This has been announced by the by Theo Francken, Secretary of State for Asylum and Migration, in his General Policy Note of 19 October 2017, according to the national campaign “You don’t lock up a child. Period.” As of January 2018, innocent children will be put behind bars for the sole reason of their or their parents’ migratory status. Despite the fact that Belgium has previously stopped this practise in 2008, resuming detention of children for immigration reasons affects their health, development and well-being and is a retrograde step for children and young people in Belgium.
The Opening Doors for Europe’s Children progress report reflects on campaign’s achievements towards making a positive difference for hundreds of thousands of children across Europe during Phase I. With larger partnership and extended geography, it describes campaign’s transition into the second phase which is expected to run until the end of 2018.