Miriam Cuevas

Territorial differences in the implementation of the extraordinary reception: A mapping of critical cases

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The Italian system for receiving asylum seekers and refugees has undergone significant structural changes in recent years. The ordinary protection network (SPRAR), which provided for public sector coordination managed by local authorities, was enhanced by the creation of «Extraordinary Reception Centres» (CAS). These reception centres were set up by a variety of actors, (not for profit organizations, private entrepreneurs, etc.), and received funding from the award of public tender contracts by Prefectures. This paper provides an analysis of the «Extraordinary Reception Centres» which have rapidly become the central core of the system welcoming the vast majority of asylum seekers. Through research based on journalistic sources, a high number of critical issues were found to be present in these new structures. Thanks to the availability of data provided by a ministerial report, the extent of critical cases may be measured with reference to the number of asylum seekers and the availability of resources. Deep territorial differences emerged in the capacity of these entities to address the needs of asylum seekers and their effective use of public funding.


  • Italian reception system
  • social welfare benefits
  • allocation of public resources
  • quality of care
  • territorial differences


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