Turkey takes first step to offer work permit to Syrians

Turkey takes first step to offer work permit to Syrians

Hacer Boyacıoğlu ANKARA
Turkey takes first step to offer work permit to Syrians Turkey will be able to give temporary identification cards to Syrians through a temporary protection decree, according to a new measure published in the Official Gazette on Oct. 22.

With the move, the government has taken the first step to granting work permission to more than 1.6 million Syrians who have taken refuge in Turkey since the civil war broke out over three years ago. 

The Labor Ministry is now expected to determine in which provinces and sectors Syrians can work across Turkey, according to the 29th article of the decree, which defines access to the labor market. The ministry will then submit its proposal about the scope of refugees under temporary protection to the Cabinet, which will decide whether work permits will be offered or not. 

These work permits will not be able to be used as a residence permit, according to the decree, and sources say the permits will probably only be effective in large cities across Turkey. 

Before the Labor Ministry begins to work on its proposal, how many temporary IDs will be given will be determined, sources said, adding that this process is expected to take around six months. 

Syrian refugee workers in Turkey have limited rights and protection by law. Since most are unable to speak Turkish, many are informally employed as manual laborers in industries such as construction and textiles.

The new decree clearly defines the rights and obligations of foreign people in Turkey who were forced to leave their own country and are temporarily unable to return. Refugees who were involved in terroristic actions or armed conflicts in their home country will not be taken under temporary protection. 

In this vein, Syrian refugees will need to disarm to be able to benefit from temporary protection rights. They will then be registered by the General Directorate of the Migration Affairs by filling out a form. When their registration process is complete, they will be given a temporary protection ID and a foreign ID number.