Pucafreu Resarch Project

MIGRINTER (CNRS) was the coordinating body on the PUCAFREU research project (« Promoting Unaccompanied Children’s Access to Fundamental Rights in the European Union ») whilst leaning on a network of 5 partner organisations in the Member States which made up the geographical scope of the project : « Hors la Rue » (France), Service Droit des Jeunes (Belgium), « Fondation La Merced Migraciones » (Spain),  « ASGI – Associazioni per glistudigiuridicisull’immigrazione » (Italy), and the « PARADA » Foundation (Romania). The University of Roma Spaienza (Italy) also brought its expertise to the project as an associated partner.

The main objective of the project was to analyse the reasons which hinder the access of unaccompanied and separated children lacking protection to their fundamental rights guaranteed by international legislation and to promote a better access to these rights.

The general absence of statistics documenting the living conditions of migrant children neglected by child protection services justified the undertaking of such a study in 5 countries: Belgium, Spain, France and Italy as countries of destination or transit and Romania as a country of origin for this type of migration. The originality of this study was to explore the perceptions of the children and young people met during the study, whilst collecting their stories regarding their own situation and their experiences within child protection services in the case that they had access.

Firstly, the research contained a theoretical analysis of the legal questions, essentially concerning the interpretation and adequate application of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child to the situation of unaccompanied and separated children living in a EU Member State.

Once the construction of a common methodology was completed, research in the field was simultaneously conducted, between the autumn of 2011 and the summer of 2012, in the 5 States which constituted the scope of the project. This research aimed to explore the living conditions and the activities of unaccompanied and separated children lacking protection in each of these countries, the eventual difficulties faced by them in order accesstheir fundamental rights as well as the reasons explaining their lack of protection.

The results of the different studies undertaken have shown a heterogeneity which is principally linked to the different patternsoftreatment and care of this population, resulting in different profiles and realities in each territory. Nevertheless, the research highlighted the general deficiencies of institutional practices and inadequate treatment, provoking the expulsion of migrant children from State protection, which in itself is contrary to the standards of international law.

PUCAFREU Conference

The provisional results of the PUCAFREU research were presented during the International conference « Unaccompanied and separated children lacking protection in Europe : What reasons lead to their lack of protection ? » which took place at the Maison de Sciences de l’Homme et de la Société in Poitiers from the 22nd-24th October 2012 Around a hundred …

Minutes : Parallel workshops

Parallel workshops Workshop in French: Professionals working with Unaccompanied Children, difficulties, outcomes and paradoxes. In the French workshop, moderated by Alexandre Le Clève, professionals from various disciplines confronted their practices and underlined the complementarity of their approaches to build an efficient network around Unaccompanied children. First, Claire Poulain (Judge, France) explained the role of the …

Minutes : International Conference

Minutes of the Legal seminar and the International conference Opening seminar : « Legal frameworks regarding Unaccompanied Children : European and French levels » During the seminar chaired by Florian Aumond (Lecturer in Public Law, University of Poitiers, France), Perrine Dumas (Lecturer in Public Law, University of Rouen, France), Assiogbon Koueviakoe (Lecturer in Public Law, CNFPT, …

Working paper

The first phase of the legal analysis was the subject of a collective publication in English, coordinated by Philippe Lagrange, Professor in Public Law at the University of Poitiers, and Daniel Senovilla. This work entitled « The legal status of unaccompanied children within international, European and national frameworks. Protective standards versus …

National reports

Four national reports (written by the local researchers in charge of the project) were also published. These publications offer a more detailed insight into the different national contexts studied. Notably, the national reports contain the particularities of the legal treatment of unaccompanied children in the different national contexts; the implementation of the …

Comparative report

Firstly, the Comparative report presents the achievements and the methodological difficulties and limits of this multinational research project. It then offers a panorama of the living conditions, the problems regarding the access to fundamental rights and the obstacles faced by this population in order to benefit from adapted care provisions in the …