Belgium suspends shelter for single male asylum seekers

ER Editor: This story was also picked up by the Brussels Signal. See —

Belgium to no longer offer shelter to single male migrants as arrivals overwhelm system

Of note:

The Belgian State Secretary for Asylum and Migration Nicole De Moor has decided that single male asylum seekers will no longer receive shelter in her country.

She called the decision a “necessary measure” as the Belgian system can no longer process the huge inflow of asylum seekers. De Moor wants the focus to be on families with children.

Fedasil – the agency responsible for managing asylum reception in Belgium – has received the directive to no longer grant single men access to its services.

“It is not a decision I wanted to take, but I don’t want to be behind the curve. That is why I am already taking the decision to reserve all available spots for families with children. I absolutely want to avoid children ending up on the streets,” De Moor stressed.

Belgium has been harbouring an increasing number of asylum seekers; on August 28, 260 people demanded shelter and 155 of them were families with children younger than 18.

The steady inflow means the country soon will reach its capacity limits, experts say.

De Moor compared Belgium, which has received 19,000 asylum seekers so far this year, with Portugal, which has taken in 1,500, despite both countries having more or less the same number of citizens.



Belgium suspends shelter for single male asylum seekers

Nicole de Moor said Belgium expects "a growing influx of families and children" seeking shelter
Nicole de Moor said Belgium expects “a growing influx of families and children” seeking shelter
Belgium faces an acute asylum crisis as the number of people arriving in the country has rapidly risen from last year, putting pressure on an already creaking system.
Announcing the temporary suspension, Secretary of State for Asylum and Migration Nicole de Moor said Belgium expected “a growing influx of families and children” seeking shelter.
“In recent days, the number of families with children seeking asylum has increased sharply,” said Ms de Moor, a Flemish Christian Democrat. “I want to completely avoid children ending up on the streets in winter,” she added.
She did not say how long the suspension by the Fedasil network – the federal agency in charge of asylum seekers – would last.
Ms De Moor also pointed to what Belgium believes to be the unequal burden-sharing of migrants in the European Union.”Our country has been doing more than its fair share for a long time. This cannot go on any longer, because this year, 19,000 asylum seekers registered in Belgium, compared with 1,500 in Portugal, a country that has a similar population to Belgium,” she said.
Ms De Moor also pointed to Sweden as another country that registered “very few asylum applications” and said the migratory pressure on Europe had risen overall this year.




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