Policy and experiences of professional integration of young immigrants in the Walloon region (Belgium)

Altay Manco


This paper aims to identify obstacles to integration of young foreigners in the Walloon region and more generally in Belgium as a whole while presenting in a critical manner the actions undertaken by the local and/or regional actors and the public policies aimed at overcoming these obstacles. Since the 1960s, North Africans, Turkish and Sub-Saharan immigrants and their families have constituted the major component of non-European inflows into Belgium. It has been proved that youths of immigrant descent, in the absence of positive parental role models, often experience difficulties in breaking into the work arena. General initiatives that address the entire population groups experiencing difficulty with employment are inadequate as far as the social integration of foreigners is concerned. In order to go beyond local pilot initiatives and the experimental phase, the Walloon Region has set up integration policy measures for foreigners in the framework of the Centres rionaux d'intration (CRI) , created under the Decree of 4th July 1996. The action of professional social integration handled by the CRI gives an impression of vagueness in the accomplishment of its role: frontline or rearguard, socio-professional or general integration, local or "trans-regional work".


North Africans; Belgium; social integration; Turkish; Subsaharan migrants

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