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Ministerial foreword

Wales has a long history of welcoming migrants to our communities. Our economic and cultural heritage is heavily influenced by contributions made by migrants who became neighbours and friends. Each successive wave of migration has created opportunities and connections between and within Welsh communities.

As a Welsh Government we believe strongly in the benefits which migration brings to Wales and we work to support integration of migrants with their host communities as soon as possible. However, we currently lack the depth of data required to assess if we are achieving positive outcomes for both migrants and communities. This Framework is the beginning of our attempt to correct that gap in our understanding of our communities.

Welsh communities are clearly generally very welcoming to migrants. Although hate crimes have increased in recent years, and notably since the EU referendum and the embedding of the UK Government’s ‘hostile environment’, most migrants talk about the friendly and supportive welcome they receive. EU Citizens, Syrian and Afghan refugees, Ukrainians, and others have come to Wales and received a very positive welcome over recent years.

Our use of the term ‘migrant’ is simply to differentiate between those born in the UK and born outside the UK. Some migrants will be recently arrived and others will have lived here for the majority of their lives. Our Framework is an attempt to minimise inequalities between migrants and people born in the UK, rather than an attempt to ‘other’ community members born elsewhere. Migrants contribute massively to Welsh life and we want them to know that they are welcome here. Hate has no place in our communities and we strive to confront it where we find it.

The Framework will eventually lead to the Welsh Government and partners having a much better understanding of whether migrants are able to fully participate in all areas of Welsh life. We must ensure we build cohesive communities and not embed parallel lives or allow harmful outcomes to be perpetuated.

Barriers to integration can be structural, institutional or practical. Through this Framework we will identify disparities in outcomes and then explore these to identify the barriers which are preventing integration and equality of outcome.

Integration is not simply about migrants ‘fitting in’ with existing Welsh communities. It is a 2-way process of adaptation for both new arrivals and their host communities. But through that adaptation, the overall community will be strengthened by new skills and perspectives. Integrated Welsh communities will be more dynamic and more able to address the challenges of the 21st century. We urge Welsh organisations and communities to work with us to build a Wales of cohesive communities.

Jane Hutt AM

Minister for Social Justice and Chief Whip

Why measure integration?

The Welsh Government wants to ensure migrants living in Wales can contribute fully to Welsh life, for the benefit of all. We also need to ensure that host communities are welcome, safe places which harness the benefits which migration can bring. Integration is a two-way process which brings responsibilities and opportunities for both migrants and their new communities.

We want people to begin to integrate with Welsh communities from day one of arrival. This means ensuring their needs are met, their skills are understood and utilised, and equality of opportunity is achieved. We can achieve this by making services accessible, people-centred, and focused on building capability rather than creating dependency. By doing so, we can prevent or reduce harmful outcomes such as homelessness, destitution, mental or physical ill-health, unemployment, and other negative consequences. We also want to prevent isolated or parallel communities to ensure our communities use the potential of all its members.

Improving outcomes for migrants will have positive community benefits. These include improved community cohesion and greater diversity in culture. The economy will benefit from unique perspectives and rare labour market skills, fostering the development of global links for Wales.

Currently, we do not have a clear framework for measuring the integration of communities hosting migrants living in Wales. This means that it is difficult to ascertain whether our policies are having the desired effects. In accordance with the Public Sector Equality Duty (s149 of the Equality Act 2010), we need to eliminate discrimination, advance equality of opportunity/outcome and foster good relations between migrants and those born in this country. Consequently, we believe this Migrant Integration Framework is an important document to help us monitor and ultimately achieve better integration.

The Migrant Integration Framework builds upon important previous work, including the Home Office’s ‘Indicators of Integration’ and the Welsh Government’s ‘Well-being of Future Generations National Indicators’. The Home Office work seeks to provide a Framework for assessing migrant integration experiences in the UK, whilst the Welsh Government Indicators seek to compare experiences of all individuals living in Wales. Our Framework seeks to simplify and combine the best of both.

To develop the Framework, the Welsh Government convened monthly steering group meetings, comprised of key academics and practitioners working on migrant integration research and services in Wales. Members were consulted throughout the project to help co-produce a Framework which was fit-for-purpose. The contributions of steering group members were invaluable. More information on membership can be found in our accompanying document.

A consultation on how to measure the inclusion of migrants in Wales was undertaken by the Welsh Government in early 2022. This consultation was undertaken with experts in migrant integration, including those working on integration services, academics, local authorities and migrants with lived experience. Focus groups were undertaken with migrants from a range of nationalities to ensure we understood the most important elements of Welsh life to support integration. A summary of the consultation responses is available.

Consultation responses, the views of steering group members, and the outputs of research documents completed as part of the Migrant Integration Wales Project influenced the drafting of this Framework. Further information about research and engagement can be found in our accompanying document.

How to use this Framework

Through this document we highlight recommended approaches to support integration and share case studies in an accompanying document. We recommend indicators which organisations can use to measure the integration of communities hosting migrants living in Wales. We also recommend ways to collect and publish data in a sensitive and useful manner. The indicators and good practice approaches we include are not exhaustive; many more examples of useful measures and approaches can be found in local, regional and national work supporting migrants. However, we highlight particularly key elements to achieve more effective integration.

This Framework does not encourage data sharing of personally-identifiable information relating to migrants living in Wales. Our approach is to understand the holistic experiences of migrants living in Wales through a range of issues (which we call integration ‘domains’).

