29 October, 2011

Welcome of immigrants : Angers at the crossroads between pride and realism

News analysis. - An Angers representative and several responsibles of associations complained yesterday about the difficulties they are facing for the welcome of immigrants coming from East Africa. Rose-Marie Véron, town councillor, reminded that "the welcoming of these refugies is a state competence". All the responsibles pointed out that African immigrants arrived a few months ago in Angers were still there because their situation had not been regularized. These statements raise several questions.

The local representatives and associations notice the problem comes from the fact the new immigrants add up to those who came in the past and are still in Angers because their situation would not have been yet regularized by the administration. It means these people had landed in Angers without fullfilling the legal procedures. One may ask if it was sensible to welcome these foreign families before the state authorities gave their authorization? Moreover, all these responsibles demand supplementary aid and a agreement to bear the costs from Europe, France, other cities and territories. If they were funded by public authorities, these associations should remind that their goal is to adjust their care to their material means and not to go beyond.

In mainy of the statements, the reference to France as " the country of human rights" appears. It sounds like if these authorities wanted to look more generous than others, ignoring if the necessary resources are sufficient to deal with the problem. While more and more Angevins are impoverished byt the crisis, would it be wiser to act according to the popular sentence "Charity begins at home"?

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