On 29 March 2017 Italy’s parliament passed a new law with a broad majority, introducing stricter safeguards for unaccompanied children in the country. Some provisions confirm good practices developed at the administrative level, others are innovative and put Italy at the forefront of the protection of this category of vulnerable migrants.
The reform was welcomed by humanitarian groups, including Save the Children who stated that it introduces the most elaborate system for child protection in Europe.
Among the protective measures introduced by the new law, it is worth to recall:
- the insurance that unaccompanied children will not be subjected to rejection at the border and forced return
- a reduction of the time they spend in first-line reception centres
- the establishment of a structured and streamlined national reception system with minimum standards
- the promotion of guardianship for children, foster care and host families for children
- the harmonization and improvement of age assessment in a child-sensitive manner.
Marcello Di Filippo, 8 Aprile 2017