We know that migrant community members may be nervous or distrustful of efforts to collect data about them. They may fear that data is being collected to track them, to be shared with Immigration Enforcement or to discriminate against them. This Framework seeks to provide an explanation about why we want organisations to collect this data and ways to reassure community members about our intentions. The data collected relating to migrant experiences will also require comparison data with UK-born neighbours in our communities. Comparisons may reveal inequalities in outcome and experience, as well as any adaption of the host community over time.

We want organisations in Wales to think about how they can support integration and how they can support us to measure this. The Home Office ‘Indicators of Integration’ document provides a broad toolkit for how all organisations can consider this. However, we have taken a simplified approach. This Framework does not attempt to measure all indicators of migrant integration. A relatively small number of indicators have been selected for Welsh organisations to consider. We believe these are key indicators to enable us to consider how Wales is performing at integrating communities.

The Framework attempts to set a clear direction for Welsh organisations to support measuring of integration. We explain how data could be collected and shared to support this work. It also helps organisations to understand where their involvement fits into the national challenge of ensuring our communities integrate effectively. We believe that a national approach is needed to help drive consistency in how data is collected and published. We do not seek to discourage organisations from collecting additional data to serve their specific purposes but collecting and publishing data which aligns to this Framework will support our national vision.

Some of the suggested indicators below already have Wales-level data comparing outcomes for migrants and UK-born residents. However, some of the data is not yet available at a Wales-level or existing data collections may not differentiate migrant countries of origin. Some of the migrant communities living in Wales may be here in such small numbers that national surveys and data collections cannot gather a representative sample of experiences. In light of this, the Framework also sets out the data which may need to be collected in forthcoming years to address these gaps in our knowledge.

Publishing this Framework is the start of a long process. Amending data collection and publication processes can take a long time and we want to ensure all organisations are encouraged to join us on this path. Due to the small numbers of some migrant communities, data may need to be collated across several years to provide reliable insights. We will need to work with organisations which collect and publish data to establish a baseline of migrant and community outcomes. It will take several more years of annual updates to start to assess trends in migrant integration across Wales.

As organisations publish data we also need to consider the factors which may lie behind the outcomes which are uncovered. We need to be able to consider other demographic factors, such as time spent in the UK, the average age of those arriving, motivations for being present in Wales and other demographic factors.

Indicators of integration and successful approaches

Throughout this document we have used the term ‘domains’ to relate to areas of Welsh life. The Home Office ‘Indicators of Integration’ uses 14 domains of integration which we have summarised into 7 domains below. However, some issues cross boundaries between domains, for example the language proficiency of migrants residing in Wales will affect integration in each of the domains despite appearing within the ‘Education and Skills’ domain. To properly consider integration we need to look at all of the domains collectively, rather than in isolation. All of the domains are linked and no domain is considered more important than another.

In the next section we have explored each of our 7 domains. Each domain includes a brief description of its scope and importance, followed by an explanation of some of the barriers to integration and negative impacts these cause. Each domain also includes some good practice which is known to support integration. Finally, we have selected a few key indicators within each domain to help us measure integration over the coming years.

Measuring the integration of individual migrants would be a very complex, time-consuming and potentially unethical approach to take. Instead, we are seeking to measure the integration of all migrants collectively. We will also seek data relating to UK-born individuals to compare outcomes over time. There is no implied order of importance to the domains as they appear below.

Collecting data on experiences and outcomes will help us to assess the extent of inequalities in our communities and whether successful integration is happening within Welsh communities. Some Wales-level data on migrant experiences may already exist but this will not be the case in all circumstances. As we implement the Migrant Integration Framework we will take a 3 stage approach:

  1. Collate and communicate the data which already exists for these indicators.
  2. If such data cannot be collected directly, consider whether Administrative Data Linkage could be used to identify the information we intend to collect.
  3. If data does not exist, ask appropriate organisations to consider collecting relevant data in a consistent manner. We have included potential survey questions against the relevant indicators below.

For each of the domains below we set out the indicators we think are most important to measure the integration of communities. We confirm which data is available or suggest how it could be made available to help achieve this.

The Welsh Government believes that the most effective approach to measuring integration will be to engage with the owners of existing data collections to see if changes can be made to address the gaps in migrant outcomes data.

However, we will continue to consider whether a Welsh Government-developed survey to help organisations collect data against the Indicators would be a useful tool. If your organisation collects/intends to collect data on any of those indicators, we would be keen to hear from you via migrationpolicy@gov.wales.

Domain 1: work

Being in employment (particularly in job roles which match migrants' skills and qualifications) can be a critical factor in promoting integration and independence. Employment provides social status, social connections and a sense of purpose. Supporting entrepreneurship and self-employment opportunities can also provide additional avenues for economic integration.

Work provides opportunities for migrants and members of the host community to meet each other, as well as informally learn the language and workplace culture and customs in the UK. Work also helps individuals to build confidence, social connections, and financial well-being. Gaining employment is usually the number one priority for many migrants coming to Wales.

Key Indicators of Integration

Although there are many ways to measure the integration of migrants in the context of work, we have selected a few key indicators which we will use for the purposes of this Framework.

Indicator 1: percentage employed at a level appropriate to skills, qualifications, and experience

Question asked:

Which of the following statements describes your skills in your own work:

  • I lack some skills required in my current duties
  • My present skills correspond well with my duties 
  • I have the skills to cope with more demanding duties 

Indicator 2: percentage of people in employment, who are on permanent contracts (or on temporary contracts, and not seeking permanent employment) and who earn at least the real Living Wage

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 16).

Questions asked:

Are you working as an employee, self-employed or not working?

