The Basque government has opened a new legal advice office for immigrants after attending 23,592 consultations last year, 40% of which were in Gipuzkoa. The majority were Latin American women. Responding to the growing need for foreigners after arriving in the Basque Country, the Department for Equality, Justice and Social Policy has strengthened its welcome model with the Basque Care Network, the opening of five more ‘Aholku Sarria’ locations. Legal on immigration matters, throughout the Basque Country (in San Sebastián, Bilbao, Mutriku, Durango and Ermúa). It will also reinforce the existing offices in Errentaria, Zarautz and Gastiz. This was announced on Thursday morning by Councilor Neria Melgosa, who said that ‘Aholku Saria’ currently has about thirty offices at street level.
The mission of this network is to individually consider the demands of migrants and those of their origin. The program also includes professional advice from public and private agencies that serve foreign-born people. Last year, more than 23,000 questions were answered from individuals throughout the Basque Country, as well as 4,276 questions from professionals. 248, on their part, were referred to one of the three Basque Bar Associations.
The profile of those coming to ‘Aholku Saria’ is clear: women from Latin America. In fact, 59% of private consultations made during 2023 were made by women. For their part, Colombia and Morocco are, “so far”, the main nationalities of users. In terms of age, the group between 30 and 50 stands out and “their interest is focused on accessing the labor market.” These consultations generally relate to authorization and renewal of residence due to social roots, training or families, as well as renewal of residence for work or family reunification reasons.