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-   -   Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher (https://www.englishforum.ch/swiss-politics-news/102050-compulsory-language-test-intending-immigrants-cards-says-blocher.html)

st2lemans 19.12.2010 11:02

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
When I first moved to Switzerland, I moved to Zurich, but didn't speak German.

When I finally was starting to get comfortable with German (after four years), I moved to Lugano, but didn't speak Italian.

I've been in Ticino 20 years, and only in the past few years has my Italian gotten to the point that I'm semi-fluent.

BUT, before coming to Switzerland, I did speak, read, and write fluent French, so, while I've never lived in the French speaking part, I have always been totally fluent in one of the Swiss languages!

However, if they want to make it a requirement to be fluent in the language of the region where you live, most Swiss would have a problem if they are not in their home canton.

Tom

Faltrad 19.12.2010 11:10

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
By definition, they will have to treat national languages equal. It can mean however that immigrants speaking French will only get a permit of a French speaking part of the country. That again is not that easy to define, as bilingual cantons will have to be careful to respect their own laws in that matter (Bern, Fribourg, Wallis/Vallais) - same with trilingual GraubŁnden/Grischun/Grigioni.

Getting such a law through would be very interesting legally speaking.

Guest 19.12.2010 11:15

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
I had an arrangement with our local University in the UK, hosting their top foreign scientific researchers, from Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Slovakia - their certainly worked very hard at their job AND at learning English.
I am not sure what Blocher intends to propose exactly, but I'd say after 2 years, any living here (or indeed anywhere else) should be able to communicate on a basic every day level (grammar not being important as long as it does no affect meaning overall).

I have every sympathy with those in the German speaking part - but I'd say that they should be able to communicate in standard German.

adrianlondon 19.12.2010 11:44

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

This one could solve a number of problems, according to Blocher: 'We would have fewer school problems, fewer criminals, fewer sans-paiers, less integration problems and the social system would be under less stress. "
Yeah, cos when has anyone speaking German ever been a criminal.

(From The Simpsons:
Prosecutor: What about that tattoo on your chest? Doesn't it say die Bart die?
Sideshow Bob: No, that's German
[unveils tattoo]
Sideshow Bob: for 'The Bart The'.
Parole Board Member: No one who speaks German could be an evil man.
)

olygirl 19.12.2010 11:54

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
All children in Switzerland are required to learn English at school. Therefore, by all rights and common sense, English should also be included as one of the compulsory languages that immigrants could choose to speak.

By the way, I doubt this will pass because too complicated to enforce.

Mowvich 19.12.2010 12:18

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
After discussing with some Swiss friends yesterday and some of them actively involved in politics / government, We all agreed on one thing, let's leave SVP / UDC go ahead with all their plans to limit foreigners and kick them out of the country by abusing laws and rules and throwing blatant initiatives here and there, let's see how Switzerland will survive without foreign work force / population...:rolleyes:

Mowvich 19.12.2010 12:21

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by olygirl (Post 1048942)
All children in Switzerland are required to learn English at school. Therefore, by all rights and common sense, English should also be included as one of the compulsory languages that immigrants could choose to speak.

By the way, I doubt this will pass because too complicated to enforce.

Unfortunately it will pass, SVP have great influence in CH rural areas and as long as they keep showing the natives that there's a threat from foreign immigrants, the average native will always vote yes....it's not the big cities that make a difference in votes

NotAllThere 19.12.2010 12:27

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Faltrad (Post 1048897)
There would ust be fewer high skilled mother tongue English speakers, but more German, French and Italian speaking skilled immigrants.

Bit of a pain for the multinationals who NEED good English speakers in their HQ to communicate with the rest of the world.

Faltrad 19.12.2010 13:02

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
I never said it wouldn't be painful, I said there will be enough people to fill in the positions. And I was NOT implying the English speakers would totally disappear. English as a foreign language is rarely insufficient to make money. It sounds nicer in real English, but money making is not about beauty of poetry.

marton 19.12.2010 13:18

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Maybe the SVP shot themselves in the foot? I do not see this idea will restrict people coming in!
From Wikipedia
"A majority of the world's French-speaking population lives in Africa. According to the 2007 report by the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie, an estimated 115 million African people spread across 31 Francophone African countries can speak French as either a first or a second language" :D

st2lemans 19.12.2010 13:18

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by olygirl (Post 1048942)
All children in Switzerland are required to learn English at school.

No, they aren't.

At least not in Ticino.

