Step for step towards professional competence

"Refugees and workplace integration"

On Friday the 19th of February, the Düsseldorf Employment Agency made a presentation on the offers and projects of the network "Refugees and workplace integration".

 Düsseldorf - An overwhelming agreement established that the integration of refugees in to the job market is a task that requires great cooperation and also is an opportunity for the economy of Düsseldorf. As a result, a network of the cities labor administration, city, economy, charities and labor unions was set up to ensure the cooperation of everyone and to take on this important task. The alliance is using all its resources and efforts to ensure the integration of refugees in to the job and education market. The Chef of the Employment Agency in Düsseldorf, Roland Schüßler, estimated the time period it take for this task to be successful: "Despite the cooperation of all local professions, the integration process will in many cases be a question of months rather than days."

The first step will be to assess the level of job professionalism and the level of education among refugees so as to translate everything for the German job and educational market.

Nearly all refugees do not have the sufficient German language skills therefore developing language skills will be the most important and first task. In Düsseldorf there are many opportunities to improve German language skills and the opportunities are continously expanding. According to the latest findings only very few refugees have professional qualifications that are good enough so that they are counted as skilled workers or more in Germany. However there are many qualifications, particularly those of artisinal type, that if presented and taught transparently many refugees could easily learn and then take up jobs in these areas.

 Schüßler thinks it very important to combine learning the German language and learning professions as one should try to integrate refugees as quickly as possible. The alliance (network) will help with this. Schüßler said: "Particularly when trying to determine the level of professional competence and then promoting skills our network has a wide variety of options to help. The employment agency and the job center are supporting the integration process with additional funds and precise orientational and qualification opportunities, this is is already being doing during the promotion of language skills.

 Chef of the Düsseldorf Jobcenter Ingo Zielonkowsky added "And of course we have enough financial resources available to enable the integration of refugees in to the job market but also to help our other customers with the necessary support to integrate them into the job market. This also counts for the integration subsidy which is an important instrument for the job market integration.

The refugee representative for the state capital Düsseldorf Miriam Koch also added: "The city engages itself not only with the accomodation of refugees but also help close gaps in education and language skills. We have a pot of money worth 750,000 euros that we can use in the situation when other promotional agencies are not available.

Managing Director of Düsseldorf's Employers Association Michael Grütering said: "I am convinced that we can successfully integrate refugees in to the establishments, there are already quite significant advances. The economy is ready to provide its contribution as there already plenty of examples of this. Aside from the needed language skills it is also required that the standards of our educational programmes are upheld even if it will take a lot of time for complete integration in to the system.

 The managing director of the Chamber of Crafts and Trade Dr. Axel Fuhrmann said: "Many craft and trade businesses want to help refugees that have prospects of remaining in Germany by providing them a first chance in the form of work experience such as a practical education or a qualified employment relationship. The companies can now register their work experience places on the new data bank for work experience on the website with a few clicks."

Managing director of the Chamber of Industry and Trade in Düsseldorf Gregor Berghausen explained: "Internships and entryqualifications are the most useful to integrate refugees into the job market. These give both sides the opportunity to learn about each other and learn to value and respect each other. This was the advice given by the Chamber of Industry and Commerce/Trade to its member companies. Furthermore, they support the integration of refugees into the job market by comparing educational degrees and qualifications obtained abroad to German educational qualifications. The aim of this is to make the degrees and qualifications obtained abroad transparent for the German job market so that interested companies and foreign applicants can find each other much more efficiently.

The city board member of the DGB in Düsseldorf Sigrid Wolf explained: "The large influx of refugees will change our education/qualifications market. For that reason refugees will at first have to learn our language and get to know our educational system. We can expect more refugees on the job market at the latest by 2017. We should not allow competition between those who have fled and German citizens, furthermore it will be necessary to have more educational places available.  There will be need for professional educational supervision through the agency and the job center."

Pastor Thorsten Nolting, speaker for the league of Düsseldorf charities said: "The Düsseldorf charities have for many years engaged themselves with helping refugees and in helping people with finding jobs and education. The integration of education and work is an important part of integrating refugees into society. It is great significance to start early with suitable offers like language courses, qualifications and support for those who are looking for jobs or places in education. We have experience that refugees are highly motivated when they come to us. The charities themselves as a large employer provide educational positions and internships as well as jobs in attractive professions."

  • Refugees
  • Employment Agency
  • Düsseldorf