And all this is happening within a country with already +10% unemployment numbers, over 350 000 Finns out of work.
These people are absolutely nuts.
Justice and Employment Minister Jari Lindström, Education and Culture Minister Sanni Grahn-Laasonen and Local Government and Public Reform Minister Anu Vehviläinen presented the series of six major proposals to journalists during a news conference Tuesday.
The government ministers said that the goal of their integration action plan is to ensure that migrants are quickly settled in municipalities, where they can get training and work.
1. Accelerated resettlement in municipalities and speedy integration
According to the ministers, currently municipalities don’t have adequate space for immigrants and the government is looking to fast track the process of settling new arrivals in local communities. Residence permits granted will be used as a model for initial mapping as a means of directing asylum recipients to areas in which it would be easier for them to integrate. Employment Minister Jari Lindström said that this measure would prevent the concentration of refugees in the capital region.
2. Fast track to training and working life
Part of the government’s plan would involve linking educational institutions to the initial mapping process. The aim is to increase the availability of work-based training. The government would set out to develop customised training pathways that would facilitate integration, and as quickly as possible.
3. Improved language skills
According to Employment Minister Lindström language skills don’t develop on the school bench; instead he noted, people should aim to develop their Finnish language skills in the workplace.
4. Adult education reform
Among the new arrivals are young adults who have not completed their basic education. Education and Culture Minister Sanni Grahn-Laasonen said that Finland has not needed adult primary education programmes for some time, so the situation is a new one for the education system. Education programmes will also include elements such as language and culture programmes as well as provide training in how to function in Finnish society.
The reforms to primary education won’t be implemented before 2018, but the minister said that education authorities will organise primary education or preparatory training from next autumn for migrants who are past school-leaving age.
5. Integration for migrant families
The government also aims to reinforce integration programmes by ensuring that schemes for the integration of women, children and young adults receive support from social and health care as well as school officials. Services will be required to take account of the special needs of immigrant families, for example by increasing and upgrading interpreter and translation training.
6. Leisure activities and community organisations
The ministers said that efforts will be made to boost immigrant participation in hobbies and community organisations. Lindström and Grahn-Laasonen highlighted examples such as sports. Officials will also increase project funding for cultural activities that support integration.