The number of people on the move today is at a record high. When well managed, migration can benefit the migrants themselves, the host countries, the private sector and even the communities from which the migrants came. One part of an effective migration management policy is migrant integration and social cohesion.
While the term “integration” can be understood differently depending on the country and context, it is generally defined as the process of mutual adaptation between host society and migrant. It implies a sense of obligation and respect for a core set of values that bind migrants and their host communities to a common purpose. Integration is essential for all stakeholders, not only as a way of providing economic and cultural benefits but also for ensuring the security and stability of societies as a whole.
One of the main challenges of creating an effective integration policy is to make sure that it intersects with other major policy areas, including the protection of migrants’ human rights and equal opportunities, employment and labour-market issues, regional development, national security, social cohesion, public health, education, and naturalization and citizenship issues. IOM works with government, non-government and private sector stakeholders to address specific integration challenges, and to develop joint policy strategies and identify concrete support measures.
In keeping with IOM’s vision for successful migrant integration, the Organization’s programmes may include a range of components:
- Social inclusion of migrants and marginalized groups, including increased access of migrants to public services;
- Information about migration through established Migrant Resource Centres;
- Capacity-building and training, including pre-departure orientation and post-arrival language training;
- Awareness-raising, media training and educational curriculum development; anti-xenophobia campaigns and inter-faith training;
- Policy development; and
- Research and analysis projects aimed at improving existing migrant integration programmes.
Our activities within Turkey
The recent increase in the number and the diversity of migrants into Turkey reinforced the need for need for a holistic migrant integration policy and contributed to the development of a comprehensive migration management system. With the adoption of the 2013 Law on Foreigners and International Protection, Turkey has made progress in strengthening its migration management structure. Turkey continues to move forward to develop concrete tools and measures for migrant integration and the harmonious coexistence with host societies. As a key partner with the Turkish government, IOM Turkey is expanding and promoting its programmes in coordination with the government, local authorities, NGOs, migrant communities and private sector partners to better respond to the issue of integration and social cohesion in Turkey.