Over the last 6 months the Bureau has investigated how different countries in Europe treat unaccompanied minors seeking asylum. The data reveal stark inconsistencies between countries, and a large gap between a country’s policies and the reality of the children who find themselves caught up in the asylum system. We have also spoken to unaccompanied children, and the people who support them, to create a snapshot of the situation in four countries across Europe: UK, Sweden, the Netherlands, and France.

All EU countries have forms of permanent and temporary asylum. But differences between those systems make it difficult to keep track of the unaccompanied children.

For example, France, Italy and Spain don’t register asylum seeking children the same way as other countries, such as the UK. Lone youths rarely apply for asylum in France because all unaccompanied children are automatically under the protection of the state regardless of their asylum status. This expires when they reach 18 and they must then apply for permanent asylum or a temporary leave to remain.

The Infographic can be seen at:  thebureauinvestigates.com/which_countries_treat_children_like_children/