The Dutch Annual Report on Integration 2008 was published on 6 November 2008. This report, compiled by Statistics Netherlands, provides a factual overview of developments in the integration of various ethnic minorities in Dutch society
Gap smaller in education and on labour market
Although people with a non-western foreign background are lagging behind in participation on the labour market compared with both native Dutch people and people with a western foreign background, this gap is gradually diminishing. The second generation is catching up much faster than the first. Also, the income position of people with a non-western foreign background has improved slightly, and their educational achievements are progressing.
Relatively fewer children with a non-western foreign background than Dutch children are in senior secondary (havo) and pre-university (vwo) education. Most of them attend pre-vocational education (vmbo), and often choose economics oriented courses. This is especially true for Turks and Moroccans. Although the pass rate of students with a non-western foreign background in secondary education are lower than those of native Dutch students, the gap is closing gradually.
After secondary education, many students with a non-western foreign background move to further education and in doing so choose the highest level possible with their qualification. However, because their achieved level of secondary education is lower on average than that of native Dutch students, the average level of further education for this group is also still considerably lower.
Generally speaking, girls with a non-western foreign background perform better than boys. In nearly all types of education they have higher marks, experience less delay, are less likely to drop out and have higher pass rates. Boys with a non-western foreign background show higher drop-out rates. Turkish boys drop out most often, and thus have much less favourable prospects on the labour market.
Labour market position sensitive to the economy
The labour market position of people with a non-western foreign background improved strongly in 2006, and particularly 2007. Participation of this group increased by much more in this period than that of the native Dutch, while unemployment decreased faster. Among the young people with a non-western foreign background, the unemployment rate fell from 27 percent in 2005 to 15 percent in 2007, while for the young native Dutch it fell from 11 to 8 percent. Thus, the unemployment gap between young people with a non-western foreign background and young native Dutch became considerably smaller.
The labour market position of people with a non-western foreign background is more sensitive to fluctuations in the economy than the position of the native Dutch. One of the reasons for this is the relatively large share of employees with flexible contracts among people with a non-western foreign background: 21 percent, which is twice as high as among native Dutch employees.
The achieved level of education proves to be an important factor for labour market chances. The level of labour market participation of people with higher education levels in the four largest groups of in groups of people with a non-western foreign background almost equals the level native Dutch with higher levels of education. Therefore, to improve labour market participation of people with a non-western foreign background it is very important to raise the level of achieved education.
High crime rates among Moroccans and Antilleans
The crime rate for men with a non-western foreign background is on average three times that for men with western foreign background and native Dutch men. Moroccan and Antillean men in particular are overrepresented among offenders. Among women, those from the Netherlands Antilles have the highest crime rate, which equals the level of native Dutch men.
This overrepresentation is already observed among younger age groups. Moroccan teenagers account for the largest share of first offenders, followed by young Antilleans. Young Moroccans have the highest rate of recidivism: 89 percent of them are picked up by the police again, while this figure is 65 percent among native young Dutch people.
Higher concentration means less mixing
More and more people with a non-western foreign background move to homes in the same neighbourhoods. Higher concentrations of foreigners in a district go hand in hand with smaller chances for them to meet native Dutch people in their neighbourhood. This is becoming manifest in the larger cities in particular. As a result, the chance of meeting native Dutch people is getting smaller on average.
More health problems
People with a non-western foreign background experience more health problems than native Dutch people. On average they feel less healthy, physically as well mentally. This might make their social participation more difficult. The differences in health condition are smallest among young people.
The share of people with a non-western foreign background who are overweight and do not get enough physical exercise is larger than among the native Dutch population. On the other hand, alcohol consumption is considerably lower among people with a non-western foreign background.
Cultural gap closing
Distance between population groups is not always physical; it is also apparent as differences in norms, opinions and behaviour. In this respect a rapprochement appears to be taking place, especially as the second generation is much more oriented towards Dutch society than their parents. The distance to the country of origin is increasing. Speaking Dutch and educational participation are important factors in this development.
The Annual Report on Integration 2008 also addresses other topics, such as:
· Demographic developments
· Income and benefits
· Analyses of socio-economic mobility
· Immigration of new groups from Eastern Europe
The Annual Report on Integration 2008 (in Dutch only)
Key figure: B-61
Price: € 55.70