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EDUCATION

Work visas may prevent foreign student exodus

Sweden could become more attractive to non-EU foreign students if it granted them the right to stay in Sweden to look for work after graduation, the Migration Board (Migrationsverket) has suggested in a new report.

Work visas may prevent foreign student exodus

Sweden lost more than half of its non-EU foreign students in the year following the 2011 introduction of tuition fees, according to the report.

Several other EU countries give students a window of opportunity to find work after graduation. The report recommends that Sweden look into the same option in order not to deprive the Swedish labour market of well-educated employees.

“If this reform is possible politically speaking, I don’t know,” Migration Board researcher Bernd Parusel told The Local.

“I can’t issue a recommendation, just suggest they look into it.”

The Migration Board also suggests that a student’s spouse be able to work in Sweden.

Some parts of the visa process have already been simplified for students.

“We’ve made it possible to fill in the residence permit application online,” Parusel said.

Allowing foreign students to apply for Swedish residence permits at any European Union country’s embassy or consulate could also be helpful, the report concluded, stressing the importance of closer cooperation within the EU to attract overseas students.

“In broad strokes, there are a lot of different rules across the EU countries,” Parusel told The Local.

The study will be officially presented at an EU conference on international students at the beginning of 2013.

Ann Törnkvist

Follow Ann on Twitter here.

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HEALTH

Swedish opposition proposes ‘rapid tests for ADHD’ to cut gang crime

The Moderate Party in Stockholm has called for children in so called "vulnerable areas" to be given rapid tests for ADHD to increase treatment and cut gang crime.

Swedish opposition proposes 'rapid tests for ADHD' to cut gang crime

In a press release, the party proposed that treating more children in troubled city areas would help prevent gang crime, given that “people with ADHD diagnoses are “significantly over-represented in the country’s jails”. 

The idea is that children in so-called “vulnerable areas”, which in Sweden normally have a high majority of first and second-generation generation immigrants, will be given “simpler, voluntary tests”, which would screen for ADHD, with those suspected of having the neuropsychiatric disorder then put forward for proper evaluations to be given by a child psychiatrist. 

“The quicker you can put in place measures, the better the outcomes,” says Irene Svenonius, the party’s leader in the municipality, of ADHD treatment, claiming that children in Sweden with an immigrant background were less likely to be medicated for ADHD than other children in Sweden. 

In the press release, the party said that there were “significant differences in the diagnosis and treatment of ADHD within Stockholm country”, with Swedish-born children receiving diagnosis and treatment to a higher extent, and with ADHD “with the greatest probability” underdiagnosed in vulnerable areas. 

At a press conference, the party’s justice spokesman Johan Forsell, said that identifying children with ADHD in this areas would help fight gang crime. 

“We need to find these children, and that is going to help prevent crime,” he said. 

Sweden’s climate minister Annika Strandhäll accused the Moderates of wanting to “medicate away criminality”. 

Lotta Häyrynen, editor of the trade union-backed comment site Nya Mitten, pointed out that the Moderates’s claim to want to help children with neuropsychiatric diagnoses in vulnerable areas would be more credible if they had not closed down seven child and youth psychiatry units. 

The Moderate Party MP and debater Hanif Bali complained about the opposition from left-wing commentators and politicians.

“My spontaneous guess would have been that the Left would have thought it was enormously unjust that three times so many immigrant children are not getting a diagnosis or treatment compared to pure-Swedish children,” he said. “Their hate for the Right is stronger than their care for the children. 

Swedish vocab: brottsförebyggande – preventative of crime 

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