  • Employee 
  • Self-employed 
  • Government scheme 
  • Unpaid family worker 
  • Not working

In your main job are you working:

  • Full time 
  • Part time 

Some people have special working hours arrangements that vary from the usual full-time pattern. In your (main) job is your agreed working pattern any of the following:

  • Flexitime (flexible working hours) 
  • An annualised hours contract 
  • Term-time working 
  • Job sharing 
  • Condensed / compressed hours
  • Zero hours contract
  • On-call working 
  • None of these 

Indicator 3: percentage of people living in households in income poverty relative to the UK median: measured for children, working age and those of pension age

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 18).

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: Households below average income (HBAI) statistics. 
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? Yes.

Indicator 4: percentage reporting satisfaction with current employment

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No

Question asked: 

On a scale of nought to 10, where nought is ‘not at all’ and 10 is ‘completely’, overall, how satisfied are you with your present job? (Asked of people in work).

Indicator 5: percentage reporting financial insecurity

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Question asked: 

Which one of these statements best describes how well you are keeping up with your bills and credit commitments at the moment:

  • Keeping up with all bills and credit commitments without any difficulties 
  • Keeping up with all bills and credit commitments but it is a struggle from time to time 
  • Keeping up with all bills and credit commitments but it is a constant struggle 
  • Falling behind with some bills or credit commitments 
  • Having real financial problems and have fallen behind with many bills or credit commitments 
  • Have no bills 

If you or your organisation are working with migrants in Wales and could ask some of the questions above, we would like to discuss this with you. Please contact us via migrationpolicy@gov.wales for us to arrange a conversation.

Where existing data collections do not currently collect migrant data for Wales, dedicated surveys can help us to better understand outcomes and inequalities. This will help us to make reforms where needed and possible.

Approaches

We know that certain approaches can improve the integration of migrants in relation to work. We encourage relevant organisations to embed the approaches below to support better outcomes.

  • Promote locally available support accessing employment:
    • help understanding local job market and work culture.
    • help with CVs and applications.
    • mentoring/work shadowing/experience/apprenticeship schemes
  • Deliver schemes:
    • with employers to develop employment and training opportunities (including for specific groups with vulnerabilities or particular needs)
    • support access to employment in sectors where migrants are underrepresented as part of broader access to labour market initiatives.
    • to facilitate tailored pathways to employment (including converting existing qualifications, re-qualification, and top-up programmes, and work specific language courses) that meet needs and aspirations.
  • Replicating or devising programs to support business start-ups; Signposting to support business mentoring for entrepreneurial activities.

“From Syria to Ukraine, IKEA has found ways to bring refugees into employment. Through this refugee-focused up-skilling and work programmes, those seeking support can access a range of services, including CV writing, job application support, interview techniques and customer service training, as well as an introduction to IKEA's culture and values, and understanding Wales’ and the UK’s labour market.”

Read more about this successful approach in our accompanying case studies document.

Domain 2: housing

The availability of adequate, affordable and stable housing is an essential component of migrant integration, as it can provide individuals with stability, security, and a sense of belonging and well-being. Providing access to good quality housing which meets the needs of individuals and families can therefore be an important factor in promoting integration.

While considering housing needs it is important to take into account not only the quality, size, affordability, and suitability of available housing, but also the associated social and cultural aspects. Those who migrate to Wales may find that renting a house or room is difficult as they may not have credit history, references, a guarantor, or money to pay a bond. They may also find it difficult to understand the difference between the various housing options available to them. Precarious financial situations and a lack of social connections may also contribute towards less stable housing arrangements, requiring frequent moves which make individuals feel less secure.

Key Indicators of Integration

For the purposes of this Framework, we have identified several key indicators which can be used to measure the integration of migrants in relation to housing.

Indicator 1: percentage living in overcrowded housing

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.

Questions asked:

How many people usually live in your household?

How many rooms are available for use only by this household?

Indicator 2: percentage living in owner-occupier/secure or assured tenancy conditions

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.

Questions asked:

Does your household own or rent this accommodation?

  • Owns outright
  • Owns with a mortgage or loan
  • Part-owns and part-rents (shared ownership)
  • Rents (with or without housing benefit)
  • Lives here rent free

If not homeowner:

Who is your landlord?

  • Housing association, housing co-operative, charitable trust, registered social landlord
  • Council or local authority
  • Private landlord or lettings agency
  • Employer of a household member
  • Relative or friend of a household member
  • Other

Indicator 3: percentage homeless (number of households successfully prevented from becoming homeless per 10,000 households)

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 34)

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: Homelessness.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

Are you behind on rent, has your landlord given you an eviction notice or have you been threatened with homelessness in any other way?

  • Yes
  • No

If yes:

 Have you contacted your local authority for help and was this successful?

  • Yes
  • No

Indicator 4: percentage reporting being very or fairly satisfied with their accommodation

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Question asked:

How satisfied are you with this accommodation?

  • Very satisfied
  • Fairly satisfied
  • Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied
  • Fairly dissatisfied
  • Very dissatisfied

Is your home kept in a good state of repair?

  • Yes
  • No

If you or your organisation are working with migrants in Wales and could ask some of the questions above, we would like to discuss this with you. Please contact us via migrationpolicy@gov.wales for us to arrange a conversation.

Approaches

We know that certain approaches can improve the integration of migrants with regards to housing. We encourage relevant organisations to embed the approaches below to support better outcomes.

  • Engagement of migrant and refugee community organisations with local authorities and Housing Organisations to promote change to make their services more migrant friendly.
  • Developing the information and training for the organisation supporting migrants so the information is available in their national language.

