Provision of information on the procedure

Sweden

Country Report: Provision of information on the procedure Last updated: 30/11/20

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Swedish Refugee Law Center Visit Website

The official language of Sweden is Swedish and all official decisions and judgments are written in Swedish. The 1994 Ordinance on the Reception of Asylum Seekers states that the Migration Agency must inform the applicants of UNHCR and NGOs that provide services to asylum seekers.[1] There is also information in around 25 languages available through the Migration Agency on various aspects of the asylum procedure. This information is available on the website,[2] and occasionally in printed form or in booklets at reception centres. Special efforts have been made to take into account the needs of information of illiterate persons by frequently using audio-visual methods. Furthermore, there are videos providing information in sign languages. Also, the website enables persons to have the text read out to them in Swedish or English. There are plans to make this service available even in other languages, notably Somali.

The Agency has also produced material for children both unaccompanied and in families, explaining to them the asylum procedure in seven different languages.[3] Reception centres for asylum seekers also have leaflets available in a number of languages on the various aspects of the procedure, as well as on conditions of reception. Videos explaining various procedures has been produced by the Migration Agency in cooperation with NGOs. These videos are available in 7 to 12 languages including sign language and are accessible from the Migration Agency’s website.[4] There is also written information in up to 25 languages corresponding to languages understood by  the main nationalities of asylum seekers arriving in Sweden in recent years (Syria, Somalia, Eritrea, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, Albania, Serbia, Ukraine, Egypt, Pakistan, Mongolia, Russia, Georgia, Ukraine, Nigeria, Turkey, Ethiopia, Morocco, Azerbaijan and Iran).[5]

The Migration Agency has also produced leaflets in the above languages containing specific information on the Dublin III Regulation, namely on the Dublin criteria determining the Member State responsible,[6] as well as on Dublin procedures followed after a country other than Sweden has been deemed responsible.[7] There is also a specific leaflet for unaccompanied minors regarding the Dublin Regulation, as per Article 4(3) of the Dublin III Regulation.

Furthermore, at every stage of the asylum procedure, caseworkers have a duty to explain in their meetings with applicants the next stage of the procedure to each applicant. After a refusal at the first instance, each applicant is summoned to a meeting at the nearest office of the Migration Agency’s currently 39 reception offices to discuss their situation and to be provided with information on the possible future outcomes of their case.

Information is also provided by NGOs, notably in this field by the Swedish Network of Refugee Support groups (FARR), which publishes on its website an 88-page booklet entitled Goda Råd (Good Advice), updated in January 2018.[8] This information on the entirety of the procedure focuses on what asylum seekers can do themselves to contribute to a fair process and contains links to other NGOs in Sweden. This information is available and can be downloaded in English, Swedish, Arabic, Russian, Spanish and Persian. The Swedish Refugee Advice Centre and the Swedish Office of Amnesty International also provide online information in a number of languages which is of relevance to asylum seekers. The Church of Sweden has online information about asylum and migration issues on its website under the heading Support Migration, currently only in Swedish.

Information is also available at the detention centres to which UNHCR and NGOs have access. All detention centres have computers available with internet access for all detainees. Legal counsels also have an obligation to provide information on the asylum procedures to the client. A number of NGOs visit detention centres on a regular basis and are involved in a dialogue with the Migration Agency regarding the scope and routines for offering this service.

Despite all these efforts more needs to be done by all actors to make relevant information available in reality at the appropriate time for all asylum seekers taking into account their specific needs.

 


[1] Section 2a Ordinance on the reception of asylum seekers.

[2] Migration Agency, Protection and Asylum in Sweden, available at: http://bit.ly/1sHzLfA.

[3] Migration Agency, For Children, available at: http://bit.ly/1Feg3vm.

[4]  Migration Agency, Alla filmer på alla språk, available at: https://bit.ly/2W4Axay.

[5] Migration Agency, Other languages, available at: https://bit.ly/2vkhMnH.

[6] Migration Agency, “I have asked for asylum in the EU – which country will handle my claim?”, available at: http://bit.ly/1PSuhgz.

[7] Migration Agency, “I am in the Dublin procedure – what does this mean?”, available at: http://bit.ly/1LRjmgH.

[8] FARR, Good Advice for Asylum Seekers in Sweden, January 2018, available at: http://bit.ly/2nWWrwK.

 

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX – I Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation