N-VA launches two legislative proposals on migration

31 August 2019

The N-VA is launching two legislative proposals for a more tightly controlled migration. It wants to monitor more closely who is granted asylum as a parent of a child born here and it wants to make the conditions for family reunification more stringent.

Proposal 1: checks of false parenthood

With its first legislative proposal, the N-VA wants to increase the checks of false parenthood. Already as of last year, the public prosecutor can check whether someone who is applying for asylum or a right of residence as the parent of a child born here does indeed have a family connection with the child. In other words whether or not it is a case of false parenthood, just so that person can get his or her hands on papers. Sometimes for instance, young mothers allow men without papers to pay them in order to have them recognised as the father.

The new legislative proposal would make it possible in the years following such recognition to check whether the parent is actually shouldering his or her responsibility, not only financially but also emotionally and in terms of a loving relationship. If this is not the case, the residence permit can be revoked.

Figures from the Immigration Office show that in 2017, 52,066 people came to our country in the context of a family reunification. This number is a total, in other words not only people from other countries of the European Union but also migrants from the rest of the world. Specifically for refugees who were granted asylum, there were 4,093 partners or children in 2017.

Proposal 2: stricter conditions for family reunification

The second legislative proposal tightens up the conditions for those wanting to bring over family members. Today, people granted asylum are given a year to have their partner or children brought over, even if they do not yet have any income - a job in other words. After that period of one year, it is only possible if they have a regular job and an income of at least EUR 1,500.

The N-VA wants to shorten that period from one year to three months. That is the minimum period set by Europe. In addition, the N-VA wants that minimum income for having family members brought over to be increased, and adapted to the size of the family. Today, there is a reference amount of 120% of the living wage (that is the amount of EUR 1,500). That should be increased to 140% plus 10% per additional family member.

“We think that everyone should always have to have a sufficient income in order to guarantee an independent, decent existence for themselves and the future family,” the N-VA says.

Looking upon migration more positively

With its proposals, the N-VA wants to do something about the skewed ratio between active and passive migration to this country. “Our country has a very high passive migration compared to active migration, in other words people who come here to work. There is a lack of balance.” The N-VA believes that regulated migration helps the country’s own population to look upon migration more positively. “In countries such as Canada and Denmark, the ratio is more balanced and the population has a more positive attitude to migration,” the N-VA concludes.

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