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The government unveiled on Wednesday the main lines of its immigration bill, which it praised for “the balance”, between tougher expulsions and an outstretched hand for immigrant workers. This project comes after the murder of Lola, a 12-year-old girl killed in mid-October by an Algerian national under the influence of an obligation to leave French territory (OQTF).
Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin detailed to Le Monde, on Wednesday November 2, the main measures of his future law on immigration aimed at improving procedures and facilitating the integration of foreign workers. This law provides for the registration of immigrants threatened with expulsion in the file of wanted persons.
Scheduled for the first half of 2022, the bill aims to make the “obligations to leave French territory” (OQTF) more effective – a subject that has occupied public debate since the murder of young Lola, killed in mid-October by an Algerian national. under an OQTF.
“Now we have to be mean to the mean people”
“We are now going to register all the OQTFs in the file of wanted persons, the RPF. It is not a question of restoring the offense of illegal residence but of being able to note that the person leaves (…) and thus to count all the departures of foreigners”, explained to the daily the Minister of the Interior, whose government is criticized, in particular on the far right, for the low rate of execution of these measures.
“First, there are almost 50% of OQTFs that are the subject of appeals which suspend them”, defended the minister, reaffirming that he wanted to “greatly simplify the procedures” by going “from twelve to four categories of appeal” possible.
The Minister of the Interior also wants to end the “public order reservations” which “prevent the removal of people who arrived before 13 years” in France.
“If I had to summarize, I would say that we must now be mean with the mean people and nice with the good people”, he justified.
Searching for a “balance”
As part of the bill, which must be preceded by a parliamentary debate, the government will seek this “balance” by facilitating the professional integration of immigrant workers, said Minister of Labor Olivier Dussopt, in the same interview.
“And there is progress to be made since in the first half of the year, when the unemployment rate was 7.5%, that of immigrant workers was 13%. Work must once again become a factor of integration and emancipation,” he said.
Olivier Dussopt, for example, wants to put an end – subject to conditions – to the waiting period which prevents asylum seekers from working during their first six months in France.
The Minister of Labor also pleads in favor of the creation of a “job in tension” residence permit, to recruit in sectors which are struggling to find labour.
“Professional organizations tell us that they need to facilitate the recruitment of foreigners. We are offering them solutions with this bill,” he added.