This following post is certainly not poetry but prosaic reality! It’s a blog post I just now have published on my blog My Swedish Corner (in Swedish). Many Americans are upset and worried these days after Trump has become president of US. As I see Americans read my poetry blog I thought maybe my story can give a little contribution and balance in your views.
I had an appointment for an MRI early this morning. My son came home late last night to be my supporter. I have seen this X-ray machine in picture, so I was doubtful if I would dare to expose myself to such an investigation … And I have a “pen pal” on a site from Brazil. A tough guy of the 61, a tattooed hard rock fan. This tough man recommended me to take someone with me for support – as he once was called to do this examination. And in spite he got six soothing syringes he was not been able to go through with it. And I listened to my friends advice and asked my son if he could come home to be my assistance. (I was tempted to terminate the appointment, but my son did not want to hear about that).
So my son arrived by train from Stockholm yesterday evening. And as often he took a taxi from the railway station to my home. The taxi driver was a man from a country in Africa. Taxi drivers are often migrants in Sweden.
Taxi drivers, bus drivers or cleaners – that is a common future for many foreigners coming to live in Sweden. As my son used to say “Sweden has most educated taxi drivers in the whole world”.
It’s so sadly badly true! When I lived in Uppsala for more than a decade ago, we had a young black and very smart young man as neighbor. He had two academic degrees from the University of Uppsala. And still he worked as a taxi driver. That is how it is here. We have in Sweden doctors, nurses, nuclear physicists and all sorts of highly skilled people who comes here in good trust and with a baggage being highly educated in sectors there we very much need people. Those migrants fights here for years only to get their good hopes dashed. Then if they can get the chance – they move to the United States or to Canada.
The taxi driver from yesterday is trained Bridge Construction Engineering. He has spent four years here to “validate” his training. And that is what the Swedish authorities obliged migrants to do, no exceptions. He has applied for a lots of jobs over the years and has not even been offered an interview at any time. So now he drives a taxi. But in the coming days he will leave Sweden and move to the United States. It took him about six months to get a Green Card. It took him about 6 weeks to get a job in the United States.
He said to my son, “Swedes are nice people, but the Swedish system is more racist than the United States.” So now Sweden lose another highly educated person – we actually need here!
The examples are many – for another example – a specialist trained nurse from USA were also forced to “validate” her training. But still she could not get a job in her specialty. She worked 10 years as an unqualified nurse assistant – never getting a job corresponding to her skills. Then she gave up and returned to the United States.
Note: this is the rule and not an exception of the labor market for migrants in Sweden. The problem for migrants is NOT the Swedish people’s attitudes – and it is not how “to learn the language” (as our politicians loves to nag about).
The problem is the system with Swedish authorities who methodically and effectively prevents people from other countries coming to work here. We have put racism into system. And it works excellent. Politicians imagine that even after about 7 years in Sweden, a person from another country has not yet received not even an offer of a job! And people who come here want jobs, not goodwill.
How long will we have it this way? It is shame, really!
Regarding my MRI investigation it went well. It had a touch of Science Fiction or of Kafka. But I’m glad I live in Linköping and not in Stockholm as my son – where the medical staff runs in the corridors instead of walking like normal people and work themselves to be completely burned out. While the local (conservative) community politicians of the city claims Stockholm’s health system provides a good health care for people and good working conditions for the stuff. They are apparently both blind and death.