Ukrainian seasonal workers will not be allowed to extend their work permits in Norway. The Minister of Justice and Emergency Preparedness cannot answer when they will be allowed to return to work.
When the work permit for Ukrainian seasonal workers expires, they will not be allowed to continue working. Instead, they must register at a refugee reception center and have their asylum application processed individually. While they are waiting for a new work permit, they must be prepared to receive social support from the NAV, Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) writes.
In a normal year, there are about 1,000 Ukrainian seasonal workers in the Norwegian gardening industry, according to the Norwegian Growers Association (Norsk Gartnerforbund). The organization asked the Ministry of Labor and Social Inclusion to uphold the rules from the pandemic, which enabled seasonal workers to get extended work permits.
“Seems so unnecessary”
“It seems so unnecessary. When you apply for individual protection, it takes a good deal longer. And then you no longer have the opportunity to work,” Tove Ladstein at the Norsk Gartnerforbund stated.
Minister of Justice and Emergency Management Emilie Enger Mehl (Sp) says that the government will ensure that Ukrainian seasonal workers who are already in Norway are allowed to work.
Opposition demands action
Both the Christian Democrats (KRF) and the Progress Party (FRP) reacted strongly to the limitations experienced by seasonal workers.
“I expect the government to immediately clean up here. If the Minister doesn’t arrange this within a few days, I will take up the matter in the Storting with the Minister,” Storting representative Erlend Wiborg, the immigration policy spokesperson for the FRP, said.
He says the case shows a “waste of resources.” At the same time, KRF leader and parliamentary representative Olaug Bollestad calls the situation “unnecessary.” She believes that the Minister of Justice and Emergency Preparedness should be able to arrange extended work permits.
“We have a good experience – these cases can be solved just fine without people being sent to the NAV,” Bollestad noted in an email to NTB.
Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews
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