Study casts doubt on the usefulness of relocation bans

Relocation bans for recognized refugees do more harm than good. This is the conclusion of a study presented by the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) together with other scientists. According to the study, the residency requirement reduces the job opportunities of refugees and places a burden on the authorities.
Residency requirements have been in place in many federal states since 2016. In Baden-Württemberg, too, even recognized refugees are only allowed to change their place of residence in exceptional cases—for example, if they or their spouse work elsewhere or if they are studying. The regulation was introduced in order to prevent people entitled to asylum from moving to a few very popular municipalities, which would be overburdened by the amount of care required and the demand for housing.
“The administrative burden is high and the control effect is limited,” says the DIW. Following the new regulation, 30 percent of refugees moved within the first three years after completing their asylum procedure instead of 42 percent previously. Five percent moved to communities in high demand, compared to 12 percent previously. “The residency regulation does not benefit refugees in terms of their language skills, housing situation, employment or general life satisfaction—quite the opposite,” says Marco Schmandt, one of the authors of the study. Immigration authorities also complain about the high administrative workload.
The authors therefore suggest amending the regulation so that cities and municipalities with a particularly high influx of asylum seekers can impose residence bans. This is already possible, but is hardly ever used.
Great demand in Pforzheim. The magazine “Der Spiegel” has created a map from the data that shows the distribution of inflows and outflows. In Baden-Württemberg, only Pforzheim has an above-average influx of asylum seekers. In Heilbronn, too, the influx is predominant. Waldshut, Ravensburg and the Main-Tauber and Hohenlohe districts, on the other hand, have more people moving away than moving in. Across Germany, parts of the Ruhr region as well as Hanover and Kassel are particularly popular places to live. With a few exceptions, out-migration predominates in the eastern federal states.


Tübingen: Anschlussunterbringung im Breiten Weg. Foto: tünews INTERNATIONAL / Mostafa Elyasian.






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