A committee of the National Council wants foreigners who have been in Switzerland for more than 10 years to no longer be able to be sent back simply because they are receiving social assistance.
It was only one vote that the Committee on Political Institutions of the National Council accepted the parliamentary initiative of Samira Marti (PS / BL) this weekend (12 votes in favor, 11 against, 2 abstentions). This wants to modify the Law on foreigners “so that foreigners who have been staying in Switzerland for more than 10 years, without interruption and legally, can no longer have their residence or establishment permit withdrawn on the grounds that ‘they have benefited from social assistance, if recourse to it was justified, ”the commission said in its press release.
“As they know they are threatened with deportation if they seek social assistance, many foreigners give up asking for the support they need. The coronavirus crisis has further worsened this situation “, deplores the Basel elected official, who entitled her initiative” Poverty is not a crime “. These foreigners must therefore be protected from this outcome “unless they have deliberately fallen into poverty or have done nothing to get out of it,” she admits.
“After this first step, we will continue to maintain the pressure so that the commission of the Council of States also gives its approval, reacts Ada Marra (PS / VD), in a press release signed by the Alliance” is not a crime ”. “It is only in this way that these people, who have worked for years in our country and who are affected by poverty, can finally have access to our social system again,” she adds.