• Sweden's news in English

Immigrants cleaning Swedish cities: report

Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 2 Mar 2010, 10:37

Published: 02 Mar 2010 10:37 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

In Stockholm, 80 percent of people working as office or hotel cleaners were born outside of Sweden, the new report from Statistics Sweden (SCB) for 2008 shows. In Gothenburg the equivalent figure was 59 percent and in Malmö 66 percent.

Foreign born staff account for 12 percent of all employees aged 16-64 in Sweden and make up 16 percent of the population.

While big city areas have slightly higher populations of immigrants - with 18 percent in Malmö and Stockholm, and 16 percent in Gothenburg, foreign born workers were over-represented in a series of professions such as nurses, hospital orderlies, personal assistants and child minders.

Of the ten categories of profession presented in the statistics, sales staff was the group with the lowest proportion of foreign-born workers - with only 6 percent.

The military, police, fire fighters and air-traffic controllers had a very low proportion of immigrants staff, the statistics show.

Story continues below…

Bus and tram drivers, choreographers, dancers and language professionals were all groups with a high proportion of foreign-born workers.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

11:27 March 2, 2010 by gaborien
it'd be very interesting to see another study cross-referencing the education and language skills that 41% of cleaners have, compared to their Swedish-born colleagues.
11:37 March 2, 2010 by peropaco
Just come to show that Swedes reserve the skill jobs for themselve even if they can find more qualified non Swedes including with the language skills.
11:40 March 2, 2010 by hpunlimited
It is good that there are jobs available where strong language skills are NOT required. The more of these jobs available, the better.
11:46 March 2, 2010 by Tutu
cross referncing my ------------ This is pure discrimination. We have lived in english speaking countries before and u could get job with your own accent provided u speak proper and correct english. Accent is now being equated with language skills ub sweden. if one have to have a swedish accent to get a job then that is a delibrate obstacle being put in place . what do we do with people from skåne or småland that have strange accents.
11:49 March 2, 2010 by adigunbabatunde@yahoo.com
@ gaborien

I can bet with you that 80-90% of the immigrant workers in this group (cleaners) have a minimum of bachelors degree. its the magic in Sweden
12:03 March 2, 2010 by bolababu
forget these people, they are just hypocrites. everytime you call for a skilled job, they always come up with some strange obstacle. i went to a swedish college, got my qualifications, speak swedish and all. whenever i call for a job, they always ask for some paper they think you can't get, i have surprised them like seven times by coming up with whatever they ask for but there's always something new. my swedish classmates at sea school are all already working but as an immigrant, i am not even on the waiting list despite having a ten-year international experience. seems to me that Sweden envies the uk and us's ghetto population and are on a mission to create their's at all cost.
12:34 March 2, 2010 by gookha
Advice for immigrants: Myself being an immigrant I advice all educated immigrants to look for jobs outside Sweden or leave this country for good. Of course the Swedes will be the happiest to hear this news...but its our lives and we have to find a better place to live....the question is for how long??? how long do we have to depend on odd jobs??? let these Vikings live alone....tsk tsk tsk....
12:55 March 2, 2010 by here for the summer
this is the same in every country. If you track the history of New York. You can see each wave of immigration and see the positions the 1st assume vs where their kids eventually end up. So what is wrong with this. You come to a new country with a new language you get a job which is perhaps below your capability. Your kids get educated in the new language and culture and end up running for office. This is the world.

My friend from the US took 3 years of language school and many jobs including a security job below his skill level and eventually found a place he's happy and loves Sweden and Swedish culture as do I.

I am shocked everytime I read these posts from people who live in Sweden at Sweden's generosity and obviously dislike Sweden and Swedes. It is really poor form and manners. To go to someone's house even move in and then complain about it.

Do something to help. It is rough economic time all over the world and it is getting worse. High unemployment is here to stay in the west and we all need to work together to keep jobs to be productive to help each other.
13:09 March 2, 2010 by square
I agree with (here for the summer) 100%. Some of the bloggers think every new immigrant is entitled to a VP position on arrival and then cry discrimination when it doesn't happen. Every country will look after it's own firt, and so they should. If Sweden is so bad you have a choice...
13:27 March 2, 2010 by gookha
So do you mean its no use learning the language, no use studying and instead take it for granted that immigrants will clean and thats all?? Common we are not fools and we can judge what is right and what is wrong...noone is complaining about anything else...
13:36 March 2, 2010 by square
No don't mean there is no use to trying but just stop thinking you are owed Utopia by Sweden. And yes you are complaining so go and find your better place to live as you are advising all other immigrants to do.
14:04 March 2, 2010 by tigger007
@bolababu! i have heard about the things that you are talking about. it's a shame and some people or employers will do this to you.i have a friend just like you that jumped thru hoops and when it came to get his PHD nobody wants to accept him into there phd program.then he applied at manchester U in the uk and got accepted,when the phd sociality in sweden found out they were like what?! that N%%%¤GGER got accepted to a top PHD program in the UK! all of a suuden they want him trying to open doors for him and he's like no,i'm in a top program i don't need you and your BS

