Protecting unaccompanied and separated children from Ukraine, International seminar
On 8 December 2022 in Warsaw, Poland, ICMPD in collaboration with the Polish Migration Forum Foundation (PFM), and the Association for Legal Intervention (SIP), organised the first international seminar as part of the ICMPD-led project “Comprehensive Support for People in a Vulnerable Situation in the Polish Migration Management System (KOMPLEKS).”
Large-scale displacement from Ukraine has led to growing concerns about individuals who were considered vulnerable before the outbreak of war, as well as those who became vulnerable as a result of their displacement, including children. Many children entering EU MS are accompanied by relatives or other caregivers who are not their legal guardians. Formalizing care and guardianship arrangements for them is therefore of utmost importance.
This international seminar looked at diverse solutions to the protection of unaccompanied and separated children from Ukraine, as well as the specific challenges faced by this group in selected EU Member States (Poland, Latvia, and Czechia). The meeting was attended by representatives of non-governmental organizations and research centres from Poland, as well as public institutions from Poland, Czechia and Latvia. Participants underlined, that the issue needs to be assessed from the perspective of the continuum of care, in order to ensure the highest level of care and protection. The other key issue stressed during the seminar was the secondary movements of unaccompanied and separated children (UASCs) under temporary protection and the urgent need for international coordination and control to prevent child protection concerns and ensure the best interests of children.