“It has been highlighted that with support and stable accommodation many EEA Nationals could return to or gain employment and manage a private rented tenancy, thus giving the opportunity for a lasting exit from homelessness. Ty Cyfle aims to provide secure, safe and good quality accommodation to EEA Nationals rough sleeping or accessing emergency homeless accommodation who are unable to access public funds, as well as intensive support to remove any barriers to employment and long-term housing.”

Read more about this successful approach in our accompanying case studies document.

Domain 3: health and social care

The availability of high quality and timely health and social care services is essential for promoting the health and well-being of individuals and communities and is therefore an important factor in enabling the integration of migrants. Ensuring migrants have access to these services and that they are tailored to meet migrants’ diverse needs can help to promote their well-being and inclusion.

Migrants will have different cultural backgrounds and experiences of health and social care, both from their country of origin and in the UK. It is important to make sure migrants are given an opportunity to learn and understand what help is available in a culturally competent way and support with how to access it. Consequently, it is important that service providers adapt by ensuring culturally competent approaches are mainstreamed in their practice.

Some migrants may travel back to their country of origin (if permitted and able) to undergo medical treatments or procedures, partly due to language barriers and partly due to a lack of understanding or satisfaction with the UK healthcare system. For the same reasons, migrants may also access private unregulated medical services, including online pharmacies, which could lead to negative health impacts.

Some migrants are particularly vulnerable to mental ill-health as a result of their previous experiences. They may have experienced significant trauma causing their displacement, trauma on journeys to the UK, or trauma whilst residing in isolation within the UK. Those who have experienced gender-based violence will also have particular need for sensitive and inclusive healthcare services.

Key Indicators of Integration

There are many ways to measure the integration of migrants in health and social care. We have selected a few key indicators which we will use for the purposes of this Framework.

Indicator 1: percentage expressing good self-rated health and well-being

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.

Questions asked:

How is your health in general?

  • Very good
  • Good
  • Fair
  • Bad
  • Very bad

Indicator 2: percentage registered with a GP

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: Welsh Demographic Service Dataset. Data available in SAIL (need to request access).
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No

Questions asked:

Are you registered with a GP in Wales?

  • Yes
  • No
  • Don’t know

Indicator 3: percentage of adults with two or more healthy lifestyle behaviours

(links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 3).

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

Number of healthy lifestyle behaviours:

  • not smoking
  • healthy weight
  • eat 5 fruit or veg
  • not drinking above guidelines
  • active

Indicator 4: mean mental well-being score for people

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 29).

Questions asked:

You will see some statements about wellbeing. For each one, please pick the answer that best describes your experience over the last 2 weeks from:

  • None of the time
  • Rarely
  • Some of the time
  • Often
  • All of the time
  • Don’t know
  • Prefer not to say

The statements are:

  • I’ve been feeling optimistic about the future
  • I’ve been feeling useful
  • I’ve been feeling relaxed
  • I’ve been feeling interested in other people
  • I’ve had energy to spare
  • I’ve been dealing with problems well
  • I’ve been thinking clearly
  • I’ve been feeling good about myself
  • I’ve been feeling close to other people
  • I’ve been feeling confident
  • I’ve been able to make up my own mind about things
  • I’ve been feeling loved
  • I’ve been interested in new things
  • I’ve been feeling cheerful

Indicator 5: percentage service users who say social care services have made them feel safe and secure

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

Consider asking social care users/carers:

To what extent do you agree or disagree...I feel safe:

  • Strongly agree
  • Agree
  • Neither agree nor disagree
  • Disagree
  • Strongly disagree

If you or your organisation are working with migrants in Wales and could ask some of the questions above, we would like to discuss this with you. Please contact us via migrationpolicy@gov.wales for us to arrange a conversation.

Approaches

  • Preparation of toolkits with the community and for the community in community languages.
  • Specialist service provision available where high concentration of local need (example TB screening where prevalence is much higher in country of origin).
  • Support to access health and social care services (e.g., availability of appropriate interpreting services
  • Availability of accessible local health promotion, antenatal/postnatal and disability support initiatives
  • Using communication channels that are used by targeted community to improve health literacy
  • Use creative approaches (film, visual arts etc.) to bear witness to the disorientation and loss which cannot be expressed easily in language. This helps to develop migrant self-representation and will benefit themselves and wider understanding in the community.

“The Trauma-Informed Wales Framework sets out the approach to developing and implementing trauma-informed practice across Wales, providing the best possible support to those who need it most. The Framework establishes how individuals, families/other support networks, communities, organisations and systems take account of adversity and trauma, recognising and supporting the strengths of an individual to overcome this experience in their lives. It also sets out the support they can expect to receive from the organisations, sectors and systems that they may turn to for help. It is inclusive of people of all ages, from babies, children and young people right through to older adults.”

Read more about this successful approach in our accompanying case studies document.

Domain 4: social connections (bonds, bridges and links)

Building social connections and fostering a sense of belonging is an important component of integration. Ensuring migrants and their new neighbours can meet and share ideas will promote social cohesion and reduce social isolation.

This domain involves three different types of social connection.

Firstly, it is about connections that allow migrants to feel like they belong. This involves the family and others who migrants feel are ‘like them’, such as compatriots from their country of origin or those with a similar migration status. We call the connection between these individuals social bonds. Social bonds can also include those who can authentically represent the ‘voice’ of migrant communities and may advocate on their behalf or provide advice to those in similar situations.

Secondly, social connections can be bridges. Social bridges relate to connections between people who are considered to be from different social groups. For example, a migrant may form a social bridge with a new neighbour or work colleague born in Wales. These connections can be built through mixing within communities, including via schools, workplaces, social clubs, religious settings, sport, or political activities. Cultural events are particularly powerful opportunities to build social bridges, particularly where opportunities for two-way sharing exist. Volunteering opportunities also help to build connections.

