The Norwegian Government wants to ensure that Ukrainian refugees are included more quickly in Norwegian society
Press release | Date: 29/04/2022 | Ministry of Labour and Social Inclusion
The Norwegian Government is submitting a Proposition to the Storting, proposing temporary amendments to several Acts. The objective is to ensure that the legislation is flexible enough for the municipalities to quickly and effectively handle a large number of refugees.
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– The feedback from the consultation shows how important it is that the arrivals receive sufficient language training. Many contributors have also pointed out that a large number of steps need to be taken to make sure that people who arrive in Norway can quickly begin working or pursuing education, says Minister of Labour and Social Inclusion Marte Mjøs Persen.
Rights, but no obligations
In principle, all refugees in Norway have the right and obligation to participate in an introduction programme. In order to lower the statutory requirements, the Norwegian Government is proposing to reduce the number of compulsory elements in the introduction programme:
- A right, but no obligation, to participate in the introduction programme for six months, with the possibility of an extension of up to six months.
- For people who do not already have upper secondary school level education, the programme is proposed to last up to three years, with the possibility of an extension of up to one year. The programme must contain work or education-related elements, language training, and guidance for parents.
- A right to Norwegian language training after settlement, with the right being applicable for one year from the start date. It is not proposed to make Norwegian language training compulsory.
- Municipalities are under an obligation to provide the training as soon as possible, and no later than three months after refugees are settled.
– We must ensure that Ukrainian refugees’ everyday lives are as safe and predictable as possible. At the same time, we know that the situation may be challenging for the municipalities, which already have many statutory tasks. This is why it is important that our proposals address both concerns,’ states Ms Persen.