@here for the summer! you really have a good comment! it's an old saying where i come from'' GET IN WHERE YOU FIT IN''. some people do complain about things and have not paid their dues,if you have NOT paid your dues then you can't complain! swedes do like to hire their own and will hire a less qualified swede then a highly qualified nonswede. they don't see this as being bad. another old saying''PROTECT US AND SERVE THE OTHER'' or in some people minds ''protect the swede and serve the nonswede. get this when a nonsweden does something wonderful(like solve a mathmatical promblem that's been around for 400yrs) then he or she is NOW a swede!!!
14:14 March 2, 2010 by gookha
@square, for your kind information, I have already left Sweden. And yes noone is looking for a VP position. Just a descent job...something that is related to your field of studies...if that hurts you...can't help....
14:20 March 2, 2010 by davo339
I seem to recall not too long ago someone in the government saying he is glad that immigrants clean poo... nice mentality. I myself have lucked out and have an IT consultant job. That is because the company i work for deals internationally so the base language is english and it sounds more 'professional' when you have someone speaking english as a native speaker.
14:26 March 2, 2010 by LailaC1
I'm sorry - have any of you heard of the recession? It is tough to find a job now - pure and simple. Deal with it.
14:36 March 2, 2010 by dsc
Sweden is obsessed with this topic of immigrants. Or is just The Local that is fixated on the "aliens" in Sverige.
14:38 March 2, 2010 by tigger007

who in the hell don't know it's a recession! it's about getting jobs for qualified people no matter where they are from. when a job opens up 9 times out of 10 times if it's a good days pay a nonswede won't get it! does the recession causes job unfairness?
15:22 March 2, 2010 by krrodman
The chef in one of my favorite Chinese restaurants in New Haven, Ct. had a PhD in chemistry from China. The job was well below his abilities, but it was the only job available to him. His son, born and raised in the USA, has a PhD and a great job at a university in the USA.

Every corner convenience store in NYC is managed by Koreans. They work 18 hours or more every day. Their children fill slots in the premier universities in the USA well beyond their projected numbers. Their children are the future leaders in medicine, business, science and law in the USA.

This is nothing new. The very same roads were taken by immigrants from Italy, Ireland and even Scandinavia over the last century in the USA. The newest immigrants take the base jobs so that their children may join the mainstream culture.

The critical question here is whether or not Swedish society is truly open to integration. I ask this question: What has been the experience of other immigrant groups in Sweden over the last few decades? How have the Turkish and Vietnamese immigrants fared? Are their progeny equally represented in university? Are they able to compete successfully for the best jobs? Or, will they forever remain "foreigners" in Sweden?
15:31 March 2, 2010 by gookha
I want to point out something here: Basically there are two types of immigrants - 1) those who go aboroad just to earn some money and come back to their country or try to settle down in that foreign country if possible and willing to do anything or any kind of job thats possible. 2) those who come to study and try to find a job that is close to their field of studies or those who are already highly skilled in their field before they come. This group don't come here just to find any kind of job and earn a living. They always expect a skilled profession instead of cleaning or laundrying and yes they often find a better job in other countries. So its this 2nd group that we are trying to talk about.
15:43 March 2, 2010 by livinginsweden

Yes deal with it , this is our history and country. Long live the king! leave the country if you don't like it!!

OMG ... i cannot believe this... I am shocked!!!

ha ha
16:19 March 2, 2010 by Kronaboy

Turks have faired extremely badly this is largely due to the fact that most Turks have muslim names so consequently tend to have an unemployment rate of around 45% in Sweden (as with other muslim groups) the EU average is 40% and 56% in the UK. With regards to education levels I can't comment on Sweden but with regards to UK again Turks tend to be at the bottom of the level (as with other muslim groups), but you have to take account most Turks in the UK tend to reside in run down ghettos with sub standard education facilities. However, interestingly in the UK civil service none ethnic Europeans tend to be disproportionately represented in the lower ranks despite the fact they are generally more qualified (educationally & vocationally) than their European colleagues?????
16:38 March 2, 2010 by Gurkhan

actually studies reveal that the Turks living in UK are usually counted as almost expatriates, coming from a good educational background and pursueing a better life in UK... majority seek further education..
16:43 March 2, 2010 by krrodman

Does the high Turkish unemployment rate in Sweden apply to Turkish families that have been in Sweden for several generations?

Needless to say, the USA is not a perfect melting pot for immigrants but many immigrant groups(Asian in particular) continue to successfully integrate . I am trying to get a sense of how well immigrants integrate into Sweden over several generations.
17:32 March 2, 2010 by skatty
@gookha has right.

