Legal Discrimination within Integration Policies? Paradigm of Activation and Educational and Work Experiences of Female Refugees in Germany

Monday, 16 July 2018: 18:45
Oral Presentation
Franziska SCHREYER, Institute for Employment Research, Germany
Tanja FENDEL, Institute for Employment Research, Germany
Activating integration policies with the paradigm of being challenging but also supportive have been enforced in several European countries. The Integration Act for forced migrants, introduced in Germany in 2016, is based on this principle. Before the law came into force, accepted refugees in Germany received a residence permit for three years and afterwards - when the protection reasons continued to exist - a permanent residence permit. Due to the paradigm of activation, today a permanent residence permit is only granted if refugees have sufficient German language skills and are able to secure most of their own livelihood.

The study addresses the question whether for female compared to male refugees it is on average more challenging to meet the new requirements. We give empirical evidence about gender differences in educational and employment participation as well as in language skills. The used data is based on qualitative interviews with 123 and quantitative Interviews with 4.800 adult forced migrants who came to Germany between 2013 and 2016. Theoretically, our study refers to concepts of legal discrimination and civic stratification.

Due to human rights violations, women have often been excluded from education or paid work in their home countries. In Germany their labor market participation is on average lower than the male one’s and working conditions are more often precarious. Thus we argue that female refugees have on average a higher risk to fulfill the new requirements for a permanent residence permit only together with a partner, only later or not at all. Their chances to move up within the hierarchy of the civic stratification are lower. To prevent the assumed legal discrimination within activating integration policies, it is very important to support female refugees during their integration process. Our findings indicate that currently gender inequalities in Germany rather seem to be proceeded.