Minister Nerea Melgosa deems it "Important to facilitate the integration of migrants to Europe to promote participation in community life and acquire social and cultural skills"
- Today, on Thursday, the first day of the High-level Political Forum on Migration was held in the Flemish town of Mechelen
- The "Sailburu" (Minister, original basque language) debated the "Role of host societies in integration," along with Kjetil Vevle, from Norway, Eda Silberg from Estonia, and Joanna Penn, from the United Kingdom
- "The welcome phase is crucial to provide initial orientation and to assess the migrants' needs; this will allow them to co-exist with the local population harmoniously"
Mechelen, Vlaam 08 02 2024
The Minister of Equality, Justice, and Social Policy of the Basque Government, Ms. Nerea Melgosa, deems it "very important to facilitate the social integration of newcomer migrants to Europe, since this entails promoting their active participation in community life and acquiring social and cultural skills that allow them to harmoniously co-exist with the local population."
Along with Ms Marta Marín, delegate of the Basque Government in Brussels to the European institutions, Mr Xabier Legarreta, Director of Migrations, and Ms Ana Reka, Head of Cabinet in the Basque Government, Melgosa participated in the first day of the High-Level Political Forum held today Thursday in the Flemish town of Mechelen, near Brussels. The Sailburu Melgosa debated the "Role of host societies in integration," along with Kjetil Vevle, State Secretary of Integration of the Ministry for Labour and Social Inclusion of Norway, Eda Silberg, Under Secretary of Cultural Diversity of the Ministry of Culture of Estonia, and Joanna Carolyn Penn, State Under Secretary of Housing and Communities of the United Kingdom.
Melgosa considers that "by facilitating social integration for people of different cultural origins, you foment social cohesion by promoting harmonious co-habitation in the society welcoming them. By addressing the needs of immigrants and eliminating barriers, we contribute to the creation of more inclusive and diverse communities that value plural perspectives and experiences."
"In an increasingly diverse world," added Nerea Melgosa, "effective management of cultural diversity has become essential. Social intervention with immigrants plays a key role by promoting inter-cultural understanding and fostering mutual adaptation between the local population and immigrants. This helps to prevent conflicts and build bridges for communication and respect between different cultural groups."
The highest authority in Social Policy in the Basque Country stated that they are actively working to prevent situations of exclusion in social integration processes. By addressing the barriers facing immigrants, such as limited access to services and employment, we reduce the risk of marginalisation and poverty. This not only benefits immigrants, but also contributes to a fairer, more just society as a whole."
"The welcome phase is crucial to provide initial orientation and assess the needs of the immigrants, laying the foundation for effective action. Public migration policies cannot only heed to designing administrative procedures and housing resources. Initial welcome must consider social inclusion and guarantee integration processes for people coming to a new place. This is precisely the foundation for the 'Basque Welcome Model,' which we will address in further detail during tomorrow's session," added Minister Melgosa.
According to Ms Melgosa, "based on the logic of the Basque Social Pact for Migration, offering what we would like to receive, the welcome model, aims to contribute to greater well-being and greater degrees of inclusion and participation for people reaching our land from other countries due to very different circumstances, just as we would want if we went to live in another country."