The human rights and fundamental dignity of all people who migrate from one country to another must be fully respected. While asylum and immigration are matters reserved to the UK Parliament, the Scottish Government is determined to play its part to support migrants, asylum-seekers, and displaced people in Scotland with fairness and respect, and to ensure that we can address Scotland’s demographic challenges and opportunities in a sustainable and rights-based way.
A) Population Strategy
In June 2019, a Population Taskforce was formed to create a cross-cutting Ministerial focus on the demographic challenges which Scotland faces. In March 2021, the Scottish Government published A Scotland for the Future: Opportunities and Challenges of Scotland's Changing Population, the first national population strategy. The strategy sets out the cross-cutting demographic challenges that Scotland faces at the national and local level and sets out a new programme of work to address these challenges and harness new opportunities across four broad thematic areas:
- a family-friendly nation – as Scotland’s birth rate is falling, we must ensure Scotland is the best place to raise a family;
- a healthy-living society – as Scotland’s population lives longer, we must ensure that our people are healthy and active;
- an attractive and welcoming country – as freedom of movement ends, Scotland needs to be able to attract people who can make a positive contribution to our economy, communities and public services;
- a more balanced population – with rural communities and those in the west experiencing population decline, while many in the east experience increased population growth, we must ensure our population is more balanced and distributed so all our communities can flourish.
As part of this, the strategy details the Scottish Government’s wider ambition to uphold and promote equality and human rights for all people. In this context, our ambition is to embed a human rights-based approach to welcoming people of all nationalities to Scotland, ensuring sustainable, vibrant and resilient communities now and into the future. By enabling and facilitating people to freely make decisions about where they live and the size of their family, it is our ambition for people in current and future generations to achieve the highest long-term wellbeing, while fully respecting human rights.
B) Support for Displaced Populations, including Ukrainians
The conflict in Ukraine has led millions of people to seek refuge in neighbouring countries, and we have taken action to play our full part in welcoming those seeking sanctuary from war. In response, the UK Government announced three visa schemes for Ukrainian nationals to enter the UK: the Homes for Ukraine scheme, Ukrainian Family Scheme and the Ukrainian Extension Scheme. The Scottish Government has pressed the UK Government to follow the EU’s example by waiving all visa requirements for any Ukrainian nationals seeking refuge in the UK, as well as mirroring the EU’s temporary protection directive.
In the absence of a visa waiver from the UK, the Scottish and Welsh Governments entered into agreements with the UK Government to act as ‘super sponsors’ as part of the Homes for Ukraine scheme. In so doing, we aimed to facilitate significant numbers of Ukrainian displaced people to come to our respective nations quickly. As of 11 July 2022 a total of 21,256 visas have been issued naming a Scottish sponsor – more than 20% of the UK total, and the highest number per head of population in the UK. Scotland is currently providing sanctuary for over 7,000 people, two-thirds of whom applied under the Scottish super sponsor scheme. This exceeds the 3,000 the Scottish Government committed to welcome when the scheme launched in March. A three-month pause on new visa applications for displaced Ukrainians to come to Scotland came into effect from 9:00 am on 13 July 2022. The pause on new applications will not affect anyone who has already made an application or had their visa granted.
Through our Warm Scots Welcome, we have brought together key partners, such as COSLA, individual local authorities, the Scottish Refugee Council and Police Scotland, to ensure the effective coordination of plans to address the associated practical challenges. This includes working with the UK Government to address safeguarding concerns related to the Homes for Ukraine scheme. We have established Welcome Hubs for people arriving at key entry points, to provide single points where multi-agency teams can triage people and provide support including healthcare and translation services, clothes and food, temporary accommodation, and trauma support.
We have also committed £36,000 to support a Ukraine Advice Scotland service, delivered by JustRight Scotland, which will offer free, confidential legal advice to Ukrainians and their family members who are seeking safety in Scotland. We have also provided £1 million funding to help the Scottish Refugee Council upscale their capacity to help those arriving in Scotland from Ukraine.
