Council of Europe recommends regularisation of irregular migrants
A large number of people, estimations speak of 5.5 million, live in European countries without valid documentation. They live in very precarious situations and are prone to have their rights violated. In its recommendation 1807, which had been adopted on 1 October 2007, the Council of Europe promotes the creation of regularisation programmes with prior analysis of the current situation and past experiences with such programmes in Europe. Many such programmes have been carried out across various countries in the past. The adversaries of such programmes fear that they create a pull effect for irregular migration. Those in favour, on the other hand, argue that they provide a solution for the human rights and human dignity concerns of undocumented migrants. The Council believes that regularisation programmes are a step forward to helping this group of people live decent lives and points out the difference between the concept of regularisation programmes, which are often targeted towards specific groups and general amnesties, which apply to all irregular migrants.
Switzerland should follow up
The Confederation of Swiss Trade Unions (SGB) calls on the Swiss government to follow up on these recommendations. According to a study conducted in 2005 there are 90'000 undocumented living and working in Switzerland. The SGB said in its press release that such a regulatisation programme should get under way in Switzerland before the new Foreign Nationals act and the law to fight clandestine employment enter into force.
- Regularisierung der Sans-Papiers: Empfehlungen des Europarates sollen auch in der Schweiz umgesetzt werden
Press release by the SGB from 1 October 2007 (in German)
- Resolution 1568 of the Council of Europe from 1 October 2007
- Recommendation of the Council of Europe concerning Resolution 1568
- Sans Papiers in der Schweiz: Arbeitsmarkt, nicht Asylpolitik ist entscheidend
Final report on the situation of undocumented migrants in Switzerland, April 2005 (pdf, 67 pages in German)