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Publication date: 5 February 2018

Migration to the EU: five persistent challenges

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The top five persisting concerns after two years of FRA reporting are:

  1. Strict border management: Despite a significant drop in newly arriving asylum seekers in certain Member States, border management has become tougher in most EU Member States. Several re-introduced border controls and kept them throughout 2017. Migrants were also reportedly ill-treated by some police and border guards. In addition, some were not given the chance to apply for protection.
  2. Inadequate living conditions in reception centres even in several Member States were asylum applicants are falling. Violence against women and a lack of specialist support for vulnerable people like children and trauma victims also remain an issue.
  3. Restrictive asylum procedures in border or transit zones and delays in registering claims. Lengthy procedures or not sparing enough time for assessing claims also posed problems. In many EU Member States migrants lacked access to legal aid, interpretation and information.
  4. Leaving unaccompanied children vulnerable despite falling numbers. In most Member States, the quality of child reception facilities, appointment of guardians, access to the asylum procedure and obstacles related to family reunification remained key issues. Many received no or little education.
  5. Immigration detention should be a measure of last resort. However, the lack of legal assistance and information during detention, inadequate conditions and inhumane treatment, and immigration detention of vulnerable people remain key concerns.

It also reveals improvements in asylum systems and the professional capacity of staff since the 2015 migration peak.

The report also lists the top three concerns in each of the Member States covered.

The Agency collects data about the fundamental rights situation in Member States particularly affected by large migration movements. The reports cover 14 Member States: Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden.

FRA has published its migration overviews since September 2015.