Generally immigrants are mostly considered for unskilled or low qualify jobs in Sweden, regardless of their language ability, how long they have lived in Sweden an all other positive facts; however, some may get skilled or very good jobs with fair payments and all other things, but it's very, very rare under particular circumstances. I'm talking about academic educated immigrants (educated in or outside of Sweden) and not non-academics.

What I say is about the understanding of Swedish labor market toward immigrants, which has been stabilized for long time, this is not the story of a couple of years or a decade.
20:27 March 2, 2010 by Rahelli
even many immgrant if they working cleaning in sweden they are getting good money sweden is better than other countery also swedish people are so kind my self i am immgrant but i like to work in sweden
20:40 March 2, 2010 by trinaican

where is your self esteem dude?
20:46 March 2, 2010 by jazzIIIlove
Well, I'd like to avoid generalizations and honestly speaking, most Turkish people in Sweden are asylum seekers that immigrated in early 80s due to the coup. Most turk/kurt as ethnic are going there from eastern parts and naturally, unlike western region which is prosper similar to Switzerland; the east of Turkey lives in the conditions worse than Africa, they are pretty uneducated and even considered as potential hazard to the country and they (were forced to) immigrate/d naturally. But the very astonishing thing is there was a constant flow from the middle regions too, and unlike the early immigrants, they don't create their own ghetto, moreover, they bring the culture stuff from Sweden itself! I don't know whether this is occuring in immigration history but, you can eat swedish meatballs in Konya/Kulu and you can ride your bike in that vicinity (there is no special paths for bikes in Turkey except for this region) and Olof Palme park and some similar examples.
22:27 March 2, 2010 by Greg in Canada
"The critical question here is whether or not Swedish society is truly open to integration."

I don't think its fair to compare immigration to Sweden with countries like Canada or the USA. Canada/USA, etc were built on immigration whereas until 25 yrs ago Sweden was a much more homogeneous society. Also most immigrants arrive in Canada with a knowlege of English or French language (you have far more Spanish speakers in the USA who may not know English). How many immigrants arrive on Swedish soil with any knowlege of the Swedish language? So its obvious that there are gooing to be a lot more integration problems in Sweden.

23:17 March 2, 2010 by krrodman

Over the years Sweden has been openly critical of the civil rights issues in the USA. The suggestion was that racial issues would not occur in a more liberal and tolerant society like Sweden. As this blog indicates, immigration has brought real racial issues to Sweden. In fact, I think that Sweden is dealing with many of the same issues that the USA has dealt with over the years(eg violence and the problem of a permanent underclass), and is searching for constructive solutions.

I believe that once a person becomes a US citizen, they are an "American" regardless of their race, religion or creed.

When an immigrant to Sweden is granted citizenship, are they considered "Swedish"?
23:18 March 2, 2010 by Uncle
Free market decides everything. If these immigrants would possess amazing skills, companies would care enough to teach them Swedish and then use them, since money rules and dislike of immigrants comes after money.

The immigration from the 3rd world in Sweden is mostly uneducated (danes and germans do not clean streets). So what the hell is the problem then?
02:22 March 3, 2010 by Doing-Your-Mom

Sweep my garden (This is a command NOT a request)!
03:08 March 3, 2010 by Greg in Canada
"Over the years Sweden has been openly critical of the civil rights issues in the USA. "

Tell me about it. When I was a young guy in my 20's hanging out in Sweden in the Palme/ABBA era 1970's Swedes were unbelieveable in their self righteous finger pointing at the USA. In fact, it was then the fashionable thing to do. They criticized the USA for everything. Now that they've openned their borders to immigration they're finding out it's not as easy as they once thought. In my opinion they've created their own monster and integration will be harder for their society than either of ours.

I agree that in the USA an immigrant soon becomes an American quickly. It is something that is expected. In Canada it tends to be a hyphened label for a generation or two, ie Italian-Canadian, Pakistani-Canadian, etc, etc. but that's always been a part of government policy, at least for the many years when the Liberal Party was in power. I think its changing and have always thought the hyphenated new Canadian label was a bad idea.
05:51 March 3, 2010 by samuel1
The problem in Sweden is related to ethnic issues:

Does Sweden realize the true power immigrant population...No

Look at US....Indians r making huge amount of contribution in IT,doctors and lawyers etc.....In fact,they r the second most richest community after the Jews.

This is how you make use of immigrant population...nt to make them sweep floors or clean your city roads...with higher degree

In fact, Indo-US ties have thus also been strengthened by this very fact... that people have positively contributed to the society...with a healthy give and take realtionship.

The problem with Swedish society is that they wanted to be extra clever by inviting immigrants...to only to do the lower jobs,while they sit on top jobs.In fact,they wanted to replicate a German model of asking Turks to come and work as manual labors.