Separately, the UK Government are currently running two pilots with Talent Beyond Boundaries that seek to support people displaced in migrant camps to come to the UK through skilled migration routes. There are two pilots in the UK, a displaced talent mobility scheme and a route focusing on the skills needs of the NHS. These complementary pathways are an essential component to the international community’s response to the global displacement crisis. The First Minister has committed £83,000 to Talent Beyond Boundaries to support approximately 50 displaced individuals to make their home in Scotland. This pilot increases the availability of safe and legal routes to the UK for people in need of protection and affords refugees the dignity of being able to work to support their families and contribute to their new communities.
C) Seasonal Horticultural Workers
Between March 2020 and February 2021, the Scottish Government part-funded research conducted by Focus on Labour Exploitation and Fife Migrants Forum which sought to understand the risk of human trafficking for forced labour for people coming to Scotland as part of the UK Government’s Seasonal Workers Pilot (“SWP”) in the horticultural sector.
The research report was published in March 2021. The report aims to respond to concerns raised by experts on human trafficking and modern slavery during the development and launch of the SWP, and to develop strategies that can be taken by the UK and Scottish Governments to tackle the risks of human trafficking for forced labour associated with the SWP, to protect current and future workers, and to identify concerns from employers about the scheme.
The report also contributes directly towards two outcomes in the Scottish Government’s Human Trafficking and Exploitation Strategy: that people at most risk get help to increase their resilience against trafficking, and that victims are aware of support and trust it enough to ask for help. We have therefore established a worker helpline in partnership with the Royal Scottish Agricultural Benevolent Institution (“RSABI”) which includes language interpretation services and acts as an interface with partners such as the Modern Slavery Helpline and Police Scotland.
We are currently also exploring solutions such as reviewing the information and guidance that is made available to farms and workers in relation to working conditions and pay, extending local authority inspection and enforcement capabilities, encouraging engagement between trade unions and the sector to agree fair workplace standards and increase migrant worker representation, and aligning with ongoing Scottish Government initiatives to combat destitution amongst people with no recourse to public funds who are facing crisis situations.
We have also committed £41,843 to fund a Worker Support Centre to provide an enhanced package of advice and practical support to seasonal horticultural workers of any nationality. This builds on the existing support for the agricultural sector provided by RSABI but focuses on the particular needs of temporary migrant workers. The centre will be delivered by JustRight Scotland and will serve as a first contact for workers on the scheme, with referral channels for complex cases. It forms part of our response to the Ukraine crisis, in addition to the general Ukraine Advice Scotland service, which is also funded by the Scottish Government.
D) EU, EEA and Swiss Citizens' Rights
The Scottish Government is committed to protecting and promoting the rights of EU citizens living in Scotland. In 2019, we launched Stay in Scotland, a campaign to support EU citizens through the Brexit transition. As well as reconfirming our commitment to EU citizens, the Scottish Government has worked closely with third sector partners to help people apply to the UK Government’s EU Settlement Scheme. Scottish Ministers have consistently called on the UK Government to improve the Scheme, and in January 2018, we successfully persuaded the UK Government to drop its plans to charge £65 to apply to the Scheme.
The Scottish Government will uphold its obligations under the citizens’ rights parts of the EU-UK Withdrawal Agreement and the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement and also the Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement. We make sure that our policies, guidance and legislation fully respect the rights of European Union, the European Economic Area and Swiss citizens. The Scottish Government works closely with the Independent Monitoring Authority for the Citizens’ Rights Agreements.
E) New Scots Refugee Integration Strategy
The Scottish Government is committed to supporting refugees, asylum seekers and Scotland’s communities through the pioneering and collaborative approach of the New Scots: Refugee Integration Strategy 2018 to 2022. The strategy is led in partnership by the Scottish Government, COSLA, and the Scottish Refugee Council. The Scottish Government sees integration as a two-way process that involves positive change in both individuals and host communities, and which leads to cohesive, multi-cultural communities.
The Strategy includes a framework of actions across seven themes of integration:
- needs of asylum seekers;
- employability and welfare rights;
- health and wellbeing;
- communities, culture and social connections.
