The European Foundation for the Improvement of the Living and Working Conditions (Eurofound) published the results of the study “Approaches to the labour market integration of refugees and asylum seekers”. The study is mainly based on the information gathered by the Eurofound’s network of correspondents, including Praxis as the Estonian correspondent.

As the refugee crisis began in 2015, the issue of integrating the refugees and asylum seekers in the society quickly came to fore. An important part of the integration process is participating in the labour market. There are a number of studies conducted about the issue previously, therefore the aim of this Eurofound study is to update the information regarding legislation and practical arrangements; explore whether and how the available services and support facilitate the access to the labour market of the asylum seekers; describe the role of social partners in the area.

The study brings out countries that the main destination countries are Germany, Norway, Sweden etc; the main transit countries are Greece, Italy and Bulgaria; and countries that are moderately or hardly affected from the crisis are France, Estonia Latvia, and Poland. According to the study, in about half of the countries the refugees’/asylum seekers’ integration to the labour market is an important issue in the policy debate, including in those countries which are hardly affected by the crisis (i.e. the Baltic States). Most of the EU Member States have amended their legislation as a response to the crisis, focusing mostly on asylum seekers and with a purpose of limiting the inflow of new refugees/asylum seekers or promoting their integration to the labour market. The study showed that in most of the countries the social partners play an active role for example in developing labour market integration policies.

The full report is available here.