Social links refer to connections that are made between individuals and service providers, like police, NHS or local government. For example, links may be made via migrant community outreach services or more inclusive practices in mainstream approaches.

All three types of social connection are important to ensure effective integration of migrants within host communities. Social bonds, bridges, and links help to build understanding of the new society among migrants and create support networks and opportunities allowing them to thrive. They also build greater awareness of the skills and culture brought to Wales by new migrants, which can be harnessed to support the community overall. Integration is a two-way process, with both the host community and new migrants benefitting greatly from these opportunities. Wales, as a whole, benefits from these connections being made.

Key Indicators of Integration

Although there are many ways to measure the integration of migrants in terms of social connections, we have selected a few key indicators which we will use for the purposes of this Framework.

Indicator 1: percentage reporting sense of ‘belonging’ to neighbourhood and local area

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 27).

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

To what extent would you agree or disagree that you belong to your local area?

  • Strongly agree
  • Tend to agree
  • Neither agree nor disagree
  • Tend to disagree
  • Strongly disagree

Indicator 2: percentage reporting that people of different backgrounds get on well in their area

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 27).

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

To what extent do you agree or disagree that this local area is a place where people from different backgrounds get on well together?

  • Strongly agree
  • Tend to agree
  • Neither agree nor disagree
  • Tend to disagree
  • Strongly disagree

Indicator 3: percentage of people attending or participating in arts, culture or heritage activities at least 3 times a year

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 35).

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

People attending or participating in arts, culture or heritage activities at least 3 times a year

  • Yes
  • No

Indicator 4: percentage of people who volunteer

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 28)

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

Which of these clubs or organisations, if any, are you currently giving your time to for free:

  • Charitable organisation
  • School or young persons’ group
  • Tenants/residents group or neighbourhood watch
  • Religious group
  • Pensioners group/organisation
  • Sports club
  • Arts group (e.g. drama, music, art or crafts)
  • Environmental group
  • Museum/heritage site
  • Other club or organisation
  • None of these

Indicator 5: percentage reporting having friends with different backgrounds

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? No.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

Do you have friends who have a different nationality to you?

  • All the same as me
  • More than a half
  • About a half
  • Less than a half

If you or your organisation are working with migrants in Wales and could ask some of the questions above, we would like to discuss this with you. Please contact us via migrationpolicy@gov.wales for us to arrange a conversation.

Approaches

We know that certain approaches can improve the integration of migrants in terms of social connections. We encourage relevant organisations to embed the approaches below to support better outcomes.

  • Providing support and mentoring to community organisations and leaders
  • Training and outreach programmes to encourage and support involvement in public and civic life for migrants.
  • Accessible funding for cultural activities
  • Provision of activities aimed at encouraging participation of diverse groups.

“The mainly voluntary team at Oasis organise and deliver a wide variety of services to promote integration, ranging from food clubs to trips, sports events, gardening and language tuition (ESOL). This informal provision provides crucial linguistic, psychological, and emotional scaffolding for the newly arrived sanctuary seekers, enabling them to begin language learning, form friendships and access support as soon as they arrive.”

Read more about this successful approach in our accompanying case studies document.

Domain 5: education and skills (including language, communication and digital)

Education and training can provide individuals with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the labour market and participate fully in society. Access to quality and timely education and training opportunities (or opportunities to certify evidence of skills brought to the UK) can therefore be an important factor in promoting integration. Language proficiency, specifically, is vital in advancing social cohesion and a sense of belonging. The ability to speak, read, and write in English or Welsh is essential for accessing education, employment, and other services. It can also help migrants to communicate effectively with their communities and build social connections. Therefore, measuring the English language proficiency of migrants in Wales could provide insights into their integration and social inclusion.

English/Welsh for Speakers of Other Languages (E/WSOL) courses (and informal English/Welsh language opportunities) are especially crucial at the beginning of a migrant’s integration with their host community. However, there is growing evidence that migrant communities would additionally benefit from higher level provisions, to make sure their language abilities enable the use of the other skills individuals bring to the Welsh economy. All migrants bring with them language skills and these can also be of use to Welsh communities and the Welsh economy. The ability to speak English or Welsh may not be the most important element of an individual’s ability to work productively. Foreign language skills can support international trade, programming languages can be near-universal, and developing multilingualism can increase the capacity for creative thinking, to provide just a few examples of this.

Digital skills are increasingly vital to be able to engage in society, whether it is for employment, socialising, managing, and monitoring health conditions, education, and further learning. Digital inclusion, a key social justice and equalities issue, the internet and wider digital technology can be an enabler but for non-users or limited users of digital technology they are at risk of missing these benefits and are potentially unable to take advantage of the improvements to public services as more of these undergo digital transformation.

Access to quality and timely education and training can aid migrant integration in a number of ways, some of which are not confined solely to learning. By attending training, migrants will be mixing with the host population and creating social connections. It can also help individuals to understand UK systems and processes.

A lack of information about the education system and what is expected of children and parents, can be a huge barrier to child development. This can lead to poor choices about which subjects to study which subsequently leads to more limited employment and education options.

Key Indicators of Integration

For the purposes of this Framework we have identified several key indicators that can be used to measure integration in the context of education.

Indicator 1: percentage people who do not have English/Welsh as a first language reporting ability to hold simple conversation with local language speaker (e.g., a neighbour)

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.

Questions asked:

What is your main language?

