Immigrants with a weak connection with the labour market - who are they?
This report describes the group of immigrants who neither studies participates in the labour market nor receives health benefits. Consequently, they are not included in some of the most common forms of attachments people have to the Norwegian society. In all, 73,500 immigrants (20-66 years) were included in this group in November 2011, corresponding to a share of 16 per cent. The percentage has remained stable over the last three years. For simplicity’s sake, we refer to this group as persons with a weak connection with the labour market.
In 2011, more than half of the immigrants with a weak connection with the labour market came from Asia or from EU countries in Eastern Europe. However, these two groups are also the most numerous when looking at immigrants as a whole. In both groups, the share of persons with a weak connection with the labour market was just slightly higher than average among immigrants in total: 19 per cent among those from Asia and 17 per cent among those from EU countries in Eastern Europe. The immigrants from Africa had the highest proportion, at 22 per cent.
More than half of the immigrants with a weak labour market connection are women. The proportion of immigrant women with a weak labour market connection was 20 per cent in 2011, compared with 13 per cent among men. The majority of these women are married, while the majority of the men are unmarried. More than half of the immigrants with a weak labour market connection have lived in Norway for less than five years.
Even though immigrants with a weak labour market connection do not receive some of the most common types of income, 8 per cent of them received social assistance in November 2011. When looking at 2011 as a whole, 75 per cent received some sort of income. This may indicate that – at least for some – the situation with a weak labour market connection could be a temporary status. However, about 50 per cent of them had the same status in 2010. Furthermore, 36 per cent had the status also in 2009. One obvious reason for being in this group for a long period of time is that they are staying at home, being supported by other family members. However, the report also looks at the possibility that some may have migrated without notifying the Norwegian register of residents.