The EU CONNECT project: ‘Identifying good practices in, and improving, the connections between actors involved in reception, protection and integration of unaccompanied children in Europe’
Coram Children’s Legal Centre, together with Save the Children Sweden, UNHCR’s Bureau for Europe, NIDOS in the Netherlands, Save the Children Italy, Don Calabria, the Italian Ministry of Labour and Social Policies in Italy and the County Administration in Västra Götaland in Sweden received funding from the EU for a 12 month project CONNECT – ‘Identifying good practices in, and improving, the connections between actors involved in reception, protection and integration of unaccompanied children in Europe’, starting in September 2013.
The EU CONNECT Project has looked at reception, protection and integration policies for unaccompanied migrant children, focussing on how actors work individually and together to respond to the rights of these children and fulfil their EU law obligations. By mapping practice in the partner countries and the development of tools, the purpose of the CONNECT project was to contribute concrete and practical measures that support actors better to address the needs and rights of these children. In the UK Garden Court Chambers have been the main implementing partner, producing a report on the treatment of unaccompanied migrants in the UK, as well as a tool to assist professionals working with these children in legal and judicial proceedings.
- UK tool ‘Standards to ensure that unaccompanied migrant children are able to fully participate: A tool to assist actors in legal and judicial proceedings’
- Final project report: the identification, reception and protection of unaccompanied children
- The five practical tools developed by the national partners that took part in the project are available here.
As part of the project, a conference, held at Freshfields in London on 19th September 2014, brought together a range of experts and practitioners to promote co-operation between different actors in legal and judicial proceedings involving unaccompanied and trafficked migrant children, the development of children’s courts, the particular needs of unaccompanied children with special needs because of disability or being victims of human trafficking, unaccompanied children who go missing from care and the need for multi-agency participation when collecting information for the determination of and application by a child for asylum or other forms of international protection. Presentations from the conference workshops can be accessed below:
- Keynote address by Justice McCloskey: Immigration, asylum and children: The cry of the weak and helpless
The child’s right to participate in asylum and immigration proceedings
- Refugee Council Legal Advice research – Judith Dennis, Refugee Council
- Enabling unaccompanied migrant children to fully participate in asylum and immigration proceedings – Adrian Matthews, Office of the Children’s Commissioner
The need for a durable solution for unaccompanied children
- Children in asylum procedures: Child Notices: country of origin reports 2013-2015 – Majorie Kaandorp, UNICEF Netherlands
- Failed asylum-seekers- what do their cases show us about a durable solution? – Sheona York, Kent Law Clinic
Locating child trafficking within the wider child protection system
- The role of the Local Safeguarding Children Board in combating Child Trafficking – Paul Hewitt, London Borough of Hounslow
- Child trafficking in the wider child protection system – Chloe Setter, ECPAT UK
The multi-agency approach to children going missing from care
- Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hubs – Pan London Work – Detective Inspector Mark Clark, Metropolitan Police