Italy forces migrants to work unpaid for asylum

Thousands of migrants arriving in Italy will have to perform unpaid “socially useful” work to qualify for asylum and the expulsion of economic migrants will be speeded up under the Italian government’s new plans.
“It will be up to local mayors to decide what they do, and the work will probably be voluntary,” a government source said yesterday. A handful of towns in Italy already ask migrants to clean up streets and parks.
Under the scheme, which will be presented to parliament tomorrow by Marco Minniti, the interior minister, the work would become a precondition for gaining asylum.
Migrant centres have popped-up all over Italy in a bid to house just under 100,000 migrants, mostly from sub-Saharan Africa, who applied for asylum in the country between January and October last year.
The centres are suffering from serious overcrowding issues, while many train stations in upmarket Italian towns and on the country’s borders have had tent villages built up around them as migrants attempt to claim asylum.
During the average seven-month wait for applications to be processed, migrants are allowed to work.
However, most opportunities are low paid, cash-in-hand agricultural work.

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