Navigating Irregularity: The impact of growing up undocumented in Europe


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Undocumented children are part of our communities and share the hopes and dreams of any other children. Yet, due to their irregular residence status, their lives and the lives of their families are characterized by uncertainty and instability across many different areas. This paper focusses on six areas impacted by their irregular residence status: housing, access to services, income and socio-economic status, residence procedures ad immigration enforcement (including detention), school life, and family life. These are the areas in which children are either most invisible, or the areas central to children’s lives. There is no reliable estimate of the number of undocumented children in Europe, although nationallevel estimates exist and some EU-wide data on subsets exist. While there are many undocumented
children who are “unaccompanied”, most live with their parent(s). Many were born or have lived in Europe for several years: 68 percent of undocumented children whose parents were surveyed in Ireland, were born there, for instance.

Author(s):Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants
Publisher:Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants
Publication Date:15 Apr 2021
Geographic Focus:Europe
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