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Whose children? Protecting unaccompanied migrant children in Europe: A case of diffused responsibility?

Whose children? Protecting unaccompanied migrant children in Europe: A case of diffused responsibility?
Whose children? Protecting unaccompanied migrant children in Europe: A case of diffused responsibility?
This paper examines the reasons behind the failure of EU and national policy interventions to protect unaccompanied migrant children’s (unaccompanied minors-UAMs) rights during the refugee crisis in Europe. By drawing on policy documents and empirical data, it is argued that the deficient protection of UAMs’ child rights was essentially a failure of responsibility allocation in line with the ‘bystander effect’ analytical explanation. While this argument does not disregard the role of other explanatory factors, such as the lack of European solidarity, poor legal enforcement and financial reasons, among others, it is claimed that the diffusion of responsibility (in theory and practice) between various policy systems at the national level, as well as between the EU and domestic levels, contributed to the failure to protect UAMs’ child rights across Europe.
children's rights, refugee crisis, unaccompanied minors
0927-5568
925-949
Iusmen, Ingi
696395c1-d60e-4fbd-aa2b-98aeecaa64b2
Iusmen, Ingi
696395c1-d60e-4fbd-aa2b-98aeecaa64b2

Iusmen, Ingi (2020) Whose children? Protecting unaccompanied migrant children in Europe: A case of diffused responsibility? International Journal of Children's Rights, 28 (4), 925-949. (doi:10.1163/15718182-28040006).

Record type: Article

Abstract

This paper examines the reasons behind the failure of EU and national policy interventions to protect unaccompanied migrant children’s (unaccompanied minors-UAMs) rights during the refugee crisis in Europe. By drawing on policy documents and empirical data, it is argued that the deficient protection of UAMs’ child rights was essentially a failure of responsibility allocation in line with the ‘bystander effect’ analytical explanation. While this argument does not disregard the role of other explanatory factors, such as the lack of European solidarity, poor legal enforcement and financial reasons, among others, it is claimed that the diffusion of responsibility (in theory and practice) between various policy systems at the national level, as well as between the EU and domestic levels, contributed to the failure to protect UAMs’ child rights across Europe.

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Accepted/In Press date: 27 April 2020
Published date: December 2020
Keywords: children's rights, refugee crisis, unaccompanied minors

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 439702
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/439702
ISSN: 0927-5568
PURE UUID: 5b75a8d1-8c4e-4553-9918-c180ee4be47e
ORCID for Ingi Iusmen: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6658-0667

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Date deposited: 30 Apr 2020 16:30
Last modified: 26 Nov 2021 03:01

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