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Two recent EU reports look at asylum procedures for children and integration for child refugees

Summary:

New reports from European Asylum Support Office and European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Date of Publication:
04 December 2019

Two recent EU reports look at asylum procedures for children and integration for child refugees

04 December 2019
EIN

Two EU reports on child asylum seekers were released last month that are worth highlighting.

The EU's European Asylum Support Office (EASO) published a 60-page report on asylum procedures for children, which you can read here.

24 EU+ countries contributed to the report, though the UK was not one of them, and the report's publication follows a consultation to gather national practices and policies on asylum procedures for children.

EASO says the purpose of the report is to identify gaps and areas of diverging practise in EU states, as well as highlighting good practices adopted and providing key recommendations to strengthen the protection of children in the EU.

Section 2 of the report explores the implementation of the best interests of the child principle in the asylum procedure by the national authorities, while section 3 maps the safeguards and special conditions granted to children in the asylum procedure.

The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) last month released a 136-page report looking at the integration of young refugees in the EU available here.

This report examines the integration of young people between 16 and 24 years of age who arrived in the EU in 2015 and 2016 as asylum applicants. It covers the five EU states with the highest numbers of arrivals during that time (Austria, France, Germany, Italy and Sweden) and Greece, given the particular challenges it faces as a first EU member state of arrival.

FRA explains: "The report uses a qualitative case study approach. It is based on semi-structured interviews conducted with experts as well as people in need of international protection, in 15 locations spread among six EU Member States. The purpose of the case studies is not empirical generalisation in the statistical sense but to provide a description and in-depth understanding of a complex social issue, distilling drivers of and obstacles to the integration of young refugees. The use of multiple sources of evidence, i.e. interviews and focus groups with experts as well as international protection holders, guarantees the internal validity of the research findings."

FRA continues: "The report paints a multifaceted picture with many good initiatives and promising practices. It also shows major gaps and challenges, many of which remain unaddressed. It reveals that measures taken in one policy field often affect the degree to which individuals are able to enjoy their rights in other fields. This points to the need for better coordination both between ministries and between levels of governance (national, regional and local). Gaps in one area have an impact on other areas."

BBC News noted that FRA warned in the report that Europe is in danger of creating a "lost generation" of young refugees and it urged EU member states to speed up asylum procedures, simplify family reunification and provide more housing.