The EBO act (Lag om eget boende – “Own living” act) applies to all asylum seekers. The EBO law means that those who come to Sweden, seeking asylum, is entitled to finding living on his or her own as opposed to (ABO – AnläggningsBOende) staying at one of the immigration services facilities during the asylum process.
Those who come to Sweden, seeking asylum, are allowed to live where they may chose and this is often with family, kin, friends or country men already here with a permanent or temporary residence permit.
The law came into effect in 1994.
Before the EBO law, asylum seekers and those who got residence permits had to settle down where the authorities decided until they got legal right to move.
A primary reason behind the EBO act was the discriminatory act of telling immigrants where to settle down and live. Since us Swedes are so incredibly dogoodery-ish, we can’t be discriminating. Can we?
The EBO act means that immigrants cluster where they can. Södertälje is one such place. Södertälje is now so Arabic that if you are unemployed and ethnic Swede you can not find work there unless you also speak Arabic.
Södertälje is the primary place for Syrians/Asyrians – Christians from Syria – in Sweden. But also for thousands of people from Iraq as the result of the two wars in Iraq. Södertälje had, in 2011, taken in as many Iraqi refugees as the US and Canada put together.
Needless to say, Christian Syrians and Muslim Arabs are not too fond of each other and there have been many conflicts between the two groups.
Malmö is another place where immigrants settle down to such a degree that it has turned into little Baghdad! As one immigrant Arab women told Swedish public radio; “It feels like home!”