(In)security in ‘hotspots’: the problem of sexual violence

In 2015, the European Commission launched the “hotspot approach” to deal with exceptional migratory flows. The “hotspot approach” aimed to help the Member States, such as Italy and Greece, identify, register, and fingerprint migrants and determine their protection needs.
However, these hotspots, also known as Reception and Identification Centres, ended up becoming real detention centres with inhuman conditions. These RICs are also described as unsafe places, especially for women and girls, and several episodes of violence have been reported namely sexual violence. Going to the toilet became a challenge for many women and girls, as it made them easy targets for sexual assault.
In 2020, the European Commission presented the “New Pact on Migration and Asylum”, leading us to reflect, in our communication, whether the proposals put forward will provide an adequate response to the problem of violent crimes committed in RIC, notably sexual violence.