But with such protectionist attitude....and the inherent pride of being Swedish(donnow if they r also proud of the freezing winter,n impotency in cold climes)...

they will simply be lovin it...as the recession grows!
06:49 March 3, 2010 by peropaco
Sweden is a rapidly aging society and it is just a matter of time when they will be forced to use the assets they have marginalized for such a long time.
07:21 March 3, 2010 by skatty
I just mention, it's hard to compare Sweden with US and Canada as many do; generally the pattern of immigration in Europe is different with America, and for Sweden is even much more different than rest of EU!

Take a close look in EU, most of immigration in Europe base on some classifications, interest and historical influence of the main European countries on the rest of the world! It's more common to see Indian and Pakistani in UK, North African in France and Turks in Germany than other nations. Most of immigrants in Sweden where workers not academic educated and hardly anybody came for University in here. And mass immigrants in Sweden actually are refugees, who generally came because they had problems in their countries (mostly didn't know much about Sweden, it just was easy to come here and they came) in contrast with UK, France or Germany where had close relationship with their immigrants for quite long time. So, no matter if you are educated or not, live here for long time or not, you are just an outsider, who might be considered for some low qualified jobs! It's very hard to change this mentality!
09:32 March 3, 2010 by Kronaboy


the Swedish study was conducted by Gothenburg university and limited to Turkish males of working age and excludes females, hence the actual level is probably substantially higher. IZA did a similar real life study on males with islamic names and found a similar figure and reached the conclusion that it was due to racism; interestingly in a UN report the Swedish government admits that racism is a factor for the disproportionately high levels of unemployment amongst ethnic minorities. The Soros foundation recently did an interesting study comparing 11 EU cities, and similarly concluded Islamaphobia as the causal factor. As for UK figures Turks have the second highest level of unemployment after the Bangladeshi, Pakistanis tend to faire better, but they are more established and tend to employ each other, hence their unemployment level is around 40%. I'm afraid I no longer have free access to ONS figures so you will have to purchase them. With regards to UK Civil service figures on implied discrimination within the UK civil service, this was an internal study so the only way you can obtain the figurers is through FOI, obviously you will need term your question just right to get a real answer. However, it is interesting that Jews and Hindus tend to be overrepresented within UK middle and higher management tiers (i.e. the people who decided who should be promoted/employed); I don't know how much influence traditional biases may have played with regards to levels of unemployment for people with Islamic names.


I suggest you visit Hackney, Tottenham, Newington Green, Finsbury Park, Haringey, because its obvious to me you have never set foot in a Turkish Ghetto.
11:06 March 3, 2010 by peropaco
I am an immigrant in Sweden with an MBA from one of the world top 5 business schools. I am fantastically brilliant in roughly 8 languages. I do make a few spelling mistakes here and there in English and if I was supposed to try to find work in Sweden, most companies would not even bother to call me in for a face to face. Why? because my name is not Johan Johansson. That's why! I had a professor by the name of Spyros Makridakis and I remember he used to say countries that don't include their immigrants in their process will eventually lose.
13:13 March 3, 2010 by krrodman

Thanks for the information.

In this regard, Sweden is very different than the USA. While we certainly have our longstanding racial issues(great understatement of the year), most immigrant groups integrate rapidly both economically and socially. The Koreans are the most recent example of the trend. One generation ago they were underrepresented in our major universities. Currently, they are not only overrepresented, but are performing at a higher level than their peers.

It appears that the same sort of rapid upward mobility for immigrants is not available in Sweden.

I have always
13:15 March 3, 2010 by svenskdod
One point people are forgetting here, the job market is not the best right now for the native Swedes...
14:17 March 3, 2010 by Kronaboy

You have to remember the USA has been instigating positive discrimination for a number of decades, which has created an ethnic middle class; when my local MP tried suggesting I wouldn't want positive discrimination I pointed that I have had to put up with negative discrimination all my life why would I want something to try and make up for it. You also have to remember Turks are a hidden minority and the discrimination we suffer tends to be deliberately unnoticed, for example if the Jamaican community were to be labelled "dirty foul dogs" by the national education curriculum you would have outrage, but it is considered perfectly acceptable to do so against Turks????


you will note the figures I submitted are some years old released during the height of the boom years, bearing in mind we ethnic minorities tend to suffer disproportionately during times of recession it will be interesting to see what they have risen to when they are revealed in a few months time????
16:20 March 3, 2010 by Sjayna
'here for the summer',

Why are you shocked? Everybody who lives in Sweden have the right to complain and criticize! How come that the attitude of ams, the society is totally different toward me, who comes from Europe compared to people from other parts of the world, independent of education level?! Its UNFEAR, DiSCRIMINATING behaviour..You mention 'bad manners'...yes, there are many bad manners of the Swedish society.
16:59 March 3, 2010 by krrodman

There has been an influx of Vietnamese into Sweden beginning in the late 1970s. How have they fared?
17:34 March 3, 2010 by here for the summer
Some of the posters on this board are so educated and so smart and so educated and yet dislike sweden and swedes so much. Being the world is so big. A smart person should be able to find a place they like and live with people they like ..
17:53 March 3, 2010 by ronyasif
No future in Sweden,I appreciate gookha's comments.
18:16 March 3, 2010 by Rick Methven
Many years ago I had a friend who defected from an East European communist country to 'freedom' in Holland.