Delivery of the Strategy is being enhanced through the New Scots Refugee Integration Delivery Project funded by the EU’s Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund up to December 2022. The project includes a £2.8 million grant fund which is enabling 56 projects to spread documented good practices and to support innovation in Scotland under the objectives of the strategy, including promoting employability, education, health, and social and cultural connections for refugees.
F) Ending Destitution Together Strategy
The Scottish Government and COSLA published the Ending Destitution Together strategy in March 2021. The strategy aims to improve support for people who are at risk of destitution because they are subject to a No Recourse to Public Funds condition. The strategy’s vision is that no one in Scotland is forced into destitution and everyone has their human rights protected, regardless of their immigration status. The principles of prevention, partnership, and personalisation inform the strategy’s approach, and it sets out a range of actions in the areas of essential needs, advice and advocacy, and inclusion.
Asylum and immigration are matters reserved to the UK Parliament, including the operation of the asylum system, accommodation and financial support for people seeking asylum, and application of the No Recourse to Public Funds policy.
The Scottish Government raised significant objections to the UK Government’s New Plan for Immigration and the Nationality and Borders Act 2022. Measures set out under the New Plan and the Act will not achieve the outcomes the Home Office has set out, but will increase risks of exploitation and destitution. The UK Government plans will add unnecessary complexity to systems which are already extremely challenging to navigate and will put people in need of protection at risk. They are entirely contrary to principles of integration and support for refugees. Scottish Ministers urged the UK Government to make amendments to the then-Nationality and Borders Bill during its passage, and the Scottish Parliament agreed a general motion withholding consent on two clauses in the then-Bill which triggered the requirement for legislative consent.
The Scottish Government is clear that everyone who is resident in Scotland is entitled to access health care on the same basis. This includes all refugees, people seeking asylum and people whose claim for asylum has been refused. People seeking asylum should be accommodated within our communities with access to the support and essentials they need.
The Scottish Government supports the widening of asylum dispersal in principle, but believes participation by local authorities should be voluntary. The Scottish Government will continue to make the case for an asylum system that reflects and supports our commitment to integration from day one of arrival.
H) Devolution of New Powers on Migration
The Scottish Government’s January 2020 paper Migration: Helping Scotland Prosper outlines our position on the devolution of new powers on migration. The paper summarises the options for a tailored migration policy for Scotland and advances a reasonable, realistic approach with the devolution of some powers within a UK framework and joint working between the two governments on delivery. Tailored, responsive and humane migration policy can help contribute to Scotland achieving the National Outcomes with improved wellbeing and sustainable and inclusive economic growth at the heart of its purpose.
The paper suggests seven principles as tests against which to measure migration policy proposals:
- migration policy should address the needs of all of Scotland, including those areas most at risk of depopulation;
- migration policy should encourage and enable long-term settlement in Scotland, welcoming people with the range of skills we need to work, raise families and make a positive contribution to society;
- Scotland should be able to attract talented and committed people from Europe and across the world to work and study here without excessive barriers, and our migration policy should support mobility, collaboration and innovation;
- migration policy should support fair work, protecting workers’ rights, pay, and access to employment, and preventing exploitation and abuse;
- people who are entitled to live in Scotland – both international migrants and UK citizens – should be able to bring close family with them and migrants should have access to services and support to encourage integration into communities;
- the migration system should be easy to access and understand and focused on what a prospective migrant can contribute, not on their ability to pay – therefore fees and charges should be proportionate;
- migration should be controlled to deter and prevent abuse, fraud and criminal activity, including terrorism, human trafficking and other serious offences.
If agreement was reached with the UK Government on a tailored migration policy for Scotland with new powers for the Scottish Parliament, the Scottish Government would undertake public consultation in designing and developing that policy. Such a consultation would include discussion with communities, migrants, employers, trade unions, public services and wider civic society about the values that would underpin policy.
