To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many of her Department's full-time equivalent officials are seconded to (a) France, (b) Italy, (c) Greece and (d) any other EU country in order to identify and support Dublin III asylum transfer requests; and what plans her Department has to second further staff to identify and support such requests.
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to her Department's Written Statement of 21 April 2016, HCWS687, on refugees and resettlement, what (a) additional steps she has taken and (b) further steps she plans to take to implement and streamline the Dublin III Regulation process and to quickly identify children who qualify for family reunion across Europe.
We continue to work with a number of EU Member States and the European Asylum Sup-port Office (EASO) to ensure Dublin works effectively. We are in ongoing discussions with France, Italy and Greece, as well as the UNHCR, to ensure that we continue to have the right processes in place and the resources to make them work effectively.
We have recently deployed two UK experts to the Greek Dublin Unit. We are currently providing bilateral support to the Italian Dublin Unit through a long term secondment. We are also due to deploy an additional UK expert to the Italian Dublin Unit shortly.
Our work with France including the permanent official contact group and a recently sec-onded senior UK official to the French Dublin Unit to assist with the identification and transfer of cases has shown results of our collaborative efforts.
The Home Office has a unit processing Dublin III asylum transfer requests from and to the United Kingdom. This unit comprises 78.34 full time equivalent managers, caseworkers and support staff. Staffing levels will remain in line with anticipated volumes.
As announced on 4 May we are now looking to transfer children who were already present in Europe before the EU-Turkey deal came into force on 20 March, where it is in their best interests. It is important that we ensure we fulfil our obligations to children who are already in UK, as well ensuring we have the right support for those who may be brought to the UK from Europe. We are working with the relevant Member States, the UNHCR and other Non-Governmental Organisations and local authorities to establish the best way to implement the provisions of the Immigration Act 2016 for the transfer of unaccompanied refugee children from Europe to the UK.