Missing autistic man may have joined refugees

The mother of an autistic man who went missing in Vienna last month fears that he may have joined a group of asylum seekers in a quest “to explore the world”.

Missing autistic man may have joined refugees
Arian with his mother. Photo: private

Arian Saraie is 22 years old and requires medication. He went missing on November 9th and was last seen at a care centre in the Währing district. His mother, Regina Schramm-Saraie, told the Kurier newspaper that her son is at an age where he “wants to be more independent and has an urge to explore the world”.

She described Arian as sociable and said that he often approaches people. She thinks that it’s possible that he might have joined a group of asylum seekers. “He may have tagged along with them. If he has food and feels good, he will be quiet and not make himself noticed. We hope that’s the case. But after such a long time we have to be prepared for the worst,” she said.

In September an 18-year-old youth with a mental disability disappeared from a Caritas children’s centre in Salzburg. The head of the centre, Eleonore Zach, said he had also wanted to travel and had joined a group of refugees who were taking a train to Munich in Germany. “No one noticed him on the train because he kept quiet,” she said. After he had spent three days at Munich’s main train station police questioned him and arranged for him to be safely returned to Salzburg.

Vienna police have now widened their search for Arian. “At the request of his family we are extending our investigation to the border crossings,” police spokesman Patrick Maierhofer said.

Anyone who has seen Arian or may know where he is should contact the police in Vienna on 01/31310-27361 or call the family’s hotline on 0650/9442147.


Diversity and jobs: How migrants contribute to Vienna’s economy

International business owners in Vienna bring in billions of euros in revenue and taxes each year, according to a recent survey by the Chamber of Commerce.

Diversity and jobs: How migrants contribute to Vienna's economy

New figures show that Vienna’s international entrepreneurs do more than simply boost diversity in Austria’s capital city – they also significantly contribute to the local economy.

The Wirtschaftskammer (Chamber of Commerce) has revealed that business owners in Vienna with a migration background generate € 8.3 billion in revenue and create around 45,500 jobs.

Plus, these companies pay around € 3.7 billion every year in taxes and duties, reports ORF.

READ MORE: Austrian presidential elections: Why 1.4 million people can’t vote

Walter Ruck, President of the Vienna Chamber of Commerce, said: “Companies with a migrant background not only enrich the diversity of the corporate landscape in Vienna, they are also an economic factor.”

Ruck added that more than 200 international companies move to the capital each year and said the diversity is helping Vienna to financially recover from the pandemic. 

The Chamber of Commerce considers a business owner to have a migration background if they were not born in Austria and/or they have a non-Austrian nationality.

READ ALSO: What are the rules on working overtime in Austria?

According to ORF, there are 34,000 entrepreneurs in Vienna with a migration background and 7,400 of those business owners have Austrian citizenship.

Additionally, 4,500 business owners have Slovakian nationality, 3,800 are from Romania and 2,600 have German citizenship.

The most popular business sector for people in Vienna with a migration background is retail, followed by real estate and technical services.