Unaccompanied and Separated Children (UAC) are among those most vulnerable in the refugee and migrant population in Greece. Many UAC can be held in police cells designed only for short-term stay in degrading conditions. They can also find themselves staying in overcrowded hotspots under unsafe and very poor conditions or living in the streets. Inefficient identification, gaps in age assessment procedures, insufficient appropriate shelters and the lack of an effective guardianship system, further endanger their rights and deprive them from effective protection.
During 2019 and 2020, the ECtHR granted interim measures in several cases concerning UAC and indicated to the Greek authorities to transfer the applicants from detention to safe accommodation. RSA represents unaccompanied children in asylum procedures including cases where they seek to reunify with their families in other EU Member States. The organisation’s lawyers have also filed applications on their behalf before the European Court of Human Rights seeking their transfer from detention in police cells or confinement in a camp to appropriate accommodation.