Caritas Europa have issued a new publication entitled ‘Welcome – Migrants make Europe stronger’. The publication highlights the ‘barriers’ that prevent millions of migrants from becoming full-fledged members of the European societies in which they live. “These barriers”, Caritas Europa said, “are robbing migrants of their dignity and Europe of their potential contributions to further boost Europe’s social, cultural and economic score”.
In the document, Caritas Europa identifies three types of barriers that can often delay or render impossible integration of migrants:
- Cultural barriers, such as limited acceptance by and limited interaction with receiving communities;
- Structural barriers, including limited access to basic rights and services;
- And Socio-economic barriers, including limited access to resources and participation.
The new report aims to demonstrate that these barriers can be overcome, offering best practices from over 13 countries across Europe, along with specific recommendations to national governments aiming at breaking down these barriers.
Finally, the report includes an assessment of the tensions that appear when comparing EU policies on integration with the positions of the Council of Europe and those of Caritas Europa. This assessment aims to help decision-makers find ways to ease these tensions and contribute to building an inclusive and prosperous Europe.
Speaking ahead of the publication, Secretary General of Caritas Europa, Jorge Nuño Mayer, said, “Caritas seeks to bridge the gap between the multitude of obstacles witnessed and experienced on the ground, in order to offer ideas to policy makers and practitioners on how to create an environment that fosters inclusive participation and empowers migrants and receiving communities to work together toward the creation of cohesive societies.”
Caritas Europa is a network of 49 member organisations in 46 European countries and one of the 7 regions of Caritas Internationalis. Their members provide services to millions of people in need. Caritas Europa aims at lifting people out of poverty by empowering them and by influencing unjust structures and unfair policies that keep people trapped in positions of disempowerment. Caritas Europa is represented in Ireland by Trócaire. For more information see www.caritas.eu.