Difficult path to an apartment

If Slovenia doesn’t want refugees, then why does it even have a law saying, that they accept applications for international protection? Because they want to get money from EU?

Every day I ask myself – what can I, as a refugee, do, that Slovenian people would like me. When I search for an apartment, I don’t get it. When I search for a job, I don’t get it. I don’t understand why Slovenia even gives people international protection, if we can’t live normally in this country after we get it.

Some people say that they like refugees. They are nice and they talk to us. But when we ask them if they would rent us an apartment, they say that they are very sorry, but they just can’t. Even if you have money to pay them. Would Slovenia like that refugees sleep on the streets? I imagine that people wouldn’t like that either.

Refugees are humans, just like everybody else. Our blood is red. We have 10 fingers. We are just like everyone else. Some good, some bad. If some refugees make problems, that doesn’t mean that we all make problems. Just as Slovenians are not all the same, we are not all the same. On TV they say that Arabs are terrorists. Well, I’m not. And I think it’s stupid that I need to prove this on every step and try to persuade people I’m not a terrorist. I ran away from terrorists! I would never leave if I didn’t have to run away from them.

Sometimes I get a feeling that people here believe refugees don’t know how to use apartments. So they don’t want to rent them to us. Even the interview inspector at the asylum home asked me if I lived in a house or in a tent. Let me tell you that I have a university degree and I come from a well situated family. Before I left, I lived in a nice house.

Some people lived in worse circumstances, but that doesn’t mean they are terrorists. It just means they were poor. In any case, we all know how to use a toilet, a bathroom, a kitchen. I can’t even imagine what people, who don’t want to rent us an apartment, think. In asylum home they asked me if I know how to use the TV. The people who will decide my faith apparently think that all Arabs live in a cave and cook dinosaurs over fire.

When I lived in my country I thought that Europeans are open-minded and free thinkers. I thought that Arabs are close-minded and backwards. But now this picture in my head is constantly falling apart. I see that Slovenians are very open, when they meet people from the west, for example from USA or Germany. When they meet us, they aren’t like that. Even if we show them we have money to pay the apartment. They always ask: ”Where did you get this money?” Why do they ask me that? Money is money. And I work for it. Just like everybody else.

It’s usually easier for refugees to hire rooms in apartments, where other refugees already live. Some owners decide to rent rooms only to refugees, because they can charge us more for shitty holes they call rooms. They know we are desperate. So we live together, we talk in our own language and we don’t meet or connect with a lot of Slovenian people. At the same time, they expect us to integrate. How? I know that we all want to live together with Slovenians, far away from the refugee depression, to be forced to learn the language and the new customs. But we can’t.

So I ask myself all the time, why is Slovenia even pretending in front of EU, that they are accepting the refugees, if we can’t even rent an apartment.

N, Palestine