More humane reception conditions for asylum seekers
Limited grounds for detention, better detention conditions, swifter access to the labour market and an early assessment of possible medical or psychological needs are among the improvements to the current EU rules on the reception and treatment of asylum seekers endorsed by the European civil liberties committee.
The draft legislation lays down a set of standards for the reception and treatment of asylum seekers, concerning in particular detention grounds, detention conditions, detention of vulnerable persons, access to the labour market and identification of special needs.The draft law, which has been agreed provisionally with the Council, modifies the current directive dating from 2003.
Under the agreed text, an asylum seeker could only be detained for the following reasons:
- to check his/her identity;
- to verify the elements of his/her application for international protection;
- to decide on his/her right to enter the member state's territory;
- to protect national security and public order;
- to prepare his/her return to his home country if the member state "can substantiate on the basis of objective criteria (…) that there are reasonable grounds to believe that he makes the application for international protection merely in order to delay or frustrate the enforcement of the return decision";
- in the context of a transfer to another member state, under the "Dublin II" regulation on responsibility for asylum seekers.