Wednesday November 29, 2023
Govt mulls to reduce refugees’ reception allowance
Published : 27 Sep 2023, 02:12
The Ministry of the Interior has launched a project to examine the reception allowance granted to applicants for international protection and beneficiaries of temporary protection, said the ministry in a press release on Tuesday.
According to the Government Programme, the amount of the reception allowance will be reduced to the minimum amount permitted by the Constitution and the Reception Directive. The aim is to submit a proposal to Parliament for consideration during the 2024 spring session.
The project will prepare legislative amendments to reduce the reception allowance and spending allowance referred to in the Act on the Reception of Persons Applying for International Protection and on the Identification of and Assistance to Victims of Trafficking in Human Beings. In accordance with the Government Programme, the aim of reducing the reception allowance is to seek savings.
Stakeholders such as the Finnish Immigration Service, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and non-governmental organisations will be consulted during the project.
As part of the preparation of the proposal, an impact assessment will be carried out, paying particular attention to vulnerable people and children.
The reception allowance is a reception service laid down in the Act on the Reception of Persons Applying for International Protection and on the Identification of and Assistance to Victims of Trafficking in Human Beings.
It safeguards the right of applicants for international protection, beneficiaries of temporary protection and victims of trafficking in human beings with no municipality of residence to indispensable subsistence and care referred to in section 19 of the Constitution.
A spending allowance is granted to an unaccompanied child if the reception centre arranges full maintenance for the child.
The reception allowance consists of a basic element and a supplementary element. The basic amount is intended for essential daily expenses if the person has no income or assets.
A supplementary reception allowance may be granted for special needs arising from the life situation of an individual or family.
The basic amount of the reception allowance is the same for applicants for international protection, beneficiaries of temporary protection and victims of human trafficking with no municipality of residence.
No financial support is granted for accommodation, but accommodation is provided at a reception centre. Housing expenses are not taken into account when granting the reception allowance if a person arranges accommodation independently in private accommodation.
The reception allowance may be reduced if an applicant living at a reception centre does not participate as planned in the work and study activities organised by the centre.
Earned income also reduces the amount of the reception allowance if it exceeds EUR 150 per month. Asylum seekers may engage in gainful employment three or six months after lodging their application.