In his own country he was a famous surgeon and part of the elite. he had a house car family and a large disposable income for the country. He even employed a maid. He defected because he could not stand being told what to think and living in fear of being arrested for anti-system thoughts.

When he arrived in Holland he did not say here I am a famous surgeon give me a house a car and a senior job, He cleaned toilets in a hospital , studied to learn the language and to get his qualifications recognised. It took him 10 years of hard work to get back on the first rung of the ladder as a doctor back to where he had been 20 years earlier. He had no regrets because he valued the ability to be able to say and think whatever he wanted without the fear of prosecution.

To all you immigrants here who complain that you are better educated than the Swedes who get the jobs that you want, ask yourself 2 questions.

1.Would a Swede get a job ahead of you in your country.

2. Is the freedom that you have in Sweden better than in your country.

If things are better in your country of origin then go home. If life in Sweden even if it means menial work is better then stay, quit complaining and work to better your own lot.
18:38 March 3, 2010 by gookha
In fact the Swedes don't even like the idea of us sharing our thoughts and sorrows in this board. They are too insecure because they think the immigrants might take over if they are allowed to have white collar jobs. If thats not the case they would have at least supported our thoughts. Please...please..try to understand...we do not hate Sweden or the Swedes. As someone has already pointed out its something to do with integration amd YES its not really working. And if the majority of Swedes don't like the idea, how can immigrants survive? But no matter what you think there is silent discrimnation in Sweden and this has been proved a couple of times even in The Local. For example the case of buying apartments by immigrants.....etc. etc....
20:53 March 3, 2010 by skatty
@ Rick Methven

In the answer to your first question, depends to the job and the country; if the Swede is more competent and the country open minded to competence, then the Swede will get the job! Otherwise, either the country is not open-minded or the Swede has no competence.

In the answer to the second question, what price anybody pay for freedom depends to the budget of person.
22:18 March 3, 2010 by peropaco

I think people in Sweden are societal enslaved; meaning they cannot think independently because it will break all norms of the collective structure which has been in place for many generations.
11:01 March 4, 2010 by Uncle
doing-your-mom. Pay to me enough and I will make your garden, your house and your garage so clean, that you will be able to make a heart surgery right there.

AND (check this one out), I will not b!tch about it in the newspapers!
01:54 March 5, 2010 by Benzzz
This article confirms what I wrote on my blog 3 weeks ago. There's a MOCKERY OF EDUCATION IN SCANDINAVIA - http://www.zuzeeko.com/2010/02/mockery-of-education-in-scandinavia.html
03:47 March 5, 2010 by för30årseden
What is very clear is that Sweden has more immigrants than it has jobs. Discrimination is unfair competition. If immigrants are discriminated against, it is because they are competing with Swedes for the job. if you have any grasp of the obvious, that means that the only way to give an immigrant a job is to take it from a Swede. Why should the Swedes give their jobs to immigrants? Why is the immigrant more important than the Swede?

It's the same thing in the States. It was always a lie that the country needed immigrants. Employers just wanted them to keep wages low. So all the politicians run around at election time and promise to create more jobs and then they let all the jobs go to Mexicans. Labor shortage? Unemployment is 10%!
11:44 March 5, 2010 by Vidyadhara
@those who say they can't understand why expats in Sweden complain so much:

Well, you're missing one very important thing. It's not about them focusing on the negative aspects of Sweden, despite being so "well-educated". It's about culture shock. Culture shock is what most of the educated rabble commenting on The Local have to base their opinions on.
13:14 March 5, 2010 by SGJamie
From the point of view of one of the cleaners this article talks about..... Upon arriving in Sweden with a bachelor of science in education, I knew that I would not be teaching right away and working some crap job as I had at uni (to pay for uni). It didn't bother me because as long as I had work then I could help contribute to my Swedish husband's house payment and bills we shared. The cleaner who I had been buddies with at SFI told me they had an open position and it was mine if I wanted it. I cleaned a school for children with Autism for a few hours every day until I finally got bumped up to 7 hours a year later. Almost 4 years later I still clean schools instead of teaching. I have the support of other teachers that it would be nice to have me teach instead of clean and I did get a few sub opportunities, but the school cannot hire me as a teacher because I cannot get the license. I must pass Swedish A and B before even asking Skolverket and Högskolverket if my American degree is worthy of a license. That is the problem, Swedish A and B. It's not the principals' fault that they cannot hire me.... it's the Swedish education in my community. The Swedish classes are plain aweful. There is no structure, no formal lecture and no set class time for us to learn as a group. It is basically a study hall. We get a book, some work and a table to sit at. We are not taught anything by a teacher and we are expected to learn it all on our own. Sure we can ask questions, but I am so far gone that I have no idea what to ask. Sometimes the teacher does a short 10 minute lecture on some grammar thing, but you must be available at that time.

