Unaccompanied Child Refugees in Sweden

Unaccompanied migrant children in Sweden are experiencing delays and difficulties in getting critical care and support. Sweden has had an unprecedented increase in the arrival of unaccompanied children, but it should do more to ensure that all unaccompanied children get special protection, including swift processing of their asylum claims. Children are enduring long delays in the appointment of legal guardians to safeguard the child’s best interests and wait months before meeting with a social worker or healthcare provider. In some cases, the specific needs of girls are not sufficiently identified or addressed. Unaccompanied children also face lengthy waits in processing their asylum applications. More than 35,000 unaccompanied children sought asylum in Sweden in 2015, a dramatic increase over the approximately 7,000 in 2014. Sweden guarantees asylum-seeking children equal access to health care and education, and accommodates most unaccompanied children in dedicated group homes. Sweden has done a lot to help these children but they need to do more. What do you think could be done to help them be able to help all of the unaccompanied children out faster and better?

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