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New government should champion foreigners' rights, says ASTI
Luxembourg

New government should champion foreigners' rights, says ASTI

06.11.2013 From our online archive
The Association for the Support of Immigrant Workers (ASTI) has called on the new government to champion the rights of foreigners, from the right to vote to better integration in the education system.

(CS) The Association for the Support of Immigrant Workers (ASTI) has called on the new government to champion the rights of foreigners, from the right to vote to better integration in the education system.

Ahead of the October elections, the association had already demanded that immigrant issues should play a bigger role in the parties' election programmes. Now that coalition talks are underway, the group wants the new government to become active on a number of key issues.

These include the right to vote in national elections, which ASTI wants to see extended to include non-nationals. Additionally, the association wants to see the residence requirements for European and local elections cut.

In order to give greater political say to cross-border workers, ASTI has also voiced support for a suggestion by labour union OGBL, which would allow the country's professional chambers to submit bills for discussion at the Chamber of Deputies.

Furthermore, ASTI has warned that the reform of the law to gain Luxembourg nationality should not be forgotten. A reform was underway under the outgoing CSV-LSAP government, but the law never came to a vote.

Several administrative steps are now necessary to get the bill back on track.

ASTI also calls on the next government to fight for humanitarian immigration policies on a European level, as well as improving conditions of refugees and asylum seekers in Luxembourg.

With foreigners making up well over a third of people living in the Grand Duchy, the country also needs to make integration a focus across all areas, including education and the labour market, and not treat it as an isolated issue, the association said.

Finally, with NGOs making a significant contribution to the representation of foreigners in Luxembourg, the association suggests that active members of NGOs involved in official duties, such as working with ministries or advising parliamentary commission, should receive special leave for their voluntary duties.

To find out more about ASTI click here.