 21-23, 2019, is Canada’s premiere annual forum for researchers, policy makers, and practitioners to get together to share and exchange knowledge and experience. Don’t miss the opening night’s Canada Lecture & Visit to Pier 21.
International migration is at the top of the policy agenda for many countries. This year’s International Metropolis is hosted by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Join delegates from around the world to exchange research, best practices and forge new partnership on the 2019 theme, “The Promise of Migration: Inclusion, Economic Growth and Global Cooperation”, Ottawa, June 24 – 28, 2019.
A Diagnostic Tool for Inclusive City Building
Take the pulse of your city with MyCOM, the My City of Migration Diagnostic. The MyCOM Diagnostic is a new, easy to use tool designed to help you assess the quality of inclusion in your city: at work, at school, on election day, in health and as a new arrival. Build a custom profile of your city’s strengths and weaknesses across 10 dimensions of inclusion. Find out how your city measures up.
In our Building Inclusive Cities case study on Toronto, Dr. Zhixi Zhuang, Ryerson School of Regional and Urban Planning, describes the central role cities play in the processes of immigrant settlement and integration: “It has become imperative for municipalities to understand the dynamics and complexity of the global migration phenomenon and tackle the challenges and opportunities it presents locally.”
News You Can Use
- Settling In 2018: Indicators of Immigrant Integration. Paris: OECD, 2019.
- ICMPD Migration Outlook 2019. Vienna: International Centre for Migration Policy Development, 2019.
- The Leadership of Cities. By mayors Georgios Kaminis (Athens), Erias Lukwago (Kampala), Marvin Rees (Bristol). In: Project Syndicate, Dec 7, 2018.
- Global Refugee Talent: Business Leaders Share Insights on the Skills and Potential of the Global Refugee Talent Pool. Washington: Talent Beyond Boundaries, September 2018.
- Identifying Migrant bodies in the Meditteranean. By Ottavio Anpuero Villagran. Barcelona, United Nations University, 2018.
- A Dozen Facts About Immigration: report. Washington: Brookings Institution, 2018.
- Lift the Ban: Why People Seeking Asylum Should Have the Right to Work. London: Refugee Action, 2018.
- Policy Guide on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees. Geneva: IOM, 2018.
- Working Together for Local Integration of Migrants and Refugees in Amsterdam. Paris: OECD, 2018.
- Migration and the Economy: Economic Realities, Social Impacts & Political Choices. Oxford: Oxford Martin School; Citigroup, 2018.
- Urban refuge: How cities are building inclusive communities. International Rescue Committee; Citigroup, 2018.
- When Facts Don’t Matter: How to Communicate More Effectively about Immigration’s Costs and Benefits. By Natalia Banulescu-Bogdan. Washington: Migration Policy Institute, 2018.
- Real people, true stories: Refugees for more Inclusive societies: Discussion paper. Brussels: Friends of Europe, 2018.
Towards an EU Policy on Migration Data. Luxembourg: European Commission, Eurostat and Global Migration Data Analysis Centre, 2018
In case you missed it:
Watch Planning Urban Resilience: Lessons from Toronto – Why do diversity, inclusion and resilience matter to cities? Learn how smart investments in the public realm can create safe, accessible and inclusive public spaces.