Are you today in great demand by Ukrainian refugees?
Not yet, but we have a meeting with the association Ukraine Amitié, this Tuesday, March 8, precisely to try to coordinate us. We also have one with the prefect and the President of the Bar Association to prepare ourselves for it and ensure that the lawyers immediately have the reflex not to send these people to the counter of the prefecture.
Is there a specific procedure for welcoming these families?
We are awaiting details on the simplified procedure activated for the latter. Indeed, and for the first time in its history, the temporary protection defined by European directive 2001-55, in 2001, was activated for all Ukrainians who request it. Created at the time on the ashes of the war in Yugoslavia, it has so far not been applied but never has Europe had to face such an influx of refugees in such a short time since the Second World War. world.
What does this temporary protection consist of?
This system, adopted unanimously by the 27 member countries on March 3, grants a special status to people fleeing war and differs from the classic right of asylum. It grants a six-month residence permit, renewable for the time being once, to Ukrainian nationals who fled the war, or who resided there before February 24, and to their family members.
This status allows you to work in France, everything depends on the legislation of the States, and entitles you to financial assistance of 6.80 euros per day and per person, increased in the presence of children. On the other hand, this status, unlike that of asylum seeker, does not entitle you to accommodation. This is likely to be the problem. It therefore does not exempt you from having to file an asylum application at the same time. In fact, everything depends on the personal and family configuration, on the possibility or not of benefiting from solidarity accommodation, etc. The children have the right to immediate schooling, but on access to the health system, the practical details remain to be specified.
What advice would you give to a newcomer?
To have recourse to a lawyer to assess each person’s situation, according to their history, OFPRA’s future case law and to assess the most relevant status applications to be filed. We are still waiting for the circular from the ministry to specify these procedures, but we will quickly be fixed.