Integration Café – Malta Integration Network II

Erika, Carla and Neil at the Integration Cafe

On the 26th of June, 2015 aditus foundation put together an NGO space that showcased our findings of the MIN II Project contained in our new publication Malta Integration Network II: Policy Indicators for Migrant Integration.

Together with our project findings, the Integration Café exhibited other materials on integration that have been developed by us and other civil society organisations. Materials published by the Jesuit Refugee Service Malta, PHROM and SOS Malta, as well as the Joint NGO Submissions to the Public Consultation on National Migrant Integration Strategy 2015 – 2020, were made available to the public. 

Integration Posters  Integration Posters

In a conference room adjacent to the Cafe, the Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties (MSDC)’s National Conference on The Integration of Third Country Nationals in Malta took place

Neil, our Director, represented civil society working with migrants in a panel discussion focusing on Where are we now? Current Challenges and Considerations, whilst our guest Thomas Huddleston, Policy Analyst, Migration Policy Group, was a keynote speaker focusing on Malta and the Migrant Integration Policy Index (MIPEX) 2015 in practice.

Neil Falzon

Neil presenting our recommendations

For more information on the project and its recommendations email: [email protected]

With the co-financing support of the Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties (MSDC).

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Thomas Huddleston, MIPEX


‘Nitkellmu?’, our detailed report on refugee integration in Malta, with UNHCR Malta.

A report published by UNHCR and aditus foundation presents settlement and integration realities from the perspective of refugees, as well as from the viewpoint of personnel within public services in Malta. The aim is to contribute towards a positive integration process, to the benefit of people granted protection, as well as for Maltese society at large.

The report is based on two main activities spanning over several years:

  • Findings from house visits to 150 refugees and beneficiaries of protection who are living in private accommodation in local communities in Malta;
  • Interactive training sessions delivered to front-desk staff and managers of mainstream services, addressing refugee realities, best practices and challenges relating to their interaction with migrants and refugees.

The report describes a range of significant problems encountered but also positive lessons learned.

Many refugees confirm that they live their lives separately from locals, rarely engaging in social interaction with neighbours or the local community.

More than half of the refugees confirmed that they were in employment at the time of the interview, but many have extremely low wages and exploitation, particularly when work is unregistered.

Nitkellmureport

Nitkellmureport

All participating mainstream services indicated a strong commitment towards improving their quality of service to all, irrespective of nationality, status, gender, etc.

But communication challenges are consistently mentioned by staff among relevant entities as a main obstacle to effective service-provision.

The report emphasises that integration policies can open the doors to enjoyment of human rights through processes such as education, employment, political participation, non-discrimination, long-term residence as well as citizenship and family unity.  Integration opportunities also present incentives for refugees to be socially proactive, improving their educational profiles and engaging in fruitful employment.

The publication has been welcomed by Ministers Marie Louise Coleiro Preca and Helena Dalli who have jointly penned a foreword for the report:

“Malta is continuing to make the case for further engagement with the EU on the basis of solidarity. But we also need to seriously address the reality of migrants and refugees who are here to stay and give particular attention to the needs of separated and unaccompanied children. 

We welcome this report, giving attention to the views of those granted asylum as well as the perspective of people working as service providers. Only through establishing the facts of the situation is it possible to define what is required to facilitate positive settlement, foster integration of people granted protection in Malta and ensure the wellbeing of separated and unaccompanied children.”


Our input to the national human rights scoping exercise

We’re happy to share NGO submissions to the Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties, in the context of a national human rights scoping exercise launched some weeks ago.

As with our submissions to other such exercises, including to the UPR and the UN treaty-monitoring bodies, we conducted this exercise together with a number of NGO partners: JRS Malta, Integra Foundation, SOS Malta and Richmond Foundation.

The document makes extensive reference to submissions we already made to other bodies, and touches on a number of our core human rights concerns.

We would like to thank the Ministry for this opportunity to share our views, and look forward to following-up our submissions with more in-depth dialogue.

You can read our document by clicking the below cover, or on our Publications page.

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What are the elements of a national integration policy?

During the Roundtable meeting we organised in the context of the ‘Malta Integration Network’ project, participants were encouraged to discuss the key elements for a successful national TCN integration policy.  We had 3 active workshops and a plenary session that drew on the best practices of other EU MS in order to highlight the steps we can recommend Malta to adopt in its policy formulation process.

You can now request all documentation relating to this event and we’d be happy to share it.

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‘Malta’s IVF law reinforces inequalities’ – Joint press statement with Malta Gay Rights Movement

The ‘Embryo Protection Act’ is an unashamedly homophobic law insofar as it denies access to medical services purely on the basis of sexual orientation.  It is also a violation of human dignity by introducing unreasonable and unwarranted intrusions into physical integrity, in its criminalization of egg or sperm donation.

aditus foundation and Malta Gay Rights Movement take the opportunity of yesterday’s opening of the tendering process for IVF services to reiterate MGRM’s earlier criticism of the IVF law (available here).

Under the IVF law, medically assisted procreation is only open to “prospective parents”, defined in a discriminatory manner as “two persons of the opposite sex who are united in marriage, or…who are in a stable relationship with each other.”  In practice, this means that same-sex couples will be automatically denied access to medical services on the basis of their sexual orientation.

Furthermore, the Act imposes severe criminal sanctions against any person who donates his sperm or her eggs outside of the IVF law framework.  aditus foundation and MGRM question the relationship between embryo protection and the fundamental rights of all persons to be protected from violations of their physical and mental integrity, and to decide on core matters such as their private and family lives.

“We question the compliance of Malta’s IVF law with human rights law, since it seems to ignore legislation and jurisprudence unequivocally stating that all rights and obligations accessible by different-sex couples should be equally accessible and enjoyable by same-sex couples.” Gabi Calleja, MGRM Coordinator.

“We fail to understand why the government is concerned with what men do with their own sperm, and what women do with their own eggs.  As long as no third parties are negatively affected, these are decisions for individuals to take, and not for the state to criminalise.”  Dr. Neil Falzon, aditus foundation Director.

aditus foundation and MGRM strongly urge the competent authorities to truly respect, protect and fulfil the rights of all persons irrespective of their sexual orientation and to embrace a more realistic, understanding and indiscriminate notion of ‘family’.  In particular, the two organisations urge a thorough revision of the Embryo Protection Act to remove all discriminatory provisions and to bring it in line with human rights standards.

Download the statement here.

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MGRM