Study: Shared housing for refugees limits integration

A new study has prioritised the need to integrate refugees in local communities. A task that is hindered by collective housing. [Takver/Flickr]

Currently, most refugees are living in shared accommodation. The Robert Bosch Foundation does not see this as a long term solution. EURACTIV’s partner Tagesspiegel reports.

Experts have suggested local, smaller living quarters for refugees. Collective living quarters are not only distressing for the people who live in them, but also limits integration in local communities, a study presented by the Robert Bosch Foundation said on Thursday (19 November).

The authors of the report, Jutta Aumüller, Priska Daphi and Celine Biesenkamp, believe that early involvement and participation of the local community, as well as integrating refugees into the population are the most important factors. This would lead to a reduction of prejudice and resentment against refugees as well as promoting faith in the responsible authorities. The assessment was carried out by the Technical University of Berlin in conjunction with the Institute for Democratic Development and Social Integration.

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Another important point raised by the study is the need to connect work carried out by volunteers with professional organisations.

In addition, the authors encourage local communities to help refugees integrate, through the organisation of social activities and volunteer work. Local municipalities should see the reception of refugees as an interagency-type task, where the promotion of housing and employment is made a priority.

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Last summer, the German Institute for Human Rights denounced the lack of protection for women who have fled to Germany. Its survey showed that 30% of asylum applications are filed by females. This shows that shared housing is often dominated by men. Accommodation solely for the use of women is, admittedly, currently impractical, given the lack of space and overcrowding that are the hallmarks of the facilities that are available at the moment.

This article was also published by EURACTIV Germany.

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