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French Senate Adopts a Stricter Immigration Law: What Are the Key Proposals?

Introduction to the Stricter French Immigration Law

The French Senate recently embraced a version of a law project aiming to intensify supervision over immigration and tighten the conditions for residency and citizenship grants. This adopted legislation signifies a move towards more stringent regulations within France’s immigration framework. The National Assembly is expected to commence its deliberation on this law project in approximately a month before its formal approval by the government.

Tightening Residency and Citizenship Requirements

The Senate’s recent adoption of a stricter immigration law marks a pivotal step in reshaping France’s immigration policies. Notable amendments within this legislation pertain to residency and citizenship criteria:

Residency Criteria:

One of the significant amendments involves the requirement for obtaining a multi-year residency permit, necessitating proficiency in the French language post an assessment of language skills. Additionally, it emphasizes enhanced surveillance over student immigration by making the issuance of the initial residency permit contingent upon the presentation of a financial deposit to cover transportation costs in the event of fraud.

Furthermore, the reinstatement of penalties for “illegal residency” has been proposed, which entails imposing a fine of 3,750 euros on individuals present in French territory without valid residency documents.

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Citizenship Criteria:

The proposed alterations in citizenship criteria encompass several pivotal changes, including:

The revocation of the “right of soil” law allowing children born in France to foreign parents to acquire French citizenship upon reaching adulthood.
Extension of the residency duration from five to ten years before eligibility for French citizenship application.
Revocation of citizenship in cases of attempted or committed murder against law enforcement personnel or individuals holding public authority.

Refugee Status and Family Reunification

The law also addresses refugee status and family reunification, introducing amendments such as:

Immediate issue of an order to leave French territory upon the rejection of the asylum seeker’s initial application, nullifying comprehensive health protection and legally obligating their departure from reception centers for asylum seekers.
Stringent conditions for family reunification by extending the residency requirement from 18 months to 24 months, thereby restricting family reunification until two years of residency in France.

Social and Health Support Revisions

The proposed changes encompass revisions in social and health support:

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Revocation of social security benefits for foreigners upon the issuance of residency rejection or withdrawal orders, or deportation decisions.
Toughening the criteria for accessing specific social benefits, including family assistance and personal housing aid, by imposing a requirement of consistent residency in France for five years, as opposed to the current six-month duration.
Replacement of the Government Medical Assistance (AME) with “emergency medical assistance,” specifically designed for pregnant women, offering essential vaccinations, and addressing “life-threatening illnesses.”
Impact on Employment
The law further prohibits the registration and utilization of the employment office’s services in the event of residency rejection, withdrawal, or deportation decisions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: When will the French National Assembly commence deliberation on this law project?
The National Assembly is scheduled to commence its deliberation on this law project approximately one month from now.

Q: What is the key aim of the Senate in adopting this stricter immigration law?
The Senate aims to tighten residency and citizenship conditions, redefining the landscape of France’s immigration policies.

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Q: What are the significant changes proposed regarding residency requirements for citizenship?
The proposed changes include a mandatory language proficiency test and an extended residency duration before eligibility for French citizenship.

Q: How does the law address refugee status and family reunification?
The law proposes immediate deportation orders upon initial asylum application rejection and extends the residency requirement for family reunification to 24 months.

Q: Are there changes in social and health support for immigrants under this law?
Yes, the law proposes revisions in social security benefits and toughens criteria for accessing specific social benefits.

Q: What impact will this law have on employment for immigrants?
The law restricts access to employment office services in case of residency rejection, withdrawal, or deportation decisions.

The French Senate’s adoption of this stricter immigration law reflects a significant shift in France’s approach to immigration, primarily focusing on stringent residency and citizenship criteria, as well as social and health support revisions. These proposed changes, once approved, will shape the country’s immigration landscape significantly.

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Midou

A professional journalist and blogger who has worked in several newspapers and websites

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