Training of Lawyers on EU Immigration and Asylum Law 3

Context

Even if migration is not a new phenomenon in the European Union (EU), it is evolving very fast and in various directions.

Geographically, migration flows are not just limited to the central Mediterranean (as has been traditionally the case), but migratory pressure into the EU is coming from four additional main routes: Eastern Mediterranean, Western Balkans, Western Mediterranean (which includes even the EU’s outermost region such as the Canary Islands), and Eastern Europe (especially since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022).

Demographically, the past months have been characterised by a considerable increase in the number of women migrants, who are subject to human trafficking for sexual purposes or labour exploitation, for instance in domestic work as indicated by the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA). Also, the number of children on the move remains particularly high.

The current migratory situation creates difficulties not only in relation to the management of huge flows of migrants but also in ensuring protection of their fundamental rights. This protection is necessary both regarding health and food, but also regarding legal security that the migrants can claim under international law and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Migrants and asylum seekers (regardless of whether they are refugees or not) also have rights protected under the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. It is therefore of crucial importance for the EU to have lawyers properly trained on immigration and asylum issues deriving from the Charter.

Needs assessment

TRALIM 3 is the successor of the successful TRALIM 1 and TRALIM 2 projects, where ELF and its partners already trained 1.876 lawyers from different Member States on EU asylum and immigration law. Both projects also demonstrated that the training needs of lawyers in this area are broad, diverse and ever-evolving for two main reasons: first, migration towards the EU is a complex socio-economic phenomenon that will continue to exist (so more lawyers need to be trained in this field); and second, even lawyers who were already trained through TRALIM 1 and TRALIM 2 will have with TRALIM 3 the chance to (a) acquire a more advanced knowledge by focusing on the specific situations of certain groups of migrants such us children on the move, women and people with disabilities, and/or (b) participate physically in short visits to reception centres or other institutions dealing with immigrants and asylum seekers in other partner countries. In other words, the need is not only limited to an increase in the number of trained lawyers, but also in more specialised and more cross-border training. In brief, there are significant training needs for lawyers in EU immigration and asylum law, with training solutions available through the TRALIM network, and with lawyers willing to continue assuming their responsibility as guarantors of migrants’ rights through a new training project which scales up the effort undertaken by the two previous editions of TRALIM.

Objectives

The overall objective is to train 716 lawyers from 7 EU Member States (Italy, Spain, Cyprus, France, Poland, Greece and the Ireland) through the organisation of training on immigration and asylum law (TRALIM seminars) and on the law relating to migrants who are in a vulnerable situation (TRALVU seminars), plus short visits to to Italy, Spain, Greece, Cyprus, France and Poland. Further to the training activities, important ready-to-use material on asylum and immigration will be produced in the frame of this project.

Activities

  • Organisation of 15 fully cross-border seminars (8 TRALIM seminars and 7 TRALVU seminars).
  • Organisation of short visits to Italy, Spain, Greece, Cyprus, France and Poland where a total of 67 EU lawyers will meet with relevant actors working in the field of immigration and asylum in these Member States in order to share experiences and best practices.
  • Production of ready-to-use training material of two types:

(a) a manual of best practices on asylum and immigration in 7 EU jurisdictions to be drafted by experts in each Member State;

(b) material resulting from the seminars.

  • Promotion of networking for lawyers participating in the seminars and in the short visits so informal networks of lawyers working on asylum and immigration issues from 7 EU Member States can be created.

Methodology

The organisation of seminars and short visits is the best possible way to ensure two of the main aspects of this project: high-level training for lawyers, and the opportunity to use the seminars and the short visits for networking purposes. The seminars will last one day and there will be participants from all the partners’ Member States in each seminar.

Partner countries

CountryOrganisation
NetherlandsEuropean Lawyers Foundation (ELF) – Coordinator
ItalyItalian Bar Association (CNF)
SpainSpanish Bar Association (CGAE)
PolandPolish Bar of Attorneys-At-Law (KRRP)
GreeceAthens Bar Association (DSA)
FranceParis Bar Association (BDP)
CyprusCyprus Bar Association (CBA)
IrelandThe Law Society of Ireland (LSI)