  • English or Welsh
  • Other, write in (including British Sign Language)

How well can you speak English?

  • Very well
  • Well
  • Not well
  • Not at all

Can you understand, speak, read or write Welsh?

  • Understand spoken Welsh
  • Speak Welsh
  • Read Welsh
  • Write Welsh
  • None of the above

Indicator 2: percentage achieving 5 or more GCSEs at A* to C grade

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 7).

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: 2021 Census.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? Yes 2021 Census.

Questions asked:

Have you achieved any other qualifications?

GCSEs or equivalent:

  • 5 or more GCSEs (A* to C, 9 to 4), O levels (passes), CSEs (grade 1) or Intermediate Welsh Baccalaureate
  • Any other GCSEs, O levels or CSEs (any grades), Basic Skills course or Foundation Welsh Baccalaureate

Indicator 3: percentage which ‘personally use the internet’?

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 50).

Questions asked:

Do you personally use the internet at home, work or elsewhere (including smart tv and handheld devices)

  • Yes (on my own)
  • Yes (with help)
  • No
  • Don’t know

Indicator 4: percentage young people and adults achieving admission to tertiary education

Indicator 5: what is the highest level of your education?

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 8).

Questions asked:

Was your highest qualification gained in the UK, or outside of the UK?

  • In the UK
  • Outside the UK
  • Don’t know

What type of qualification is it?

  • Postgraduate degree
  • Undergraduate degree
  • Higher qualification below degree level
  • A-level/Vocational A-level or equivalent
  • AS-level/Vocational AS-level or equivalent
  • International Baccalaureate
  • O-levels or equivalent
  • GCSE/Vocational GCSE or equivalent
  • Other work-related or professional qualification
  • School Leavers Certificate
  • Don't know

If you or your organisation are working with migrants in Wales and could ask some of the questions above, we would like to discuss this with you. Please contact us via migrationpolicy@gov.wales for us to arrange a conversation.

Approaches

We know that certain approaches can improve the integration of migrants in terms of education. We encourage relevant organisations to embed the approaches below to support better outcomes.

  • Provide language tuition which most closely meets the attainment level and aspirations of the learner, rather than on the basis of home language, nationality or immigration status. This means learners of many different nationalities learn alongside each other but at a similar learning level.
  • Provide opportunities for the Welsh language to be taught to migrants, in particular in Welsh-speaking heartlands. Such an approach can evidence the positive effect which migration can have in safeguarding Welsh cultural identity and provides alternative integration opportunities.
  • Bursary schemes can support access to tertiary education for migrants with socio-economic disadvantages.
  • Seek to develop multi-agency approaches to support integration. Consider the role that family, community and other partners can take to develop a whole-system approach. Each element is connected and can contribute towards a more holistic and sustainable approach.

“As part of its mission to welcome people from all backgrounds to learn and enjoy Welsh, the National Centre for Learning Welsh has a ‘Croeso i Bawb’ project to teach the Welsh language to people who do not speak English as a first language, including refugees and asylum speakers.”

Read more about this successful approach in our accompanying case studies document.

Domain 6: safety and stability

Helping individuals feel safe can support more effective integration with local communities. Discrimination and prejudice can create significant barriers to integration by limiting access to employment, housing, and services. They also foster social isolation and exclusion. A lack of purpose, insecure immigration status or unstable life circumstances can also undermine integration.

A key feature of this domain is how people feel. Being safe and feeling safe are not always the same thing. A house can be safe with locks and an alarm but it may not feel safe because the neighbourhood contains people who are prejudiced against migrants.

Stability can be viewed as individuals feeling comfortable that they can control things that happen in their lives. There may be continuity of services. People may have created a support network and financial or mental resilience.

While social connections are an important part of the development of safety and stability, this is much more about personal well-being and confidence.

Experiences of hate crime or discrimination arising from an individual’s national background or intersectional characteristics (including sexual orientation, sex, disability, gender identity or religion) can be particularly impactful as individuals have been targeted because of something which is intrinsic to their identity. Experiences of trafficking, abuse, and crime, can also undermine the feeling of safety. Poverty and insecure immigration status can undermine individuals’ ability to feel their life is on a stable footing.

Without achieving a feeling of safety and security, individuals are unlikely to fully contribute to local communities and achieve their full potential. Communities must be welcoming and inclusive to ensure the benefits of migration are shared by all.

Key Indicators of Integration

With regards to the integration of migrants in terms of safety and security, we have selected a few key indicators which we will use for the purposes of this Framework.

Indicator 1: percentage reporting confidence that the Criminal Justice System is fair

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 47).

Questions asked:

How confident are you that the Criminal Justice System as a whole is fair?

  • Very confident
  • Fairly confident
  • Not very confident
  • Not at all confident
  • Don’t know

Indicator 2: percentage reporting feeling safe in local community

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 25).

Questions asked:

How safe do/would you feel walking alone in this area after dark? By this area I mean within 15 minutes walk from here:

  • Very safe
  • Fairly safe
  • A bit unsafe
  • Very unsafe

Indicator 3: percentage reporting to be a target of a hate crime or incident.

Questions asked:

Do you think the incident was motivated by the offender’s attitude towards any of these factors?   

  • Your race
  • Your religion or religious beliefs
  • Your sexuality or sexual orientation
  • Your age
  • Your sex
  • Any disability you have
  • Your gender identity (transgender)
  • Don’t Know
  • None of these

Was there anything about the incident that made you think it might have been motivated by any of these factors?      

