Poland: Access to the labour market for holders of humanitarian visas
The amendment of the Act of 28th October 2020 on Foreigners facilitates the access to the labour market for some groups of migrants. According to the novelisation, migrants with humanitarian visas or with “Poland. Business Harbour” annotation on visas can work legally with no additional permits. The Act of 28th October of 2020 amending the Act on Foreigners entered into force on 1st December 2020.
The amendment is an important political decision. According to Bartosz Grodecki, deputy minister of the Ministry of Interior and Administration, such solution is primarily targeting Belarusians, who leave their country due to prosecution. In August 2020, Poland implemented the procedure of national humanitarian visas in response to the political turmoil and repressions in Belarus after the presidential election. The procedure is free of charge and the document can be issued by General Consulates in Belarus. The essential limitation that raised concerns among human rights, diaspora and migrant organisations in Poland was that the initial legal framework did not entitle people with visas issued for the purpose of humanitarian reason to perform work or apply for temporary residence permit. The novelisation of the act could be a significant step towards improvement of situation of Belarusian citizens on their way to settle in Poland.
According to the Office for Foreigners, Belarusian citizens present the second largest migrants group in Poland after Ukrainian citizens. Although the main premise for entering Poland remains to be visas issued on the basis of Pole’s card, employment or enrolment to university or any other educational institution, since August 2020 the number of asylum applications increased.
Amendment of the Act on Foreigners – update
Cudzoziemcy z wizami humanitarnymi mogą już ubiegać się o zezwolenia na pracę
Poland simplified visa procedures for citizens of Belarus
Wiza humanitarna uprawnia do legalnej pracy w Polsce