Experiences of Integration

Moving countries brings challenges. Migration deprives people of community until they build social links and find their place in their new surroundings. Migrant workers with secure jobs, steady incomes, and good command of English find it much easier to feel comfortable in local communities. They find it even easier if they are met half way, with acceptance and respect. Not everyone is so fortunate.

Immigration policies and how they are enforced, the length of time it takes to get the security of citizenship, lack of recognition of qualifications, workplace exploitation, negative attitudes and opinions, difficulties with language (including accessing appropriate and affordable English classes), and racism, can all contribute to unhappy experiences. Even something simple like crossing the border can be an issue for people who are subject to immigration control. Some people have health problems and an unfortunate few experience poverty and destitution. When newcomers are asked about their lives here, however, they report a great variety of experiences– many of them very positive as well as negative.