Finland Refugees


Oh and of course the politicians/bureaucrats pushing this on people couldn’t care less what they think, and use the well worn claims that rejectionists are ill-informed.

Yeah, and government is always right, 100% of the time.

Amid local protests, officials rush to open asylum seekers’ centres

With a record number of asylum seekers arriving in Finland this year, the Immigration Service is scrambling to quickly open new reception centres – sometimes sparking local opposition.

Remontoitua säilöönottokeskusta
Local governments have scrambled to set up accommodation for the influx of asylum seekers – in some cases renovating unused buildings to meet demand. Image: Yle / Vilma Hannén

Finland – like the rest of Europe – is receiving an unprecedented surge of refugees. More than 5,000 asylum seekers have arrived this year, well over last year’s total. The largest groups arriving in recent weeks have been from Iraq, Somalia and Afghanistan.

The nation’s 21 reception centres for asylum seekers are packed to the rafters, with all beds full and people sleeping on floors. The Immigration Service is hastily opening temporary shelters plus four or five more permanent facilities by late September. The next to open will be in Harjavalta, near Pori.

Last year, the state spent 54 million euros on reception facilities – this year costs are soaring above 70 million. The Immigration Service is seeking 18.6 million euros in extra funds from the autumn supplementary budget.

The head of the agency’s Reception Unit, Jorma Kuuluvainen, says the new centres will house at least 2,000 people. The current centres have 4,500 beds. The biggest need for new space is around Helsinki and Turku as well as up north.

Not in my backyard?

While some towns are welcoming the centres as they create jobs, there’s also opposition. More than 1,500 people have joined a Facebook group opposing a planned facility in the Halikko area of Salo. More than 500 have signed a similar petition set up online on Monday.

Immigration and Finnish Red Cross officials say that such resistance is often based on incorrect claims – for instance, that the municipalities have to pay for the centres, when in fact the state covers the costs. There is also no indication that the presence of such facilities has led to an uptick in violence, as some opponents have claimed.

Sources Yle

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