For example, some of the important values discussed through devolution of social security, such as dignity, fairness, and respect, could also be relevant in the context of immigration policy:
- dignity could mean welcoming people who want to make Scotland their home, people who want to live, work and raise their families here as part of our communities, as well as people who want to study, visit or work in Scotland for a time, valuing and celebrating the contribution they make to society and the economy, and treating them with kindness;
- fairness could mean putting in place clear rules that everyone can understand and follow, making decisions on those rules consistently and transparently, and making sure decisions can be reviewed or appealed – it could also mean preventing and identifying fraud and abuse of the system;
- respect could mean developing and delivering policies which have democratic accountability at their heart, with clear aims developed in conjunction with employers, representative organisations and communities – the Scottish Government would make decisions openly, explain decisions, and be accountable for them in the Scottish Parliament and to the people of Scotland. Under the current system, too many immigration changes are made without adequate opportunity for clear democratic accountability.
There is cross-party consensus in the Scottish Parliament about the benefits that migration has brought to Scotland and wide agreement that Scotland needs the powers to tailor migration policy according to our circumstances. We have worked closely with employers, trade unions, elected representatives and individuals to develop proposals to suit Scotland’s needs, and looked closely at international models to learn about what works in delivering a tailored approach to migration. We are proposing a cohesive, evidence-based approach that meets the needs of all of the country.
Asylum is a protection grantable to foreign nationals already in the United States or arriving at the border who meet the international law definition of a “refugee.” The United Nations 1951 Convention and 1967 Protocol define a refugee as a person who is unable or unwilling to return to his or her home country, and ...What percentage of migrants are refugees? ›
In 2020, when overall immigration was lower than usual due to the pandemic, asylum seekers might have made up around 12% of immigrants.How many refugees are in the world in 2022? ›
On June 20, our countries joined the international community in recognizing all those who have been forced to flee their homelands, which the UNHCR is projecting at over 100 million in 2022.What is the purpose of migration? ›
Some people move in search of work or economic opportunities, to join family, or to study. Others move to escape conflict, persecution, terrorism, or human rights violations. Still others move in response to the adverse effects of climate change, natural disasters, or other environmental factors.What are the 2 types of asylum? ›
Forms of asylum
There are two paths to claim asylum in the U.S. The affirmative asylum process is for individuals who are not in removal proceedings and the defensive asylum process is for individuals who are in removal proceedings.
She asked for political asylum. She was granted asylum after it was made clear that she would be killed if she returned to her native country.
Welcome to UNHCR's Refugee Population Statistics Database.
According to the latest available estimates, there were 280.6 million global migrants in 2020—representing close to 4 percent of the world's 7.8 billion people.What is the difference between a migrant and a refugee? ›
But is there a difference between migrants and refugees? And does it matter? The main difference is choice. Simply speaking, a migrant is someone who chooses to move, and a refugee is someone who has been forced from their home.What are the 3 types of refugees? ›
Types of Refugees in Human Rights
Refugee. Asylum Seeker. Internally displaced person.
- Chad. ...
- Democratic Republic of Congo. ...
- Jordan. ...
- Iran. ...
- Ethiopia. ...
- Bangladesh. ...
- Lebanon. ...
In 2021, 68% of all refugees originated from just five countries: Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, South Sudan, and Myanmar.What are the effects of migration? ›
Migrants eventually induce social, economic, and political problems in receiving countries, including 1) increases in the population, with adverse effects on existing social institutions; 2) increases in demand for goods and services; 3) displacement of nationals from occupations in the countryside and in the cities; 4 ...What are the benefits of migration? ›
For example, new families in an area can help sustain local schools and health services, fill skills gaps, build new businesses and breathe new life into communities. Migration can also increase diversity, raise awareness of different cultures and countries, and help to build positive relations between communities.What are 2 benefits of migration? ›
Migration boosts the working-age population. Migrants arrive with skills and contribute to human capital development of receiving countries. Migrants also contribute to technological progress. Understanding these impacts is important if our societies are to usefully debate the role of migration.What are the reasons for asylum? ›
Every year people come to the United States seeking protection because they have suffered persecution or fear that they will suffer persecution due to:
- Membership in a particular social group.
- Political opinion.