So if anything is the matter for newer immigrants, it's the deplorable education in this country. It is entirely up to us to learn the language in our own and for many like me who are so used to learning in a normal classroom, this is beyond tough... it's almost undoable. At this rate I will be lucky in 10 years if I learn enough Swedish to pass a gymnasieskolan level exam and by then, my education will be worth nothing as it will be 14 years old and I will have to redo university all over again here. So until then, I will keep cleaning up the crap of the school I work at instead of using my skills to prevent the crap in the first place.
13:50 March 5, 2010 by Iftikhar_Ahmad

Without immigrants, British economy will bleed to death.

Immigrants are not economic slaves. They arrived with their own cultures, languages and faiths.

Muslim community needs Masajid and Muslim schools for worship and for education on Islamic lines. They need to learn and be well versed in standard English to follow the National Curriculum and go for higher studies and research to serve humanity. At the same time, they need to learn and be well versed in Arabic, Urdu and other community languages to keep in touch with their cultural roots and enjoy the beauty of their literature and poetry.

There are hundreds of state and church schools where Muslim children are in majority. In my opinion, all such schools may be designated as Muslim community schools. There is no place for a non-Muslim child or a teacher in a Muslim school. Bilingual Muslim children need bilingual Muslim tachers as role models during their developmental periods.
02:24 March 6, 2010 by för30årseden

It doesn't much sound like you like or respect the UK. Why do you worry that the Brits will bleed to death without you? Why did you go? Why didn't you stay where you were?
08:51 March 6, 2010 by Kronaboy
No info on that one, probably not sufficent numbers to get a full picture bearing in mind the majority Vietnamese migrated to USA.
09:24 March 6, 2010 by Kronaboy
What you have to appreciate is that he is probably second even possibly 3rd generation Muslim migrant so he has no where to return to, and to be frank it is precisely the your sort of Uncle Tom attitude of not rocking the boat and being grateful for the few crumbs we are thrown which our parents have supported which has ensured our continued subjugation in the UK. To quote General Musharraf with regards to 7/7 martyrs “why are you blaming us, these children were born and raised in the UK, the question you should be asking is what have you done that they feel the necessity to blow them selves up to be heard”.
09:34 March 6, 2010 by Kronaboy
I absolutely agree with you, compared to the open hostility and bigotry we are confronted with in the UK the Swedes are absolute pussy-cats, for example there is no way I could live in a predominately English working-class neighbourhood, it would only be a matter of time before I had dog through the letter box. To be perfectly honest I find it some what amusing that those screaming loudest appear to be Ex-Pats from the UK who have just had a taste of what we have to put up with from them?
12:08 March 6, 2010 by skatty
Interestingly, many think that immigrant/refugees are going to take the job from Swedes, and job is a kind of privilege for Swedes or at least the white-collar jobs!

Immigrants have created many jobs in open-minded societies with a dynamic labor market. Generally, in societies like Sweden, where has a negative view on immigration, would immigrants be considered people, who get the job from Swedes. There are first generation immigrants in USA, who are Mayors, professors, highly potential people with very top positions, who contributes to their society in the same way that there might be criminals immigrants, who have negative effect.

There should be tried to active the potentiality and creativity of immigrants in a society, not to make them passive and hopeless like what is happening in Sweden!
20:38 March 6, 2010 by för30årseden
It must have been horrifying when those Viking slave traders came ashore and kidnapped you from your lovely native village. Isn't there some way that you could escape and make your way home? Maybe set up an underground railroad to Denmark or Latvia?
12:50 March 7, 2010 by Sjayna
'för30årseden', no, the immigrant is not more important than the Swede, and vice versa. It is very strange, that I have never heard swedes complain that the immigrants takes the 'cleaning' jobs...The Swedish immigration minister said some days ago: 'We need the cleaning jobs for our immigrants..' Was that the goal with the tax relief (RUT-avdrag)?!...to increase segregation and discrimination?! Very bizarr way to apply their so called 'integration policy'...
13:43 March 7, 2010 by Kronaboy
Many years ago I visited a number of Eastern European Soviet Block Countries (Moscow, Warsaw, Sofia, Belgrade etc...) and I was amazed at how high their living standards were and how easy they had it when compared to the ethnic Ghetto in London I was raised in. With regards to freedom of speech, I remember a couple of years ago a 16 year old girl in the UK was imprisoned for 18 months because she wrote Islamic poems on the backs of used receipts, and lets not forget David Irwing etc... Obviously as an ethnic minority from London I am accustomed to being detained and assaulted by Presbyterian Police Officers from Scotland; however the last time I was detained was particularly interesting; let me explain, where as on past occasions my detentions have always had to be justified on trumped up grounds of reasonable cause the last time I was detained on grounds of s7 Prevention of Terrorism Act which requires simple suspicion; when I enquired as to what those suspicions were I was advised it was my Islamic name. So I guess in this Utopian Europe of yours some of us are more equal than others. So to answer your question are you as a Swede more likely to be offered a job than me in my native UK, the answer is a BIG YES!
13:51 March 7, 2010 by skatty
Actually, what @for30arseden say is interesting about the Viking slave traders.

