Bulgaria Adopts Norms for Integration Agreements with Foreign Nationals
The Bulgarian government has agreed the procedures for the signing, enforcement and suspension of an Integration Agreement between authorities and foreign nationals who were granted asylum or international protection.
The move will allow people granted asylum or protection to use a "package" of services after signing the agreement.
These "may include providing housing, kindergarten or school enrollment of accompanying minors, training in Bulgarian language, health insurance, professional orientation and inclusion of adults in training programs, inclusion in employment and training programs and measures, information of employment openings, etc," the government's press office says.
A vast majority of migrants granted status in Bulgaria over the past few years have repeatedly complained about living conditions and lack of job opportunities in the country, citing these as reasons to leave for Western Europe after a stint.
Under the document adopted at a regular cabinet meeting, mayors of Bulgarian municipalities will be obliged to submit to the State Agency for Refugees (DAB) figures with the number of foreign nationals who have been granted asylum or protection residing on their territory.
DAB will be tasked to prepare an "integration profile" for the foreign national in question while the protection procedure is still being implemented.
It will also have to inform the foreign national that he can sign an Integration Agreement with authorities.
The agency will be responsible for providing communication between municipalities and the respective foreign nationals, for each one of whom, upon their agreement to sign such a document, an individual integration plan will be prepared.
Integration Agreements shall be suspended in cases of death, imprisonment, termination of the status granted by DAB or non-fulfillment of conditions in the agreement on behalf of either side.
Authorities retain the right to unilaterally suspend an agreement if a foreign national "systematically violates public order; does not fulfill the measures under their individual plan; refuses to accept an appropriate job offered to him or his inclusion in employment and training measurs".
Integration measures will be financed through "European funding, international and foreign financial instruments, international institutions and organizations, national funding."
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