What is an asylum claim? To be granted asylum (to get refugee status), you need to show that you have a well-founded fear of persecution. This phrase is from the Refugee Convention.Why do people apply for asylum? ›
An asylum seeker is a person who has left their country and is seeking protection from persecution and serious human rights violations in another country, but who hasn't yet been legally recognized as a refugee and is waiting to receive a decision on their asylum claim. Seeking asylum is a human right.What is another word for asylum? ›
OTHER WORDS FOR asylum
2 haven, shelter, retreat.
country of asylum where: the applicant has been granted refugee status which still applies; or the refugee enjoys sufficient protection, including benefiting from the principle of non-refoulement (2) The concept of first country of asylum shall be applied provided that s/he will be readmitted to that country.
It is the right of a state to grant asylum to an individual, but it is not the right of an individual to be granted asylum by a state.Which country has most migrants? ›
The United States is home to the largest number of immigrants—over 50 million—which now make up 15% of the country's population. Since 1990, the proportion of immigrants in the country has continued to rise.What is the difference between a refugee and an asylum seeker? ›
The definition of an asylum seeker is someone who has arrived in a country and asked for asylum. Until they receive a decision as to whether or not they are a refugee, they are known as an asylum seeker. In the UK, this means they do not have the same rights as a refugee or a British citizen would.Which are the main countries taking asylum seekers? ›
These 10 countries receive the most refugees
- Lebanon – 19.8 per cent of the total population. ...
- Jordan – 10.4 per cent. ...
- Nauru – 6.8 per cent. ...
- Turkey – 5.0 per cent. ...
- Uganda – 3.7 per cent. ...
- Sudan – 2.7 per cent. ...
- Sweden – 2.6 per cent. ...
- Malta – 2.5 per cent.
The rate of population growth is the rate of natural increase combined with the effects of migration. Thus a high rate of natural increase can be offset by a large net out-migration, and a low rate of natural increase can be countered by a high level of net in-migration.What are the 4 types of migration? ›
internal migration: moving within a state, country, or continent. external migration: moving to a different state, country, or continent. emigration: leaving one country to move to another. immigration: moving into a new country.What is the most common cause of migration? ›
A major factor is war, conflict, government persecution or there being a significant risk of them. Those fleeing armed conflict, human rights violations or persecution are more likely to be humanitarian refugees.Who is called a migrant? ›
Migrant. While there is no formal legal definition of an international migrant, most experts agree that an international migrant is someone who changes his or her country of usual residence, irrespective of the reason for migration or legal status.What is migrant and example? ›
Migrants might be defined by foreign birth, by foreign citizenship, or by their movement into a new country to stay temporarily (sometimes for as little as one month) or to settle for the long-term.How is migrant defined? ›
/ˈmaɪ.ɡrənt/ a person that travels to a different country or place, often in order to find work: The cities are full of migrants looking for work.
There are different types of migration such as counter-urbanization, emigration, immigration, internal migration, international migration and rural-urban migration.What are 5 facts about refugees? ›
- There are 79.5 million people around the world who have been forcibly displaced—the highest figure ever recorded. ...
- About 1% of the world's population is displaced. ...
- 50% of the world's refugees are children. ...
- Developing countries host more than 85% of the world's refugees.
- Internal migration: moving within a state, country, or continent.
- External migration: moving to a different state, country, or continent.
- Emigration: leaving one place to move to another.
- Immigration: moving into a new place.
- Return migration: moving back to where you came from.
Gallup's updated Migrant Acceptance Index ranks North Macedonia, Hungary, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro – southeast European countries that along with Greece and Italy faced the initial waves of refugees – as the least-accepting countries for migrants.Which country in Europe takes most asylum seekers? ›
Number of applications per EU country (2021)
|Country ▲||Number of applications in 2021|
|France||120,685 120,685 120,685|
|Germany||190,545 190,545 190,545|
|Greece||28,355 28,355 28,355|
|Hungary||40 40 40|
The Syrian refugee crisis remains the largest humanitarian and development crisis in the world. Nearly 7 million Syrians are internally displaced, and 6.6 million have been forced to seek safety as refugees in Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan and beyond.How can we help refugees? ›
- Sign our Every Refugee Matters pledge. We want to see a more compassionate way to support refugees. ...
- Take part in Miles for Refugees. This June, every mile counts. ...
- Volunteer to help refugees. ...
