|Background This report on "Streetlife . The situation of foreign citizens that beg" is commissioned by the Ministry of Justice and Security. Since around 2007, we have seen an increasing migration of foreign citizens begging in Norway, and a continuous public debate about this new migration, where politicians, public employees and ordinary citizens have participated. The debates have concerned questions of trafficking, organized crime and litter. Several measures have been discussed in order to handle this experienced problematic situation, from a ban on begging and deportation of foreign beggars, to humanitarian initiatives such as cheap public accommodation, sanitary stations and “relief work”. The survey has two main objectives: 1) to map out the situation of foreign citizens that beg, in their homeland and in Norway, and assess the scale of this begging, 2) to map out the experiences of welfare-institutions and private organisations involved in this group in Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim and Tromsø. Methods NOVA, by Ada I. Engebrigtsen, is responsible for the survey and report. Research assistant Johanna Fraenkel, at The Church City Mission in Oslo, and researcher Daniel Pop, at Ethno-Cultural Resource Center in Romania, have been subcontractors. Interviews and observations make up the basic methods for this survey, while the Romanian report is based on statistical material and literature. We have interviewed almost 80 persons among service providers, private contributors and beggars themselves. The commission covers four person months for Engebrigtsen, and two person months for Fraenkel and for Pop. Data collection was carried out between October 2013 and April 2014. The foreign citizen that beg in Norway The vast majority of foreign citizens begging in Norway (as in most European countries) are Romanian citizens, and belong to the minority that traditionally is called (and often call themselves) È›igani in Romania. The majority of these belong to the Roma-minority, some belong to other, similar minorities and some are majority Romanians. They make up between three and 10 percent of the Romanian population. This is circular migration; migrants are travelling between Romania and Norway, and new groups arrive when others leave. Most beggars travel over larger areas, than where they stay more permanently. Women in their 40-50ties dominate begging, but most women have arrived with husbands, sons and other relatives. Roma and other similar groups represent the most excluded, stigmatized and vulnerable segments of the Romanian population. A country-survey from 2010, shows that almost all employed persons were employed in the informal economy, and over 50 percent had no formal qualifications. The report from Romania shows systematic discrimination and exclusion in most fields of society. Governments have implemented several strategies and measures as response to demands from EU agencies, but the Roma seem to be caught in a vicious circle of exclusion from welfare benefits, with continuous marginalisation and deprivation as a result. The ambiguous situation of foreign citizens begging Foreign beggars suffer from substantial destitution in Norway as in Romania. Their most serious problem in Norway is that there are very few legal places to stay and to sleep. When the shelters organised by NGOs are full, many sleep in the streets, in abandoned houses etc. With the temperature dropping below 10 degrees Celsius, that is a dangerous option. Another problem is the increasing privatisation of public space. Private security service companies and some police officers are eager to send off foreign beggars whenever and wherever they stay. Our assessment of the scale of foreign persons begging in Norway is somewhere between 500 and 100 persons at any time, dependent on the season and Romanian religious holydays a.o. Begging or in search of work? The majority of our informants would prefer to work, but without qualification and language proficiency, they do not believe it is possible. Almost all have been workers; the oldest ones during the CeauÈ™escu era, the younger in other countries in Europe. Some also have had short-term work in Norway. This confirms their claim about preferring work to begging, and blurs the moral division between beggars and workers. NGOs and foreign citizens begging In Norway as in most European countries, NGOs are responsible for the provision of a minimum of social services to foreign persons begging. Some NGO employees claim that NGOs are substituting work that should be the reasonability of public agencies. Many point to the fact that more and more poor migrants from Europe outside Romania are arriving, and they compete for NGO services with the foreign beggars. In spite of this increase of migrating European poor, many NGOs experience diminished funding in 2014. Public services We have interviewed employees in Child Care services, in Social services, in health services and the Police about their involvement, and experience dealing with foreign citizens that beg. Child Care services in the three major cities have been involved with begging families from Romania, and have had some instances of abused and neglected children. They do, however, claim that it is difficult to bring these cases to court, partly because of the mobile situation of the families, and because they are foreign citizens. The Oslo Police and to some degree the Police in the other bigger cities, have been more or less heavily involved in this group. Social Services does not have contact with this group and health institutions do not register patients by nationality. Criminality Police reportsindicate that parts of the Romanians that come to Norway as beggars, or under pretence of begging, have criminal records from Romania and other European countries, or travel together with people with criminal records. How persons that beg are involved in crime, is however not clear. This problem seems, however, to be most serious in Oslo, where the Police experience this as a serious problem. Trafficking is also an issue. Both in Romania and in Norway there have been law-cases finding Romanians (also Roma) guilty of trafficking, mostly connected to prostitution, but also to begging. We will point to the fact that the definition of trafficking is, however, ambiguous, the scale is not known, and the grey zone between voluntary and forced migration and between cooperation and exploitation can make it hard to investigate cases and bring them to court. The report from Romania indicates that trafficking for begging, none the less, is on the increase, and calls for more research on the topic. Good Samaritans Finally, we will draw the attention to the many private citizens and groups of people all over the country who are engaged in easing the lives of poor Romanians begging, while they are in Norway or back home in Romania. This spontaneous contact between foreign persons that beg and Norwegian Citizens, together with the NGO- initiatives, creates an arena for social interaction. This commitment is important for improving the situation of foreign citizens begging in Norway.