Tuesday, December 9, 2014

PICUM working group: Returns Directive and Criminalisation of Migration

The past week the president of the Greek Forum of Refugees, Yonous Muhammadi, attended in Brussels the workshops organized by PICUM (Platform for International Cooperation of Undocumented Migrants) together with representatives of more than other twenty organizations from all over Europe. The objetive of this meetings is to improve our experience in cases of migration policies and particulary in this workshop, the main goals were among others:

-To ensuring compliance with fundamental rights of migration control mechanisms.

-Addressing criminalisation practices and their disproportionate interference with migrants’ fundamental rights.

-To present upcoming developments and opportunities at global level.

In theses workshops a lot of issues were treated, but among them the use of prolongued and systematic detention in Greece, and the detention of children and families were the most important to us.

Regarding the points that are primordial for Greek Forum of Refugees during 2015, we pointed:

-Finish with the forzed push-backs in the borders and the deaths of thounsands of people in the sea.

-To improve the effectiveness of the asylum procedure in Greece and end with the unfair treatments refugees get in detention centers. Also to unite all the asylum system in Europe to have common laws in every country.

-To increase the integration policies in Greece to achieve total equality among all citizens.

And focusing on children, here you can read the letter all the organizations wrote together to ask new EU Commissioner for Migration and Home Affairs to ensure the rights of all migrant children:

"Welcoming Dimitris Avramopoulos in his position as new EU Commissioner for Migration and Home Affairs, a group of 26 organisations asked the Commissioner in a joint letter on 8 December 2014 to take measures to realise the rights of all children affected by migration.

The undersigned organisations call on Mr Avramopoulos to personally commit, in his role as EU Commissioner, to take measures to realise the rights of every child affected by migration, regardless of their or their parents’ migration status, and to address all violations of their rights, as a priority within his mandate.

The organisations highlight the need to expand existing EU frameworks protecting specific groups of migrant children to ensure that all children affected by migration, including those who are accompanied by their parents or other caregivers, have their rights upheld in policy and practice.

The legislative and political developments in recent years promoting child rights across all EU action, and specifically in protecting specific groups of migrant children in specific circumstances, are positive. However, the current status-based protection framework remains fragmented and uneven, and many migrant children in vulnerable situations are falling through the gaps, particularly when they are undocumented. This is also recognised in the European Parliament resolution adopted in November 2014 to mark the 25th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

The organisations also urge the EU Commissioner to take targeted actions to end the immigration detention of children and family separation through detention across the EU.

As the EU Commission reported earlier this year in its Communication on EU return policy , approximately one-third of member states report that they do not detain children and several are implementing or developing alternatives to detention that respect child rights, including their right to family unity. Building on these developments, and two major global civil society campaigns, ending the immigration detention of children and family separation through detention in the EU should be a concrete goal.

The letter to EU Commissioner, Dimitris Avramopoulos, follows a joint letter to the European Council addressing related recommendations, dated 22 May 2014. "

YOU CAN READ THE WHOLE LETTER IN THE FOLLOWING LINK: http://picum.org/picum.org/uploads/file_/JointLetterCommissionerAvramopolous_Dec.2014.pdf

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