FRA was a panel speaker in a discussion on “Guaranteeing access to healthcare for undocumented migrants in Europe: What role can local and regional authorities play?”
The 12 December meeting was organised by the Committee of the Regions, PICUM and Eurocities. FRA referred to its research findings which highlighted the crucial role local authorities play in ensuring access to healthcare for irregular migrants. They also showed how irregular migrants’ fear of being apprehended by law enforcement authorities deters them from accessing healthcare services. As the apprehension and detection of irregular migrants also takes place at the local level, FRA drew the attention to its work on providing practical fundamental rights guidance on detection practices for law enforcement authorities and the principles expressed in the document “Apprehension of migrants in an irregular situation – fundamental rights considerations”. The concluding remarks by the organisers highlighted the difficult position of local and regional authorities, as they provide basic services, such as health and education, and are responsible at the same time for detecting irregular migrants.