I’m an immigrant. I didn’t need twice as much income, housing support as native Finns…
It’s important what people you let in, immigration is to be a net positive for the host society from the get-go, not an immediate, expansive drain.
Kela: Immigrants require twice as much income, housing support as native population
Lower employment rates and income levels among the immigrant population contribute to the extra need for state support.
A study by Finland’s Social Insurance Institution (Kela) has found that immigrants in Finland are in twice as much need of state support compared to people born in Finland.
According to the study of 2018 benefit payments, state-owned benefits administrator Kela paid an average of 4,676 euros per annum to foreign-born residents and an average of 2,243 euros to their Finnish-born counterparts.
The study results, announced by Kela on Tuesday, found no great discrepancy between the two population groups in the receiving of certain payments, such as benefits for families, study grants, sickness allowance and pensions. On average, both groups received between 1,200 and 1,300 euros per year per person.
However, the biggest differences were found in the areas of unemployment benefit, housing benefit and income support.
On average, people born in Finland received about 900 euros while immigrants required much more support in these areas, with the average totalling about 3,300 euros a year.
Greater need for housing benefits, income support
A further breakdown of Kela’s figures showed that 34 percent of immigrants needed housing benefits, which was twice as high as the figure of 17 percent for the rest of the population.
Furthermore, unemployment benefit was received by 26 percent of immigrants and basic income support by 22 percent, compared with seven and six percent respectively for the native population.
Helsinki city councillor Suldaan Said Ahmed told Yle News that the background to these figures is the many challenges immigrants face in working life in Finland.
“The employment rate among immigrants in Finland was 62 percent in 2018 [the year of the Kela study], which was the lowest in the entire Nordic countries,” Said Ahmed pointed out. “This says a lot about failure of integration as well as the discrimination faced by immigrants in working life, such as the difficulty of finding employment and the prejudices and racism that immigrants face when looking for work.”