- Use our teaching resources. ...
- Buy products designed by refugees.
You'll get £40.85 for each person in your household. This will help you pay for things you need like food, clothing and toiletries. Your allowance will be loaded onto a debit card (ASPEN card) each week. You'll be able to use the card to get cash from a cash machine.
Countries should promote stability, education and employment opportunities and reduce the drivers of forced migration, including by promoting resilience, thereby enabling individuals to make the choice between staying or migrating.How is migration a social problem? ›
The most dominant social problems result from the place of destination to within the place of destination. This implies migration within and outside the country. The major problems of migration include poverty, acculturation, education, social adjustment, employment, housing, and family difficulties.
|Migration Advantages and Disadvantages (country of origin)|
|Developing countries benefit from remittances||Loss of financial and informational wealth|
|Reduction of unemployment||Loss of skilled labour|
The expansion of the labour force, the increase of cultural variety, the filling of skill gaps in the labour market, and the boost to the local economy are the major positive effects of migration on host countries.What are the causes and effects of migration? ›
People move from one place to another for various reasons (war, persecution, to seek better opportunities, unemployment, etc.). This migration of people can result in consequences for both the place they left behind and their new place of residence. These consequences can be economic, social, political and demographic.Does migration help the economy? ›
We find that immigrants in advanced economies increase output and productivity both in the short and medium term. Specifically, we show that a 1 percentage point increase in the inflow of immigrants relative to total employment increases output by almost 1 percent by the fifth year.What is the difference between an asylum and a refugee? ›
An asylum seeker is a person looking for protection because they fear persecution, or they have experienced violence or human rights violations. A refugee is a person who asked for protection and was given refugee status. They may have been resettled in another country or be waiting for resettlement.What is asylum and how does it work? ›
Asylum is a form of protection which allows an individual to remain in the United States instead of being removed (deported) to a country where he or she fears persecution or harm. Under U.S. law, people who flee their countries because they fear persecution can apply for asylum.What is asylum vs refugee? ›
An asylum seeker is a person who has left their country and is seeking protection from persecution and serious human rights violations in another country, but who hasn't yet been legally recognized as a refugee and is waiting to receive a decision on their asylum claim. Seeking asylum is a human right.How long do people stay in asylum? ›
The length of the asylum process varies, but it typically takes between 6 months and several years. The length of asylum process may vary depending on whether the asylum seeker filed affirmatively or defensively and on the particular facts of his or her asylum claim.What is an asylum called today? ›
The modern psychiatric hospital evolved from and eventually replaced the older lunatic asylum.What is difference between refugee and migrant? ›
But is there a difference between migrants and refugees? And does it matter? The main difference is choice. Simply speaking, a migrant is someone who chooses to move, and a refugee is someone who has been forced from their home.
What are some of the benefits and services I can receive as an asylee? From the date of granted asylum, asylees may receive up to 12 months of RCA to help meet their most basic needs, such as food, shelter, and transportation.Who can get an asylum? ›
Anyone can apply for asylum. Normally, however, it is a person who considers themselves at risk of serious harm in their country of origin, or who is compelled to leave their country in search of safety in another country.What is asylum and its types? ›
The right of asylum falls into three basic categories: territorial, extraterritorial, and neutral. Territorial asylum is granted within the territorial bounds of the state offering asylum and is an exception to the practice of extradition.Who is called refugee? ›
Refugee. Refugees are persons who are outside their country of origin for reasons of feared persecution, conflict, generalized violence, or other circumstances that have seriously disturbed public order and, as a result, require international protection.What are the 5 grounds for asylum? ›
This module provides you with an understanding of the requirements needed to establish that persecution or feared persecution is “on account of” one or more of the five protected grounds in the refugee definition: race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.Can asylum get deported? ›
People can be deported while seeking asylum if they do things that disqualify themselves. A person can be disqualified for committing a crime, such as an aggravated felony. In those cases, they can be detained and the case can be expedited, but may only be eligible for protection under the convention against torture.Can you travel during asylum? ›
A person with refugee or asylum status who wishes to travel outside the United States needs a Refugee Travel Document in order to return to the United States.