Gov’t looks to provide better security for foreigners

Almost all parties in the Polish parliament have supported the idea of introducing so-called supplementary protection to Polish law. This protection would apply to foreigners in Poland whose return to their home countries could be dangerous.

According to the proposed regulation, a foreigner who doesn’t meet all conditions for refugee status could get supplementary protection if his return to his homeland would expose him to: being sentenced to death or execution, to torture, to inhuman treatment or to serious risk to life or health.

All applications for refugee status would also be considered as applications for supplementary protection. Vice Minister of Interior and Administration Piotr Stachanczyk said supplementary protection at present would apply mostly to citizens of Chechnya.

The proposal would regulate how foreigners staying at refugee camps or other locations receive correspondence. It states that all letters will be delivered to the housemaster, who then gives them to the addressee. When it is impossible to do it that way, the correspondence would remain with the housemaster for up to three days before being returned to the sender.

The chief of the Foreigners’ Office also could request that a foreigner be jailed for up to 60 days if his behavior endangered the life and health of others.

Pawel Olszewski (Civic Platform party) said the goal of the proposal is to comply with two EU directives of 2004 and 2005 to create a compact for protecting foreigners on EU territory.
Artur Gorski (Law and Justice) said the deadline for satisfying those directives in Poland had already passed and foreigners are still waiting for the protection
Wieslaw Woda, deputy of PSL, pointed out that the proposed regulation doesn’t include legal assistance, which can be very important. That issue may be resolved later.

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