Asylum seekers are informed of their rights and obligations pursuant to Article 17(1)(f) of the Asylum Act. IGI-DAI shall provide written information to asylum seekers in a language they understand or are reasonably supposed to understand, within a maximum of 15 days from the submission of the asylum application. The information shall be provided by the official responsible for receiving the asylum application, according to a template established by order of the General Director of IGI. Where necessary to ensure an adequate understanding of the information by the applicant, it may also be presented orally during the preliminary interview. Competent officers are also required to inform asylum seekers on how to contact NGOs and UNHCR and how to obtain legal assistance and representation. The General Director of IGI appoints the official responsible for ensuring the conditions to carry out the above activities.
The house rules of the reception centres prescribe that, when accommodated in reception centres, asylum seekers also receive information on the rights, obligations, prohibitions and disciplinary sanctions applicable during their stay in the centre. In this regard information is handed to asylum seekers in the form of an information sheet in a language that he or she understands or is reasonably supposed to understand and in which he or she can clearly communicate. Where appropriate, for an adequate understanding of the applicant, information may also be provided orally using the services of an interpreter apt to ensure appropriate communication.The applicant has to sign an acknowledgment of receipt of the information leaflets.
According to the JRS representative, the information prescribed by the law is in practice more a presentation of the rights and obligations. The asylum seekers do not receive detailed information about their rights and obligations. It was noted that only in very few interview transcripts the asylum seeker declared that he or she is not aware of the rights and obligations.
In practice, asylum seekers are expected to contact the NGOs in the Regional Centres in order to get more detailed information on reception conditions, house rules and their rights and obligations.
Bucharest: The Regulation of Internal Order (ROI) is explained by the integration officer or the officer at the checkpoint of the regional centre, when needed, without an interpreter or maybe with the help of AIDRom’s cultural mediator, according to the JRS representative. The director of Stolnicu Regional Centre reported that asylum seekers are informed in writing (in English) by the officer at the checkpoint. It has been reported that leaflets regarding the ROI, rights and obligations were distributed in the past but are no longer distributed. JRS drafted leaflets with ROI, which are displayed in the Tudor Gociu centre According to the director of the Regional Centre, the information is provided at the time of accommodation in the centre by the officers at the access control point, with the help of an IOM ROMANIA Arabic interpreter who is present in the centre from 08:00 to 14:00, or by a person from the community. Written information is provided.
Giurgiu: Asylum seekers receive information about ROI upon arrival in the centre. NGOs organise information sessions with asylum seekers after their arrival at the centre and offer information during individual counselling sessions.
Galaţi: The ROI is explained in an easily comprehensible manner at the moment of accommodation in the centre, with the assistance of an interpreter, where possible, of a person from the community who speaks English or of the cultural facilitator, who speaks Arabic and Kurdish. JRS also has a cultural facilitator who speaks Somali. The information is provided every time it is requested. There is also written information in the rooms and in the hallway in English. Infographics were also displayed with ROI and information about COVID-19.
Şomcuta Mare: Asylum seekers are provided general information onthe ROI and the projects implemented by NGOs in the Regional Centre, upon transfer from Timisoara. In general, IGI-DAI, more specifically the director of the centre, provides general information to asylum seekers only upon arrival in the centre, while NGO representatives cover the details and additional information on the procedure, rights and obligations.
Timișoara: Information on the ROI is provided in writing at the registration of the asylum application. There are leaflets in several languages, according to the director of the centre. However, the JRS representative reported that she had not seen asylum seekers receiving leaflets when they arrive in the centre. ROI is explained by NGOs during information sessions, with the help of interpreters paid by AIDRom. However, information sessions were not held with all asylum seekers accommodated in the centre. During their visit of 25 June 2021, the Ombudsman noticed that information on the rights, obligations, prohibitions and disciplinary sanctions applicable during the stay in the Regional Centre were not displayed in any of the rooms.
Rădăuţi: Asylum seekers do not receive leaflets from IGI-DAI, according to the JRS representative. NGO representatives inform them orally during counselling sessions. Posters with ROI are displayed in several languages on the doors where asylum seekers are accommodated
UNHCR developed information leaflets on COVID-19 in several languages, which were distributed in all regional centres.
Information on the rights, obligations, prohibitions and disciplinary sanctions applicable during the stay in the Regional Centre shall be displayed in each accommodation room in an international language. However, according to the stakeholders interviewed by the author, this is not respected in practice, in all centres. In Şomcuta Mare information leaflets were received in December 2021 and were to be displayed in 2022.
 Article 17(1)(f) Asylum Act; Article 2(1) Asylum Decree.
 Article 2(1) Asylum Decree.
 Article 2(1^1) Asylum Decree.
 Article 2(2) Asylum Decree.
 Article 2(3) Asylum Decree.
 Article 5(1) and (2) ROI.
 Ombudsman, Visit Report, 2021, 6-7.
 Article 5(3) ROI.