Letter campaign to tolerated migrants in Baden-Württemberg

DThe withdrawal of the employment permit and the deportation of rejected asylum seekers who are in vocational training and are well integrated annoyed not only refugee initiatives but also medium-sized entrepreneurs in Baden-Württemberg for many years. In the first green-black government, the CDU used the subject of deportation to sharpen its profile – also to the annoyance of its own supporters. In 2018, 120 entrepreneurs came together to form an initiative because they did not want to see why they should first invest a lot of money and training time in capable refugees and rejected asylum seekers in order to later – after successful integration – have to watch the employees being deported . In response to the protests of the entrepreneurs, Interior Minister Thomas Strobl (CDU) announced at the time: “Obligation to leave means obligation to leave”.

In the second green-black coalition, everything should now get better. Justice and Migration Minister Marion Gentges (CDU) is now responsible for deportations. The regional council in Karlsruhe, which is responsible for taking in refugees, is currently writing to 10,000 tolerated persons on behalf of the ministry so that they can get advice and try to obtain permanent residence status. Because a Duldung is not a residence permit; those who are only tolerated remain obliged to leave the country.

According to Paragraph 60 of the Residence Act, the authorities can, provided the rejected asylum seeker has not committed a criminal offense and is employed, receive an “employment or training tolerance” for a period of 30 months. During this time, deportations are initially suspended. “We want to actively inform tolerated people about specific existing options for the right to stay – before they are threatened with deportation. You will be informed about the possibility of an employment toleration ”, said the state secretary responsible for migration Siegfried Lorek (CDU) of the FAZ

“Anyone who has done everything deserves a chance”

The refugees contacted would be asked to submit their documents and would also be informed that they could turn to the hardship commission in the event of a conflict. An occupation tolerance is not automatically granted, the rejected asylum seeker with tolerance must try to do so himself. After the end of the leave of absence, there is the possibility of obtaining a permanent residence permit.

“If someone came to Germany in 2015 or 2016 and was not returned to their home country because a lot of people came to us back then and the procedures took a long time, if they have now done everything we said for five or six years, learned German , integrated, looked for and found a job, if he pays for his living, then in my opinion he has seized the opportunity, ”said Lorek. The government wants to help these people so that they get a right to stay.

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Often the tolerated and rejected asylum seekers would not even know the requirements for permanent residence. Therefore, the lower immigration authorities should advise these people now. Lorek believes that this old case rule would not create false incentives for refugees who are currently in the Middle East or Africa and who are considering entering Germany. In Baden-Württemberg there are 30,000 tolerated people whose asylum applications have been rejected. The 10,000 people who are now contacted are those who have the prospect of staying. The deadline is August 1, 2018.

Discretionary leeway should be used

The Greens see the CDU’s new stance as a success of the coalition negotiations. The domestic political spokesman for the green parliamentary group, Oliver Hildenbrand, said that deporting people “for wages and salaries” was not just wrong for humanitarian reasons. His group welcomed the letter from the Ministry of Justice that it was in line with the coalition agreement: “For those who have been in the country for many years, have not committed criminal offenses and are well integrated, we will therefore use every opportunity in the country to enable them to stay.” The principle applies, whoever works and who integrates should be allowed to stay. The discretionary scope of Paragraphs 25a and 25b of the Residence Act must be used, the aim being “to enable these refugees not only to be tolerated, but to allow them to stay legally”.

For Hildenbrand and the Greens, the migration minister’s letter campaign is just the beginning. “In a second step, it will be important to open up new, national scope that goes beyond the narrow limits of the letters of federal law. What we need are realistic, practical regulations in order to effectively protect well-integrated people from insane deportations, ”said Hildenbrand of the FAZ. However, refugee initiatives have long been campaigning for people who have integrated well but who have only had tolerance status for years to get advice from the immigration authorities and to inform them specifically about their legal options.

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