Thursday, 17 February 2011

Asylum policy in Europe: ILGA's position

EU flag at the European ParliamentImage by European Parliament via Flickr
ILGA-Europe has produced a policy paper which describes the current European Union's legislation recast process on asylum. It explains ILGA-Europe’s proposals and positions.

Their key demands are:
  • The recast of the “Qualification Directive” and of the “Procedure Directive” should be the opportunity to enhance protection standards offered to people persecuted on the ground of their sexual orientation and gender identity;
  • The definition of the asylum seeker’s “family members” should be improved to clearly include same-sex partners;
  • A new European agency, the European Asylum Support Office, is about to be established. Its role in terms of dissemination of good practices and training of national asylum officers can be of significant importance in the future, and LGBT organisations should be prepared to have an input.
ILGA-Europe is monitoring this recast process, and providing its input to improve the existing legislation. They say they are in a position to engage in a dialogue with the European institutions during the whole recast process. Another of their inputs is to bring to their members a better comprehension of the European standards.

ILGA-Europe will regularly communicate with its membership at national level. Lobbying and advocacy targeting national governments are also very important, they say, and national LGBT organisations have a role to play.

Following the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, the recast directives and regulations will be adopted under the co-decision procedure, which is a reinforcement of the European Parliament’s role. However, the Council still has to adopt all the new legislative proposals by a qualified majority, and the debates are expected to be highly controversial.

Ilga Policy Paper on EU Asylum Recast
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