  • Your race
  • Your religion or religious beliefs
  • Your sexuality or sexual orientation
  • Your age
  • Your sex
  • Any disability you have
  • Your gender identity (transgender)
  • None of these

Indicator 4: percentage reporting satisfaction with local area

(Links to Wellbeing of Wales National Indicator 26).

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales?: No.

Questions asked:

Overall, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your local area as a place to live?

  • Very satisfied
  • Fairly satisfied
  • Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied
  • Fairly dissatisfied
  • Very dissatisfied

If you or your organisation are working with migrants in Wales and could ask some of the questions above, we would like to discuss this with you. Please contact us via migrationpolicy@gov.wales for us to arrange a conversation.

Approaches

We know that certain approaches can improve the integration of migrants in terms of education. We encourage relevant organisations to embed the approaches below to support better outcomes.

  • Undertake outreach with migrant support groups in the local area to ensure concerns are understood and awareness can be raised about local opportunities. Communities are rarely ‘hard-to-reach’ but are ‘seldom heard’.
  • Provide tailored support to those feeling targeted or discriminated against because of their national origins.
  • Help those forcibly displaced or those experiencing destitution through informal local support networks. Support can be financial or through goods but even just navigating local systems, providing cultural orientation and friendship can have very positive impacts.
  • Using creative approaches, develop new ways of challenging stereotypes of migrants and helping to identify motivations, improving social competencies and offering supportive ways of learning for migrants.

“I think the concept of ‘cwtch’ applies here. I think a big part of the Welsh heritage is you cwtch people in, you nourish and support them… I didn’t realise it at the time, but they’ve been the light I needed. Having them here has really changed my life. I feel so grateful. They’ve done as much for me as I could do for them. I feel like my life has been enhanced, as does my partner and my children.”

Read more about this successful approach in our accompanying case studies document.

Domain 7: rights and responsibilities

In seeking to become a Nation of Sanctuary, as well as through implementing the Anti Racist Wales Action Plan, the Welsh Government is seeking to eliminate inequalities and support integration. For people to fully integrate with Welsh communities, they need to understand their rights and responsibilities. Host community members equally have responsibilities to follow the law, engage with democratic processes and participate in local communities. Individuals also need to be able to exercise their rights to ensure they have the safety net which is sometimes required. This is why advice services and awareness-raising activities can play a critical role in supporting integration.

Awareness of rights and responsibilities will support new migrants to build social connections and awareness of Welsh systems more quickly. Rights and responsibilities establish a common framework for interactions between all individuals in a community. It is therefore important that new migrants are supported to understand these as soon as possible.

Key Indicators of Integration

Although there are many ways to measure the integration of migrants in terms of rights and responsibilities, we have selected a few key indicators which we will use for the purposes of this Framework.

Indicator 1: percent registering to vote

Indicator 2: percentage utilising advice services

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? Yes: National Survey for Wales.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions asked:

In the last 12 months, have you had advice or support from any organisations in these areas of life?

  • Debt
  • Financial matters other than debt
  • Welfare benefits
  • Housing
  • Employment
  • Discrimination
  • Divorce or problems relating to relationship breakdown
  • Social care
  • Goods and services you have bought
  • None of these
  • Other

Indicator 3: percentage reporting knowledge of rights

  • Does data exist for UK-born individuals in Wales? No.
  • Does data exist for migrants in Wales? No.

Questions to ask:

Which of the following best describes your knowledge of ...?

  • Human Rights Act
  • Equality Act
  • Social Services and Well-being Act

Response options for each:

  • I know nothing at all
  • I know a little
  • I know a fair amount
  • I know a great deal

If you or your organisation are working with migrants in Wales and could ask some of the questions above, we would like to discuss this with you. Please contact us via migrationpolicy@gov.wales for us to arrange a conversation.

Approaches

We know that certain approaches can improve the integration of migrants in terms of education. We encourage relevant organisations to embed the approaches below to support better outcomes.

  • Provide information about living in Wales (or local areas) which is tailored to your migrant audience and communicate it via community support organisations and community communication channels (e.g. Telegram, Whatsapp, Facebook etc).
  • Ensure you monitor the uptake of advice services and receipt of information by migrant communities to ensure services are accessible. Take active steps to improve uptake where needed.
  • Actively consider how to involve migrant communities in registration drives and political participation initiatives.

“Swansea produced a Step-by-Step Guide on how to register to vote in multiple languages which was housed on the local authority’s website. The guide was provided in 10 languages and helped removed a crucial barrier to accessing information. The approach proved successful, and the number of registered qualifying foreign nationals almost doubled from January to April 2022.”

Read more about this successful approach in our accompanying case studies document.

Data collection and publishing

You or your organisation may be in a position to support this Framework by either embedding the successful approaches to integration we have outlined in your work, or by collecting and publishing data relating to the key indicators of integration we have identified. If your service works closely with migrants in Wales we would like you to consider the advice in this section.

The Framework is not primarily about collecting new data. We are seeking to collate existing data in one place, persuade those collecting data to include migrant experiences, and plug gaps in the data where necessary. Some new data collection will be required but we mostly aim to make existing data collections and resulting data more accessible.

If you or your organisation collect data relating to one or more of the 7 domains we have referred to in this Framework, we encourage you to ask specific questions about the country of birth of those accessing your services/support. Without this data it is extremely difficult to measure the integration of migrant communities or have a comparison with UK-born communities.

A suggested question to ask is: “What is your country of birth?” with the following response options included:

  • Wales
  • England
  • Scotland
  • Northern Ireland
  • Republic of Ireland
  • Elsewhere, write in current name of the country: [Free text box]

This question and responses are harmonised with ONS Census questions. We recognise that asking this question will limit the scope of our work to first-generation migrants and will exclude the children of those born to migrants. Second-generation migrants may have important insights about integration challenges and opportunities so further consideration will be given to how we can collect additional useful data in future.

