Almost one in three social welfare recipients in Norway are immigrants, and the proportion is increasing. Figures from Statistics Norway (Statistisk sentralbyrå, SSB) showed between 2002 and 2010, the amount of immigrants among welfare recipients rose from 23 percent to 30 percent.
The share of immigrant single mothers on welfare rose from 29 to 52 percent over the same period, reported news bureau NTB. The Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet, Frp), which supports restricting immigration into Norway, said the figures are evidence of failed integration policies over many years.
“It shows that we have not suceeded with integration when we do not get immigrants into work,” said Frp employment policy spokesman, Erlend Wiborg. He argued the social assistance scheme is practically used as unemployment benefits.
“Social welfare is emergency help,” he said. “It should not be that people live off social welfare. Frp has advocated compulsory activities so that those who receive social welfare contribute to the community. We cannot have it so that immigrants who come to Norway will live off tax payers’ money. We must provide an integration policy which gets people into work.”