Tom

native 19.12.2010 13:25

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Slightly off topic, but I'd really like to see English becoming an official language in Switzerland.

jrspet 19.12.2010 13:29

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
I'd prefer that it did not - English is already supported unofficially in many ways. We did have a thread somewhere about English being an official language in CH, but escapes me for the moment.

native 19.12.2010 13:36

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by marton (Post 1048995)
Maybe the SVP shot themselves in the foot? I do not see this idea will restrict people coming in!

That was exactly my point. Who are the troublemakers the SVP doesn't like? Will this proposal do anything to keep them out? (No.) Might it have a very adverse effect on the Swiss economy? (Clearly.) I understand that this is mostly propaganda for the upcoming elections, but I really wonder why they didn't come up with something where they wouldn't have the corporate unions against them...

marton 19.12.2010 13:39

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by native (Post 1049001)
Slightly off topic, but I'd really like to see English becoming an official language in Switzerland.

Probably more likely than Swiss German becoming an official language.

As an aside I assume this idea would prevent Swiss Germans coming in because it is not an official language :)

They would also have to staff every Swiss embassy with qualified speakers of each official language to carry out these tests. You could not carry out tests with non-qualified testers? That would lead to a lot of appeals & claims of unfairness.

All sounds a bit impractical.

Mowvich 19.12.2010 13:46

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by native (Post 1049010)
That was exactly my point. Who are the troublemakers the SVP doesn't like? Will this proposal do anything to keep them out? (No.) Might it have a very adverse effect on the Swiss economy? (Clearly.) I understand that this is mostly propaganda for the upcoming elections, but I really wonder why they didn't come up with something where they wouldn't have the corporate unions against them...

Well, the point of SVP is not mainly about crime but the increase of population which the government apparently cannot cope with, Swiss population doubled up in the past 10-15 years, with limited amount of land, limited resources it became definitely a nightmare nowadays to accommodate more immigrants, as most of the residents in CH who have been here long enough know, the prices have increased immensely in the past 10 years while infrastructure isn't really offering the same quality of service as before.

One other main issue is the security, taking an example Geneva with 1400 police members who did the same study and have the same qualifications, though only 300 are on patrol and the rest are admins in office as they refuse to have irregular hours and where originally hired for office work, today it's really hard to convince a CH citizen to join the police forces as the work / hours are pretty harsh, recently a campaign of hiring ran over 1 year span on daily basis with no positive results.

SVP is just dealing with problem from the prospect of not investing more to accommodate the current population but rather limit / reduce the immigration level.

Mowvich 19.12.2010 13:51

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by marton (Post 1049012)
Probably more likely than Swiss German becoming an official language.

As an aside I assume this idea would prevent Swiss Germans coming in because it is not an official language :)

They would also have to staff every Swiss embassy with qualified speakers of each official language to carry out these tests. You could not carry out tests with non-qualified testers? That would lead to a lot of appeals & claims of unfairness.

All sounds a bit impractical.

Totally valid point but the average CH citizen located in a rural area doesn't get always the same sort of thinking as you do now, as SVP make sure they deliver facts / false facts that only serve their campaigns and targets, i would see this initiative getting great success tbh.

Faltrad 19.12.2010 13:51

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by marton (Post 1049012)
They would also have to staff every Swiss embassy with qualified speakers of each official language to carry out these tests. You could not carry out tests with non-qualified testers? That would lead to a lot of appeals & claims of unfairness.

All sounds a bit impractical.

These tests exist for German in Goethe Institutes and for French in the network of centres culturels. That covers the basic needs, Switzerland itself would have little to do for it.

This idea of language tests for immigrants including so called explats untertains me to a seldom achieved level by other topics :msngrin:

tkn 19.12.2010 13:55

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 1048908)
When I first moved to Switzerland, I moved to Zurich, but didn't speak German.

When I finally was starting to get comfortable with German (after four years), I moved to Lugano, but didn't speak Italian.

I've been in Ticino 20 years, and only in the past few years has my Italian gotten to the point that I'm semi-fluent.

BUT, before coming to Switzerland, I did speak, read, and write fluent French, so, while I've never lived in the French speaking part, I have always been totally fluent in one of the Swiss languages!

However, if they want to make it a requirement to be fluent in the language of the region where you live, most Swiss would have a problem if they are not in their home canton.

Tom

Perhaps use English as the "common" language. That is how it works in a country with over 20 official languages.

native 19.12.2010 14:03

Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mowvich (Post 1049017)
Swiss population doubled up in the past 10-15 years

In the past 20 years it grew by 15%.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mowvich (Post 1049017)
the prices have increased immensely in the past 10 years

y-o-y change in consumer prices: 0.2%


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