as a matter of fact the majority of immigrants who came in Sweden are refugees mainly from 80s and 90s, and found their ways in Sweden by human smugglers. A remarkable number had been accepted based on easy and simple regulations. I mean if Sweden where interested to stop them then it could do it, as it had done in mid 90s. So, there has been some interest to get refugees and get it easy (may be modern slavery with bureaucracy instead of Viking ships!). Practical Sweden can do whatever it wants with refugees (present immigrants) because they have no power in here!

I believe it's still not late, any government in Sweden can prepare an organization to manage and found out who want to go back or live as immigrant in another country and by a finance support and some support from the a second country get ride of many here!
18:27 March 7, 2010 by för30årseden

You make my point. There are some legitimate refugees among Sweden's immigrants: A few. And there are many fewer "Victor Lazlos" (the husband of the Ingrid Berman character in Casablanca) among them. Most of them came for the better pay or generous welfare benefits of Sweden.

When I was there in the 1970s this was clear. Sweden definitely took in real refugees from time to time. (Poland's Jews in the 1970s who are probably all either well and invisibly integrated into Swedish society by now or who have moved on to Israel or the U.S.) But most were just ordinary Greeks, Yugoslavs, Turks, and actually about half were Finns. The Saab bumper stickers "Made in Trollhattan by Trolls" would have been much more accurate saying "Made by Finns and Yugoslavs in Trollhattan."

These people came voluntarily. I think that it was a mistake to allow low-wage immigration. The alternative was to let employers compete for the less popular jobs by raising wages. The economy would have been smaller, but living standards would have been HIGHER and income would have been more evenly distributed. That would have been both more economically efficient and more consistent with Sweden's egalitarian ideals.

But instead, Sweden did make the choices it did. It allowed lots of people to come and accepted many patently bogus asylum claims. It pretended to need the labor of many people on welfare in spite of the obvious fact that they didn't work. BUT ALLOWING THEM TO COME IS NOT THE SAME THING AS FORCING THEM TO STAY. Many of them could safely return home, but choose to stay. That is their choice. They should not blame the Swedes. The Swedes were more than generous. Leave -- the Swedes can do without you. Just because they are kind doesn't mean they are your parents and have to take care of you. Why should they do for you what you are not willing to do for yourselves. They are not keeping you against your will.
20:58 March 7, 2010 by skatty

So, actually the low wage immigration has always been an aim in Swedish labor market in 70s, 80s or at present, when it particularly is interested in employing immigrants in low skilled jobs, and not high skilled jobs! This one isn't immigrants fault, ask the politicians to stop it!

You see the purpose of immigration is to get a better life, and not a worse one, it's why people immigrate! The vision, which had been created for many (by bogus asylum and insist of Swedish authorities to get cheap labor) was a better life for many; however, history has proven it would not be possible, and they who are going to suffer more would be immigrants, however, Many are already living in here and they just have to swallow down whatever unjust and discrimination, by being blamed that nobody ask them to stay here!

Nobody ask Swedes to be the parents of immigrants, and immigrants don't need Swedes as parents. Immigrants are looking for a fair non-discriminative society to work, to pay tax, to be part of the whole, but with Swedish attitude of "Swedes can do without you", it would not be possible. Swedes can't do without immigrants; ask it from your politicians, who trapped immigrants in here, by generous welfare!
01:54 March 8, 2010 by för30årseden

Some legal and illegal immigrants do return. But you really have to come up with an astonishingly racist definition of the stupidity of immigrants to say that it was Sweden's fault for not deterring them from coming. What did the Swedes have to do to keep them out? Put cross firing machine guns at the border? The Swedes aren't preventing them from leaving.

They can go home even if the Swedes don't make them. THEY PREFER NOT TO GO HOME. In a few cases it is because the other tribe or religion will persecute or kill them (the few legitimate refugees). In some cases they don't want to live like people like them (and then they complain that the Swedes don't want to live with people like them either). But they really don't want to live with Swedes either and they certainly don't want their daughters to marry a Swede.

