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A critical analysis of the creation of separated care structures for unaccompanied refugee minors

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

Unaccompanied refugee minors have been widely recognized as a group of "vulnerable" children and adolescents, in need of special care and reception structures. Equally, in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, their specific needs and related rights are stipulated, urging receiving states to ensure unaccompanied children's needs on adequate care services. Yet, the 'specific care and reception structures' that many Western states have created for this growing group of unaccompanied minors are often largely separated from mainstream services within children and youth care, and characterized by other - less - quality norms, in terms of staff ratio, infrastructure, support team, etc. Moreover, more intensive support systems are more and more restricted to "vulnerable" unaccompanied minors, whereby "vulnerability" is related to certain body-related characteristics such as age and gender. Based on an analysis of the evolutions in the way the care structures for unaccompanied minors were set up in Belgium, we critically reflect on the underlying rationales that justify the particularities of these structures, hereby also reflecting about the implications of these rationales for professionals and researchers.
Tijdschrift: CHILDREN AND YOUTH SERVICES REVIEW
ISSN: 0190-7409
Volume: 92
Pagina's: 22 - 29
Jaar van publicatie:2018