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ALTERNATIVES TO DETENTION. Examples of Good Practices Samarie Wijekoon Löfvendahl Associate Legal Officer UNHCR Regional Office for the Baltic and Nordic Countries. Outline of todays presentation. Global debate on alternatives to detention. Examples of good practices.

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alternatives to detention

ALTERNATIVES TO DETENTION

ExamplesofGoodPractices

SamarieWijekoon Löfvendahl

Associate Legal Officer

UNHCR Regional Office for the Baltic and Nordic Countries

outline of todays presentation
Outline of todays presentation
  • Global debate on alternatives to detention.
  • Examples of good practices.
    • What do we mean by alternatives to detention?
    • Are alternatives effective?
  • Way forward.
global debate on detention
Global debate on detention
  • UN Working Group on ArbitraryDetention
  • UN SpeacialRapporteur on the Human Rightsof Migrants
  • UN HighComissioner for Human Rights
  • ParlimentaryAssemblyof the Council ofEurope& Special Rapporteur on the DetentionofAsylumSeekers and Irregular Migrants in Europe
  • UNHCR
global roundtable on alternatives to detention may 2011 1
Global Roundtable on Alternatives to Detention, May 2011 (1)

SummaryConclusions

  • Seekingasylum ≠ not a criminalact asylumseekersshould not be penalized.
  • No evidencedetentiondetersirregular migration.
  • Human Rightsconsequences + social/economiccosts compelimplementaionof alternatives.
  • Alternatives todetention part ofassessmentofnececcity and proportionality.
global roundtable on alternatives to detention may 2011 2
Global Roundtable on Alternatives to Detention, May 2011 (2)
  • Alternatives todetention ≠ alternative forms ofdetention or alternatives torelease.
  • Established by law + human rightsoversight
  • Treatmentwithrespect and dignity = constructiveengagement in process + canleadtovoluntaryreturn.
  • > 90% compliancewhenreleasedto proper alternatives.
  • More research needed.
alternatives to detention1
Alternatives todetention?
  • Whatdoes it mean?
    • Not systemized
    • Oftensome sort ofrestrictionoffreedomofmovement or liberty
    • Correspondto human rightssafeguards: to be strictlyregulated
    • Same proceduralsafeguardapply as todetention
  • Principlesofneccessity and proportionality!
examples of alternatives
ExamplesofAlternatives
  • Liberty - no detention
  • Release on condition
    • afterapplicationofasylum; if no prevailingconcerns
    • reporting or registration (most EU countries)
    • live at a designatedaddress or district
  • Can not be used in tooonerousway
    • not toorestrictive on the freedomofmovement
    • not requringtotravelvery long distanccesto register
  • Benefit for the state: minimal costs – use systems already in place.
  • Yet – under-utilised.
examples of alternatives 2
Examplesof alternatives (2)
  • Release on bail, bond, surety/guarantor
    • Bail: financialdepositwhich is forfeitif no-show
      • Remembera/smay not be abletopaylaresums
    • Bond: legal agreement (combinedwithsurety)
    • Surety/guarantor: guarantorpays the suretyif no-show
    • UK, Slovenia, Finland, Denmark
    • Lowcost for state
alternatives to detention 3
Alternatives todetention (3)
  • Community-basedsupervised release
    • Community organisation/NGO supervise
    • Government + NGO supervise
    • Governmentsupervise (Scotland, Belgium)
  • Electronic tagging or satellitetracking
    • Intrusive system
    • Not preventabsconding
alternatives to detention 4
Alternatives todetention (4)
    • Alternatives todetention – Effective and minimizecosts for government >90% compliance rate
  • Factorsthatinfluenceifasylumseekercomplywith release orders:
    • Provision of legal advice
    • Transparency and provision ofcomprehensible information from earlystage
    • Holistic approach – include all legal options availabletostay
    • Material support and accomodationthroughout process
    • Treatmentwithdignity, humanity and respectthroughout process
way forward
Way forward

What hinders the adoption and applicationof alternatives todetention?

Is it possibletofind an alternative thatwould be a viable option in Latvia?

Whatcould be lost and whatcould be won by resortingto the useof alternatives todetention?