This policy brief provides an outline of the prospects for and challenges to integration of international protection beneficiaries and applicants in mainland Greece, based on emerging research findings. It focuses on three policy areas, which are key to social and economic integration: (1) labour market; (2) healthcare and social
welfare services; and (3) education and training. Structural factors, such as a shrinking labour market, high unemployment rates and an ongoing restructuring of labour relations, as well as various bureaucratic hurdles hinder labour market access. A generally overwhelmed and underfunded health system, the ongoing curtailment of social welfare provisions, and a number of practical obstacles limit access to healthcare and social welfare services.
Despite the significant progress that has been recorded in the area of integration of refugee children in Greek schools, some practical problems still persist, while there are still steps to be taken towards their formal integration in school life. On the other hand, limited progress has been recorded in the area of integration of adult refugees in higher education and vocational training programmes. The brief concludes that apart from objective obstacles, various perceived issues of concern among the public, as well as the living conditions of displaced persons who remain on the islands equally hinder the prospects for refugee integration in mainland Greece.