Reflections on the integration workshop

Reflections on the integration workshop
Photo: Kyaw Zay Ya
With the support of Swedish Institute, NFGL members who have a keen interest in integration and human rights met with experts from the organization working with integration in the city of Malmo on 27th May 2017. NFGL member Kyaw Zay Ya reflects.

I was chosen to attend this integration workshop in Malmö – which was great as I’m very interested in migration, integration, and human rights.

Here are some reflections from the integration workshop:

It is important for integration to be discussed for a country like Sweden, as it has a large immigrant population compared to other European OECD countries. We have to find the challenges that must be addressed cautiously by policy makers at higher level.

At this stage, though Sweden has highly developed and longstanding integration policies, there still remain a few issues. In particular, immigrants often encounter challenges with integration when it comes to the Swedish labour market.

The one day event began with a presentation from the director of the Raoul Wallenberg Institute, Morten Kjaerum. We briefly discussed the vision of an inclusive society with the careful consideration of a human rights framework.

There are four priorities areas for Raoul Wallenberg Institute:

1. People on the move: enhance the protection and rights of the millions of refugees and immigrants.

2. Inclusive societies: ensure that societies are open and inclusive to all.

3. Fair and efficient justice: ensure that justice is accessible to all and that human rights are equally enforced.

4. Economic globalization and human rights: address the effects of economic equality and ensure that globalization leaves no one behind.

Human rights must be at the centre of an inclusive society vision; the needs and rights of an individual are considered and the core values are well defined within the society. Policy coherence and the readiness of knowledge, skills, values and motivation of the people in civilizations are needed to make the change and development in the societies. This is the start for the expansion of human rights in a global context.

Globally, the commitments and the advanced works of governments, international organizations, human right institutions, non-profit organizations and private sectors, and strong international collaboration play a vital role in safeguarding and promoting human rights.

Obviously, Sweden is an open country for the immigrants and marginalized people, and they are all working together for a better society, but the challenges and the hindrances faced by immigrants during the process of integration in the Swedish context needs to be explored by keeping a dialogue going both now and in the future.

Through the process of globalization and social movements, digitalization is inevitable. The role of skilled labour has diminshed to a certain extent and the likelihood of it diminishing further in the future alarms policy makers, experts and the civil society. The balance and harmonization of new technologies with humans is the ideal solution to minimize any possible problems in a modernized society.

To have a more inclusive Sweden, the invitational department and Kompis Sverige are working through a variety of events and activities.

The invitational department mainly organized the home-made Swedish dinner, which helped connect new Swedes.

Kompis Sverige aims to build a long-standing friendship and prevent exclusion; they want to blur the boundaries in the Swedish context. Their Buddy programme, as well as the various activities they put on help new Swedes fit in; it gives them the opportunity to  interact with each other, fostering mutual understanding and breaking the stereotypes.

At the integration workshop, I began to understand the core things that are valued both in the Swedish and global context. We had personal time to connect and interact with the other and the Swedish society; it was a great occasion to improve social networking skills and broaden ones perspectives.

In comparison with other contexts, the Swedish context guaranteed fundamental freedoms and expressions. We all can make the most of it with these rights and contribute to a more inclusive Sweden. In a such an enabling society, everyone is capable of making the change and the difference in the society as it is open and inclusive to all. We all have the right to a future regardless of nationality, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion and belief, language, or any other status.

By Kyaw Zay Ya

Master Candidate in Public Health Sciences (Health economics, Policy and Management)

SI Study Scholarship