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UNHCR, UNICEF and ISR adopt document to strengthen policies and practices for separated children in Europe

9 August 2017  

On 10 July 2017, the UNHCR, UNICEF and the International Rescue Committee have adopted the document 'the way forward to Strengthened Policies and Practices for Unaccompanied and Separated Children in Europe".

The purpose of this document is to support states in protecting separated children in Europe. The document highlights the importance of trust for an effective protection of separated children, and has identified guardians, cultural mediators, and the children and youth themselves as the key actors  for change and improvement. Furthermore, the document puts forward concrete recommendations for states to strengthen and harmonise their policies and practices concerning the protection of separated children, and to ensure that children can access procedures and solutions in accordance with their best interests.

The recommendations focus on 7 different areas of improvement, which are:

1. Identification, registration and age assessments
2. Guardianship and legal representation
3. Care arrangements and the provision of appropriate services
4. Comprehensive solutions in children’s best interests
5. Participation of children
6. Best interests of the child in national child protection and asylum systems
7. Heavy bureaucracy and administration  

SCEP welcomes the document and calls on states to improve the protection of separated children in Europe.


Separated Children in Europe Programme (SCEP) - coordinated by Defence for Children The Netherlands - PO BOX 11103 - 2301 EC - Leiden - 0031 (0)71 516 09 80 - info@scepnetwork.org