WHY “FBS” ARE ONE OF EUFASA’s CONCERNS
High number of Foreign Born Spouses in diplomatic service
FBS constitute a sizeable proportion of the total number of spouses in the EU Foreign Services. Nearly a quarter of spouses are of foreign origin. In Belgium, for example, this percentage is as high as fifty percent. Some of these FBS have EU citizenship while others do not. However, the majority of FBS, totalling two-thirds, are from non-EU/EEA countries.
Obstacles facing Foreign Born Spouse
FBS face a number of obstacles regarding their career and lifelong employability. First, problems with citizenship of the “home country” and work permit could block the non-EU citizens from finding a job. Second, even though approximately a third of foreign born spouses are EU citizens, some may not have the language skills required and/or diplomas recognised in their adopted home country. Third, health cover insurance for the FBS and his/her children is often affected when he/she takes up employment. Finally, problems facing a FBS in case of divorce and loss of pension rights are of concern to all other spouses regardless of nationality.