Dutch-Syrian’s position deteriorating after seven years in Netherlands: study
Syrian-Dutch people are less well off in some areas than they were in their first years after arrival. This is shown by research conducted by the Scientific Research and Documentation Center (WODC), the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), and the Erasmus University Rotterdam. Previous studies have shown that the situation of Syrian status holders improved in the first few years after their arrival.
There are currently just under 150,000 people of Syrian origin living in the Netherlands. A significant number of them entered the country as refugees in the period 2014-2016. From this group, 3000 people were followed for several years. According to the research team, such a large group of refugees has never before been followed over such a long period.
Overall, it appears that Syrian newcomers deteriorate in several areas after an average seven-year stay in the Netherlands. For example, their health deteriorates, their financial situation worsens, and they have fewer social contacts.
Although more and more Syrian-Dutch people are working, the majority still have temporary jobs and welfare dependency remains high (38 percent). Also, two-thirds of women are not active in the labor market. More than half of them say they are short of money at the end of the month.
Most of the Syrians surveyed say they feel Dutch. Nevertheless, their social contacts, especially with Dutch people without an immigrant background, are decreasing. As a result, they are four times more likely to be socially lonely than the general population.
Finally, the researchers found that an increasing proportion of Syrian-Dutch people rate their health as moderate or poor. Compared to the general population, three times as many Syrian-Dutch feel mentally unhealthy. Almost one in three has a lot of stress, mainly because of financial worries, work, and health.
Reporting by ANP