Fundamental Rights Situation of Irregular Migrants in the European Union (FRIM)

Keywords: National migration policies, European policy

Certain fundamental social rights are only available to persons lawfully residing in a country. Irregular immigrants have no legal status and are therefore most vulnerable to exploitation and discrimination in key areas of social life. They are affected by formal barriers to the enjoyment and exercise of rights. More often, however, it is practical obstacles which discourage irregular immigrants to approach public service providers or courts for fear of being identified as irregular an consequently removed from the territory. This results, for instance, in persons in need of urgent medical treatment not seeking health care or victims of serious violations not seeking justice.

The aim of FRIM is to examine key aspects of the situation of irregular immigrants in the European Union  (EU) in order to assess the extent to which their fundamental rights are respected and protected. Areas covered by the research include health, housing, education, social care, employment status and fair working conditions and access to remedies against violations and abuse.

Furthermore, FRIM provides policymakers with a scientific basis with which to take actions required to ensure that the fundamental rights of irregular immigrants are protected. By examining current problematic situations and documenting good practices, FRIM also intends to give practitioners practical tools to promote the rights of irregular immigrants.

Below are the FRIM outputs, all with varying release dates and some of which have already been published. When that is the case, a link has been provided to access the report and video.

(1) A comprehensive, comparative report on the fundamental rights situation of irregular immigrants in the EU 27 Member States, based on desk research and a comprehensive survey of existing research, data gathered through structured questionnaire from public authorities and civil society stakeholders, legal and policy analysis. The report was released in November 2011, at the FRA's Fundamental Rights Conference titled "Dignity and Rights of Irregular Migrants" in Warsaw, Poland. You can access the report here, along with a short teaser video that the FRA produced for the conference and includes excerpts from PICUM's upcoming webdocumentary titled "Undocumentary".

(2) A Case Study on access to health care for irregular migrants analyses data and information collected through empirical fieldwork research in 10 selected EU Member States (DE, IE, EL, ES, FR, IT, HU, PL, BE, SE). This report was released in October 2011 and can be found here, along with a short video from the FRA discussing highlights from the report.

(3) A Case Study on irregular immigrants employed as domestic workers in 10 selected EU Member States (DE, IE, EL, ES, FR, IT, HU, PL, BE, SE). This report was released in May 2011 and can be found here, along with a short video from the FRA discussing highlights from the report.

Project duration: December 2009 -March 2011 Funded by: Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) 
Project Coordination: Albert Kraler (ICMPD) 
Project partners: The Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM), Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS)The Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP) and International Centre for Migration Policy and Development.

Contact Details

Ms. Devin M. Cahill
Programme Officer (and former Project Officer- FRIM)
PICUM- Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants
Rue du Congres/Congresstraat 37-41, post box 5
1000 Brussels- Belgium

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