It is also important that other questions about demographic characteristics are asked if data is being collected about migrant experiences. Outcomes and experiences can vary significantly depending on age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, sex, ethnicity, religion or belief, or migration status. Ensuring this data is collected enables more in-depth investigation into the variable experiences which migrants in Wales may be facing.

If you or your organisation do not collect data on any of the domains but you work closely with migrants in Wales, you may be able to use your position to fill some gaps in existing data. Could you ask your service users some of the key questions we have suggested as part of this Framework? For example, this could be via a survey of the people you work with and/or support. Alternatively, to capture more detailed narrative information you could hold a one-to-one discussion with your service users and/or speak to several of them at the same time in a focus group or workshop. Even very small surveys or discussions can provide vital data to help us measure integration outcomes.

All data collections need to consider how to avoid bias in the way questions are asked and respondents are sought. Wherever possible, ask the same question included in established data collections and in the same manner (for example, via phone, in-person etc.) Adopting the closest replication of the original data collection methodology will reduce the scope for unwitting bias.

Anyone working closely with migrants in Wales can also ask questions which are particularly useful in measuring migrant integration but which would not be included in an established mainstream data collection. For example, you could ask service users about whether they have secure immigration status, or if they have knowledge of their rights in the UK. Consider the indicators above to see if there are questions which could be asked to contribute to this work.

It is important to think about confidentiality, anonymity and privacy when collecting, processing, publishing and sharing data. As part of this it is necessary to ensure respondents know the reasons why the questions are being asked, what their data will be used for, whether the findings will be published, how long the data will be kept and whether it will be shared. This information is often provided to respondents beforehand as part of a privacy notice. We strongly encourage organisations collecting data to clearly state in their privacy notices that anonymised data may be used to help us measure integration in Wales.

If you are collecting data which helps to measure integration we would very much welcome you sharing it with us if you are in a position to do so given that would allow us to analyse it and use it to influence policy. As part of this Framework we are seeking to bring together available data relating to selected indicators of integration in a single place to enable all partners to examine progress. If you have data to contribute or would like to see data provided by others, please send your name and contact details, your organisation’s name, and summary of interest in this work to migrationpolicy@gov.wales. We will consider the request and provide access to the data for appropriate parties if possible to do so.

It is crucial that identifiable data is not recorded, shared or published as part of any data collection. Country of birth could become identifiable, for example, if combined with other data so please think carefully about how data is processed to ensure it shines a light on migrant integration, without unintentionally identifying individuals against their will.

Additionally, we encourage organisations to consider whether they could provide data to the Secure Anonymised Information Linkage (SAIL) Databank at Swansea University, via ADR Wales, to enable administrative data linkage to take place. ADR Wales is part of the UKRI funded ADR UK and is a partnership between Swansea University Medical School and the Wales Institute of Social and Economic Research and Data (WISERD) at Cardiff University and statisticians, economists and social researchers from the Welsh Government. Due to the small population size of migrant communities in Wales, it can be difficult to undertake random sampling and have enough participants from a migrant background to ensure findings are statistically significant. An alternative approach to support this work is to provide datasets to the SAIL Databank which gives researchers secure access to datasets with anonymised person-based data records and covers the population of Wales. SAIL utilises the services of a Trusted Third Party (TTP), Digital Health and Care Wales and uses anonymised data to combine with other datasets, to provide far more rich insights into the experiences of small communities.

We know that some migrant community members will be nervous about providing their data to organisations and potentially concerned about the concept of measuring integration. We want to explain clearly why we are doing this work and allay fears that migrants may have. As a result, we are producing 2 films explaining the Migrant Integration Framework and what should happen with an individual’s data.

Implementation and accountability

We recognise that publication of the Framework is just the beginning of work required to measure and promote the integration of migrants residing in Wales.

We will publish an annual report against progress towards measuring and promoting integration. We will publish this each December to coincide with International Migrants Day.

The annual update will outline actions taken and improvements made to data collection and publication needs. In time, the update will also be able to provide a baseline for migrant integration in Wales, and subsequently track progress made towards improving outcomes for all migrants calling Wales home.

The indicators we have selected above seek to ensure the quantitative data received covers tangible and intangible areas of integration. We are seeking data about outputs (such as qualifications) and feelings (such as belonging). This mix of factors is critical to collect to ensure our approach does not overlook more complex and hidden areas of life.

The annual update will enable us to look at trends and inequalities in quantitative indicators. However, the data by itself will not be sufficient in establishing whether integration is going well or not. We will seek to supplement these reports with rapid exploratory studies to try to look behind the data at more qualitative experiences. These rapid studies will help us to try to explain the trend/inequality and reform practice where necessary.

As Welsh Government, we aim to be an exemplar for collecting and publishing data in accordance with this Framework. Work has already begun to review the various Welsh Government schemes and data collections to make as many compliant with this Framework as possible.

We will need to continue to engage closely with local government, Health Boards, and the Third Sector to oversee progress in implementing the Framework approach.

We will need to include migrants themselves in this work to ensure an ongoing understanding of our intentions and review whether the indicators are still appropriate. Involving migrants aligns to the Wellbeing of Future Generations ways of working and helps us to ensure we can embed migrant perspectives. Through the Migrant Integration Wales Project, we have developed connections with grassroots migrant community groups in Wales and we intend to continue to work with these groups as we implement the Framework.