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Appeasing Aristotle: Analyzin the EU Reception Directive's Failure to Uphold the Right to Health for Asylum Seekers in Europe

Breslin, Julia (2008)
Department of Law
Abstract
The European Union is working towards creating a Common European Asylum System for the purpose of harmonizing the domestic asylum laws of its Member States and creating a system in which asylum status may be determined justly. The Reception Directive of 2003 is the EU legislation that, among other things sets minimum standards of health care for asylum seekers in EU Member States. All EU Member States are also State Parties to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and as such they may not derogate from the minimum core obligations of the right to health under article 12 of the covenant. The Member States also have an overriding obligation to progressively fulfil the right to health for all persons within their... (More)
The European Union is working towards creating a Common European Asylum System for the purpose of harmonizing the domestic asylum laws of its Member States and creating a system in which asylum status may be determined justly. The Reception Directive of 2003 is the EU legislation that, among other things sets minimum standards of health care for asylum seekers in EU Member States. All EU Member States are also State Parties to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and as such they may not derogate from the minimum core obligations of the right to health under article 12 of the covenant. The Member States also have an overriding obligation to progressively fulfil the right to health for all persons within their jurisdictions to the maximum of available resources. However, there are three provisions of the Reception Directive that permit Member States to fall below these international obligations: article 9, which makes initial medical screenings of incoming asylum seekers discretionary&semic article 15, which requires only emergency care as the minimum standard of care for asylum seekers&semic and article 16, which permits withdrawal of benefits in certain specified situations. These provisions ignore the unique health needs of asylum seekers, in particular those of women and children. Currently there are few methods of enforcing human rights, in particular economic and social rights, and the international community relies upon the good faith efforts of states and encouragement from regional human rights bodies to fulfil this role. As it stands, the Reception Directive is encouraging impunity for violations of international human rights at the domestic level by legalizing the offending asylum policies of Member States at an international level. To avoid this, the European Union should make efforts to align the minimum standards of the Reception Directive with the international obligations of its Member States. (Less)
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author
Breslin, Julia
supervisor
organization
year
type
H1 - Master's Degree (One Year)
subject
keywords
International Human Rights Law
language
English
id
1555270
date added to LUP
2010-03-08 15:23:10
date last changed
2010-03-08 15:23:10
@misc{1555270,
  abstract     = {The European Union is working towards creating a Common European Asylum System for the purpose of harmonizing the domestic asylum laws of its Member States and creating a system in which asylum status may be determined justly. The Reception Directive of 2003 is the EU legislation that, among other things sets minimum standards of health care for asylum seekers in EU Member States. All EU Member States are also State Parties to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and as such they may not derogate from the minimum core obligations of the right to health under article 12 of the covenant. The Member States also have an overriding obligation to progressively fulfil the right to health for all persons within their jurisdictions to the maximum of available resources. However, there are three provisions of the Reception Directive that permit Member States to fall below these international obligations: article 9, which makes initial medical screenings of incoming asylum seekers discretionary&semic article 15, which requires only emergency care as the minimum standard of care for asylum seekers&semic and article 16, which permits withdrawal of benefits in certain specified situations. These provisions ignore the unique health needs of asylum seekers, in particular those of women and children. Currently there are few methods of enforcing human rights, in particular economic and social rights, and the international community relies upon the good faith efforts of states and encouragement from regional human rights bodies to fulfil this role. As it stands, the Reception Directive is encouraging impunity for violations of international human rights at the domestic level by legalizing the offending asylum policies of Member States at an international level. To avoid this, the European Union should make efforts to align the minimum standards of the Reception Directive with the international obligations of its Member States.},
  author       = {Breslin, Julia},
  keyword      = {International Human Rights Law},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Appeasing Aristotle: Analyzin the EU Reception Directive's Failure to Uphold the Right to Health for Asylum Seekers in Europe},
  year         = {2008},
}