FRANCO, 24, ARGENTINA
I don’t want to migrate, but right now I feel like that is the only option for me. The last couple of years, Argentina has had its biggest recession in the last 20 years, which has led to social unrest and loss of civil and workers’ rights. I have been living in Buenos Aires my whole life, and I love my country, but right now the future here just seems so hopeless; every 10 years we have a crisis, a right-party wins and goes to the IMF (International Monetary Fund) and adjust the economic policies which in turn leads to people losing purchasing power. I mean, the increases are brutal – just the last three years the electricity and water bill have increased by more than a thousand percent. Also, the train and bus fares have increased with more than four hundred percent.
And yet wages hardly increase at all. For example, at my job I have had an increase from eighteen thousand argentine pesos to nineteen-thousand five hundred pesos the last year. But this increase is not even close to keeping up with the inflation: the average increase during the last year is fifty five percent. If you need to ask for credit in a bank, you have to pay sixty-two percent interest in one year.
If I get the necessary visas, I want to go to New Zealand or Australia. In both places I think it would be pretty easy to find a job, the weather is nice, and they are both first world countries. Most importantly, I already know the language. I used to want to go to Spain, as it has always been the first option for an Argentine. But these days it is hard to find work there, they don’t even have enough work for themselves.
I’m not sure of what I want to do in a foreign country, more than getting a job. I’m afraid that I will be discriminated against as an immigrant, and that I’ll probably have to do the worst kind of jobs. But as long as I can live properly and save some money, it will be alright. I guess the kind of jobs I would have to do would be in agriculture, or maybe construction. My girlfriend has a clothing brand, so she could work with that in any part of the world. Any other country would be easier than here.
LOTFI, 19, FRANCE
Mom and dad talk French a lot between each other, but mom talks French to us whilst dad doesn’t. We don’t talk French to them. Because… it’s just hard. Stressful. I talk Norwegian to all of my family. Sometimes I talk a bit of French to mom just to impress. It makes her happy. I’m the only one that knows relatively good french of my siblings, because we lived in France for 3 months after my older brothers moved out.