Non-Western migrants suffer most during Dutch crisis

Non-Western migrants suffer most during Dutch crisis

The financial crisis has had a stronger impact on non-Western migrants in the Netherlands than on the native Dutch population.

This insight comes from the Netherlands Institute for Social Research’s (SCP) 2013 Integration report, which was compiled on request of the Ministry of Social Affairs.

Triple the unemployment rate among foreigners

According to the report, the unemployment rate of non-Western migrants in the Netherlands is three times as high (16 per cent) as that of people of native Dutch descent (five per cent). Young people suffer even more; 28 per cent of foreign youth are unemployed, compared to 10 per cent of native Dutch youth.

Migrants with Moroccan roots appear to be the worst off, especially those who have dropped out of school. However, even when compared to Dutch natives with equal qualifications, Moroccans have a more difficult time finding work.

Young non-Western graduates face discrimination

Non-Western migrants face many more challenges when it comes to the Dutch labour market. While employers may not always consciously discriminate against non-native Dutch, prejudice is a common reality for many migrants.

It is not just uneducated migrants who have difficulty finding work. Among the native Dutch, just five per cent of MBO (vocational training) graduates were still unemployed a year and a half following graduation, whereas this number was 19 per cent among youth with foreign origins. When compared to young graduates with a HBO (college) degree, these statistics are six and 15 per cent, respectively.

Poverty a reality for many

The average income of non-Western migrants lags behind that of native Dutch citizens. The latter earn approximately 25.000 euros annually, while the former garner an average of 18.000.

An estimated one in seven non-Western adult migrants live in poverty. For children, this figure is one in four, quadruple the poverty rate of native Dutch children.

When it comes to refugees in the Netherlands, many rely on welfare to survive. This is certainly the case with Somalian refugees; half of the population living in the country receives benefits. In general, native Dutch are much less dependent on welfare assistance; two per cent receive benefits as opposed to 12 per cent of non-Western migrants.

Despite these figures, the education level among non-Western migrants is on the rise. Since 2001, the rate of highly-professional migrants grew from 19 to 24 per cent.

Sources: Volkskrant, NOS

Ellen Keith


Ellen Keith

A Canadian with Dutch roots, Ellen has had half her heart in the Netherlands since the day she was born. After years of visits and studying abroad, she finally made...

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