4.7.1.1 Changing institutional environments

Several pieces of legislation on new administrative bodies related to reception were adopted in 2019, with implementation beginning in 2020. For example, the new Austrian Federal Agency for Reception and Support Services (BBU, Bundesagentur für Betreuungs- und Unterstützungsleistungen GmbH) started its activities related to the provision of material reception conditions on 1 December 2020, while legal advice and representation, translation and interpretation services, advice and counselling on return and human rights monitoring were implemented as of 1 January 2021. Since the agency is a non-profit subsidiary company of the Federal Republic, civil society organisations expressed their concern about the independence and impartiality of the new organisation (especially regarding legal advice) already in 2019 at the time of the adoption of the new law,520 and then throughout 2020, as the agency was about to become operational521 (see Section 4.10). In Luxembourg, the National Reception Office (ONA, Office nationale de l'accueil) started its operations on 1 January 2020, taking over tasks from the National Reception and Integration Office (OLAI, Office national de l’accueil et de l’intégration).522 

Some reception-related tasks in Ireland were transferred from the Minister for Justice and Equality to the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, including the provision, withdrawal or reduction of material reception conditions, information provision, the designation of accommodation centres and the assessment of special reception needs for asylum applicants.523

The Office for Foreigners’ Department of Social Assistance, the authority responsible for reception in Poland, was restructured to now have four units instead of five. One unit now manages all reception centres.

 

 

[520] European Asylum Support Office. (June 2020). EASO Asylum Report 2020: The Situation of Asylum in the European Union. https://easo.europa.eu/asylum-report-2020
[521] European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights. (2020). Migration: Key fundamental rights concerns - Quarterly Bulletin 4 - 2020. https://fra.europa.eu/sites/default/files/fra_uploads/fra-2020-migration-bulletin-4_en.pdf
[522] European Asylum Support Office. (June 2020). EASO Asylum Report 2020: The Situation of Asylum in the European Union. https://easo.europa.eu/asylum-report-2020
[523] Disability, Equality, Human Rights, Integration and Reception (Transfer of Departmental Administration and Ministerial Functions) Order 2020, October 16, 2020. http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/eli/2020/si/436/made/en/print

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