Reception conditions for asylum seekers in Spain include the coverage of personal expenses for basic necessities and items for personal use, transportation, clothing for adults and children, educational activities, training in social and cultural skills, learning of hosting country language, vocational training and long life training, leisure and free time, child care and other complementary educational type, as well as aid to facilitate the autonomy of the beneficiaries and others of extraordinary nature.
The Reception Handbook elaborates the different forms of reception conditions offered in each phase of the reception system:
- Assessment and referral phase: Applicants receive: (a) basic information on the reception system; (b) basic and immediate assistance i.e. hygiene kits, baby food, health check and care; (c) physical transport or financial assistance to ensure transport to lodge the asylum application or to a reception place; (d) temporary accommodation until a place is available in the reception system.
- First phase: Applicants receive, inter alia: (a) reception and support; (b) hygienic products (including for children); (c) a medical certificate for detecting and treating, if necessary, sexually transmitted diseases; (d) social assistance, which includes, i.e., information on public and private services, basic legal information, medical cards, city registration, renewal of documentation, schooling, (d) cultural orientation, (e) cultural and leisure activities, (f) assessment of specific needs, etc.
- Second phase: Applicants receive, inter alia: (a) identification services as well as an assessment and follow-up of possible vulnerabilities or specific reception needs; (b) social assistance, which includes, i.e., information on public and private services and basic legal information, (c) information and accompaniment for the purpose of securing housing; (d) information on the social context in Spain, the Spanish administration and authorities, basic legislation, training in practical skills, rights and obligations of citizens; (e) consensual elaboration of an itinerary for the preparation to an autonomous life; etc.
Financial allowances and further details are decided on a yearly basis and published by the Minister of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration. These amounts are based on the available general budget for reception of the Directorate-General. The latest Royal Decree determining which entities are to receive direct grants (subvenciones) was published on 21 October 2021. On May 2021, the Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration launched a public consultation on the Strategic Framework for the Drafting of the National Programme for Spain within the AMIF for the period 2021-2017. Initially the Ministry collected inputs from different stakeholders, and later approved the final version of the Strategic Framework.
All asylum seekers hosted in the first phase are given the amount of €50 per month per person (to cover personal out-of-pocket expenses), plus €20 per month for each minor in charge. In addition to this pocket money they receive on a monthly basis, other necessities are also covered after presenting a receipt of the expense when it regards: public transport, clothing, health related expenses, education and training related expenses, administration proceedings related expenses, translation and interpretation fees.
During the second phase, protection holders are not provided with accommodation anymore; they live in private apartments and housing. They receive no pocket money, although expenses for the rent are covered by the asylum system. They can also receive additional financial support for covering basic needs (Atención a las necesidades básicas). The maximum amount of the latter varies according to the number of persons composing the family and further depends on whether they benefit from additional financial support for other types of expenses (ayudas puntuales) such as health, education, training, birth.
Financial assistance to asylum seekers could be considered as adequate or sufficient during the first phase, as it is aimed to cover all basic needs. However, during the second phase of reception, conditions and financial support are not meant to be adequate, as they are conceived as extra assistance for supporting refugees’ gradual integration in the host society.
Main obstacles for asylum applicants present after passing the first phase, as the system foresees an initial degree of autonomy and self-maintenance which is hardly accomplishable in 6 months’ time, and almost impossible in the case of applicants who have difficulties in learning and speaking the Spanish language, and thus face greater barriers to access to employment. The SEM instruction of January 2021 also aims at addressing these issues.
Evictions or attempts to conduct evictions of Syrian and Palestinian asylum seekers from their houses have been reported during 2020 in Zaragoza and near Madrid, due to the above-mentioned challenges they face in securing material resources to pay their rent. In October 2020, however, an eviction of a Palestinian family near Madrid was suspended by a judge, in light of the documentation and the vulnerability report submitted by the organisation SOS Racismo. No information on this issue has been found for what concerns 2021.
 DGIAH, Reception Handbook, June 2020, K.1., 24.
 Real Decreto 882/2021, de 11 de octubre, por el que se regula la concesión directa de subvenciones a determinadas entidades para la financiación del Sistema Nacional de Acogida e Integración de Personas Solicitantes y Beneficiarias de Protección Internacional y la atención sociosanitaria en los centros de estancia temporal de inmigrantes de Ceuta y Melilla, available at: https://bit.ly/3Jy0EPy.
 Ministerio de Inclusión, Securidad Social y Migraciones, ‘Marco Estratégico de Redacción del Programa Nacional de España en el Fondo de Asilo, Migración e Integración para el periodo 2021-2027’, available at: https://bit.ly/36kSFaf.