Conference “Challenges of the Common European Asylum System”

Time: March 20, 2014
Venue: Nordic Hotel Forum, Viru väljak 3, Tallinn, Estonia
Language: Estonian and English (synchronic translation)
Participation: free, but registration is required (by March 13) or watch live.

The European Union has made considerable progress in finalizing the Common European Asylum System in the past few years, in order to guarantee high quality reception systems of asylum seekers in its member states. Now it is time to turn the legislation into reality and to ask where is the Common European Asylum System heading.

Estonian Human Rights Centre and Estonian Refugee Council are holding a high-level conference titled “Challenges of the Common European Asylum System” that calls participants to think about the future of the asylum system in Estonia and the European Union as a whole. The conference takes place in Nordic Hotel Forum, Tallinn, on March 20, 2014.

Participants of the conference include European Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmström, Director of the UNHCR Bureau for Europe Vincent Cochetel, and Secretary General of the European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE) Michael Diedring.

Registration form.

 

Programme

9:30-10:00 Registration and morning coffee

10:00-10:05 Welcome address, Kristina Kallas, Estonian Refugee Council

10:05-10:10 Welcome address, Kari Käsper, Estonian Human Rights Centre

10:10-12:00 The Future of the Common European Asylum System
What awaits the Common European Asylum System in the coming years? What are the biggest challenges? How to create a uniformly high-quality asylum system across Europe?
Panelists:
Cecilia Malmström, European Commissioner for Home Affairs
Michael Diedring, Secretary General of the European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE)
Vincent Cochetel, Director of the UNHCR Bureau for Europe
Urmas Paet, Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs
Moderator: Kari Käsper, Estonian Human Rights Centre

12:00-12:15 Coffee break

12:15-13:45 Asylum Seekers’ Access to the Labour Market
When and how to provide access to the labour market for asylum seekers? What are the best practices in this question?
Panelists:
Triin Raag, Estonian Ministry of Social Affairs
George Joseph, Swedish Caritas
Eero Janson, Estonian Refugee Council
Moderator: Ingi Mihkelsoo, Estonian Refugee Council

13:45-14:45 Lunch

14:45-16:15 Detention of Asylum Seekers and its Alternatives
In what circumstances is the detention of asylum seekers justifiable? What are the working alternatives to detention and how to implement them?
Panelists:
Villem Lapimaa, Tallinn Administrative Court
Liis Valk, Estonian Police and Border Guard Board
Ben Lewis, International Detention Coalition
André Møkkelgjerd, Norwegian Organization for Asylum Seekers
Moderator: Anni Säär, Estonian Human Rights Centre

16:15-17:25 The Future of the Estonian Asylum System
What awaits the Estonian asylum system? In what positions are the Estonian parliament parties in asylum questions?
Panelists:
Rait Maruste, Estonian Reform Party
Jevgeni Ossinovski, Social Democratic Party
Marko Pomerants, Pro Patria and Res Publica Union
Olga Sõtnik, Estonian Centre Party
Moderator: Urve Eslas

17:25-17:30 Conclusion, Kristina Kallas, Estonian Refugee Council

 

Additional information:

Johannes Merilai
johannes.merilai@humanrights.ee
+372 644 5148

The conference is a part of the joint project of the Estonian Refugee Council and the Estonian Human Rights Centre, funded from the NGO Fund of EEA Grants which is operated by the Open Estonia Foundation.