“We are on a ridge line between the protection” of children and the protection “of residents”, explains deputy Jean-François Eliaou

A parliamentary fact-finding mission released its report on unaccompanied minors on Wednesday (March 10th). This document formulates 18 recommendations in order to improve the care of these young migrants who arrive alone on French territory, and in order to respond to the problems of delinquency posed by a minority of them.

“We are on a somewhat complicated ridge line between protection and the fact that we must protect them from the street, but also protect residents”, explained on franceinfo Jean-François Eliaou, LREM deputy for Hérault, co-rapporteur of the fact-finding mission on the security issues associated with the presence on the territory of unaccompanied minors.

Among those interviewed, Jean-François Eliaou observed “a desire to get these kids out of the street and an impotence in the face of the particularity of this minority of unaccompanied minors who refuse to lend a helping hand and for whom the measures which are currently proposed for the protection of minors do not work “.

Faced with the delinquency of these minors, the mission noted “holes in the racket”. The deputy points to the difficulty of “protect these minors, a legal obligation” of France, and at the same time the need to propose “supportive social solutions, and sometimes also penal solutions”. Because these children “commit increasingly violent criminal acts”, with some “public disturbances”.

This delinquency of unaccompanied minors “may be linked to several factors”, underlines Jean-François Eliaou. “These children are shattered by their migratory journey. You do not leave home when you are 13 or 14 years old. Then there is Spain or Italy (…) and when they arrive here, it is is the street. And there is nothing constructive about the street. “

These adolescents find it difficult to accept help from associations or State services because there is “total distrust of adults”, underlines the rapporteur. “The difficulty of hanging up your children” for associative or institutional adults, it is “the defiance” from minors. The mission therefore recommends “a continuum of protection that begins in the street with multidisciplinary marauding”, bringing together associations, social workers, doctors, justice.

Jean-François Eliaou adds that also arises “the problem of the evaluation of the minority” of these isolated people. In “50 to 90%” cases, “these are adults who pretend to be minors”. The deputy thus specifies that “this support will be effective and appropriate if there are only minors”.

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