Fri, Oct 17, 2003 - Page 2 News List

Foreign spouses face Taiwan quiz

By Cody Yiu  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Ministry of the Interior will next month begin interviewing couples in which one spouse is a foreigner to better understand their situations and gauge what assistance they might need.

"According to our statistics, 280,756 foreign spouses, both brides and grooms, will be included in the interview process," said Hsieh Ai-ling (謝愛齡), director of the ministry's Population Administration Department.

The home interviews, which will start on Nov. 7, are part of a ministry project called "Foreign and Chinese spouses living situation investigation program in 2003."

"Our goal is to understand the living situations of foreign spouses to provide further assistance if needed, that's all," Hsieh said.

In August, the ministry conducted a trial run of the project in Keelung City, Kaohsiung County and Penghu County.

The project will now include the whole country, including Kinmen and Matsu.

About 5,300 village and borough wardens and officials from local population offices will conduct the interviews to find out: basic profiles of foreign spouses and their Taiwanese spouses; the condition of the marriage; how many children they have; their living, financial and work situation; medical needs and guidance needs.

In each region, city and county governments will supervise the interviewers and reviewers, who will analyze the results.

The ministry has asked for the cooperation of foreign spouses and their family members in this interview process.

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