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Sweden and labour immigration debate

Moderate Party communication about labour  immigration 

Recently, the Moderate (Conservative) Party communicated about their new agenda concerning labour migration. Their arguments and proposals stated by party leader Ulf Kristersson and migration policy spokesperson Maria M Stenergard are the following: 

  • Since 2008 (when Sweden’s labour immigration law was made), a lot of things have happened. Many people are outside the labour market, and Sweden has one of the EU:s highest unemployment rates. Simultaneously, alarming reports about frauds and criminals who are misusing people are succeeding each other. It leads to mistrust against the whole system. 
  • Social-Democrats are claiming all the time that they want to do something about it, but the government has not made a single strong proposal in the parliament. Moderates want to take the lead. We believe that Sweden needs competences from other countries and the Social-Democrats have the chance to vote for our proposals and make a majority decision.
  • Increased wage demand. The current minimum monthly wage at 13 000 SEK is unreasonable and invites fraud. There should be more focus on the qualified labour force, so the wage demand should be at 31 700 SEK per month. Jobs as cleaners in restaurants should, to a larger extent, be able to be performed by persons who already are here. At the same time, seasonal workers fruit pickers have different demands and are exempt from this wage demand. 
  • “The work line” (arbetslinjen, labour policy) has to be reinstated. Therefore, we propose an overall benefit reform with a benefit limit, lower taxation on lower incomes and a step by step qualification in the Swedish welfare system for those who have immigrated to Sweden. 
  • Stop “the change of tracks” (when asylum-seekers can apply for work permits after having their asylum applications rejected). Moderates are also proposing that the possibility for a change of tracks is immediately stopped. It means that asylum-seekers that have received a rejection on their asylum application should not have the possibility to change and apply for a working permit. The current rules are encouraging frauds, and where people who do not deserve humanitarian protection are still coming here. They are also used by criminals arranging travelling to Sweden. 
  • Stop the labour immigration for personal assistants (caretakers, etc). Scandal after scandal has shown how big the problem is. According to the National Intelligence (Police), it has shown a clear connection between labour immigration and criminal organisations that are misusing vulnerable individuals, the welfare system, and Swedish taxpayers. 
  • Introduce self-sufficiency demand for family relatives. Moderates are proposing to introduce an actual self-sufficiency demand because it is unreasonable that everyone with a job-agreement in Sweden can bring their families without supporting them while getting access to the Swedish welfare system. 

Finally, Moderates stated that “Sweden has to reform labour immigration according to today’s reality”. Basically, Moderate’s want to see a “minimum wage” for labour immigrants.

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