Their problem is that they come from a place where the average person has 100 first cousins. So there is no work and no economic opportunity. So they go to Sweden to get what the Swedes have. The Swedes don't want to give what they have away.

If the Swedes really needed immigrants, there would be no discrimination. Discrimination is unfair competition. So anytime discrimination occurs, the immigrant was competing against a Swede. If an employer has three jobs and only two applicants - he can't discriminate.

I understand and sympathize that immigrants to Sweden only want: "..a fair non-discriminative society to work, to pay tax, to be part of the whole, but with Swedish attitude of 'Swedes can do without you', it would not be possible." If you don't think that Sweden is like that, the Swedes won't hold you against your will. Take your Swedish education and help your homeland. Make it a place that is "..a fair non-discriminative society to work, to pay tax, to be part of the whole" But it's not the Swedes' fault if you are one of 100 grandchildren. That's your grandparents' fault.
07:07 March 8, 2010 by skatty

Of course, some prefer not to go home, but I don't think, it's because they find life interesting in here, I believe mostly don't try even to think about it any more, and just accept the facts of their life. One problem is that the hands of refugees are closed; they can't just pack and go back! Another problem is time and the fact that life is limited, for many who have lived for many years in Sweden, it is just hard to go back (however, I don't think you understand it); who knows may be many go back in future, or some find somewhere else to live!
07:50 March 8, 2010 by för30årseden

I think that I can understand why it's so hard to go back. I never came to stay. I only came to study and then I returned home. But I knew and befriended many jävla utlänningar, some of whom are still there and some went home (I've lost touch with almost all -- there was no e-mail then).

My point is that you shouldn't blame the Swedes, except for a small group of ideologues who wanted to build a "multicultural Sweden." Multicultural Sweden is an oxymoron. But they wanted to do that because it was fashionable. (Swedish socialists, especially the feminists, are so fashionable.) But they especially wanted to do it because the U.S. was supposedly doing it and they wanted to do it show the U.S. that they could do it better. But most Swedes were just trying to be generous and it didn't work. They really didn't want to give away their own jobs and standard of living. But the foreigners didn't want to clean toilets either.
09:18 March 8, 2010 by skatty

So, I can just say that you are a lucky person to come to Sweden to study and go back, because many immigrants have stuck in Sweden, and can do nothing, even when they want to do something!
00:50 March 9, 2010 by för30årseden

Yes, I was twice lucky. Lucky to go there and enjoy a good education. Lucky to have someplace to return home. I'm just saying, if you home is a hell hole, don't blame the Swedes. Blame your countrymen.
Today's headlines
Löfven: 'Sweden will double its number of troops in Iraq'
Stefan Löfven and Haider al-Abadi during the visit on Monday. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has promised to double his country's number of troops in Iraq following a meeting with Iraqi counterpart Haider al-Abadi on Monday.

Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
Should Swedes think fairtrade with porn? Photo: Karin Malmhav/SvD/TT

A fairtrade attitude to pornography would be beneficial, Sweden's health minister told The Local.

Presented by Stockholm University
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

Nordic fashion took centre stage in the Swedish capital last week as Stockholm University hosted the “first-ever” academic conference looking at luxury and sustainability in the fashion industry.

Referee, coach and parents in Swedish youth football fight
File photo of a referee holding a red card not related to the story. Photo: Stefan Jerrevång/TT

A football dad broke his leg in the brawl in front of 11-year-old kids after a Hammarby youth football game.

Illicit abattoir kept more than 100 bulls' penises
A couple of young bulls not related to the story. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Dried cattle genitalia, goats' heads and hundreds of litres of lard were just a few of the many strange finds discovered when police raided a property in Sweden.

This is officially Sweden's most beautiful beard
The most beautiful beard in Sweden. Photo: Memo Göcek

According to a jury of barbers and 'well known bearded profiles', that is.

Presented by Invest Stockholm
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm

You might think it’s hard to make friends in a new city. But if at first you don’t succeed – try something else!

Injured Swedish photographer protected by 'guardian angel'
Swedish photographer Paul Hansen on another occasion. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Photographer Paul Hansen thanked his lucky stars for surviving sniper fire while covering the battle for the Isis-held city of Mosul in Iraq.

How Sweden is trying to smooth relations with Saudis
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven meeting Saudi Arabia's Trade Minister Majid bin Abdullah Al Qasabi. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has visited Saudi Arabia a year and a half after relations turned frosty in a major diplomatic row.

My Swedish Career
'Swedish people love it, but they find it quite odd'
Scottish entrepreneur William Macdonald. Photo: Michael Campanella

Meet the web developer and entrepreneur using traditional Scottish ceilidh dancing to break the ice with Swedes.

Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available