Brussel, 9 March 2022

On 4 March 2022, in the spirit of solidarity with the people of Ukraine, the Council of the European Union unanimously activated the Temporary Protection Directive (TPD) – for the first time since it was adopted in 2001. This landmark decision has allowed millions of refugees from Ukraine immediate and collective access to protection, rights and essential services in the EU Member States. Nearly 4.9 million people, mostly women and children, have benefited from temporary protection or similar national schemes across Europe.

We, organizations providing assistance inside Ukraine, to refugees who have fled the country, and to host communities, welcome the activation of the TPD and all practical steps undertaken by the governments, along with civil society and citizens, to welcome and support refugees from Ukraine. Among others, this includes adapting and scaling up Member States’ reception capacities, providing public and privately-hosted accommodation, and introducing targeted financial assistance. Yet, ensuring all refugees from Ukraine enjoy the rights provided by the TPD has not been without challenges. We call on the EU and Member States to redouble efforts to ensure its effective, uniform and inclusive implementation by addressing the following issues:

  1. Address barriers to enjoyment of status and rights
  2. Protect children and ensure they are in school
  3. Protect non-Ukrainians, stateless people and Roma fleeing Ukraine
  4. Prevent backsliding of support
  5. Invest in refugee inclusion and longer-term solutions from the start
  6. Promote equal treatment of refugees

Read the full joint statement signed by organisations including Eurodiaconia,International Rescue Committee, Oxfam, Save the Children and Caritas Europa. and our members Iglesia Evangélica Española and Svenska Kyrkan.