Migration and the EU: A Failure to Protect

April 2016

The European Union (EU) is currently experiencing a mass influx of migrants like never before, constituting the largest movement Europe has experienced since 1945. Most of these migrants are seeking refuge from the Syrian civil war, which has displaced over 8 million people over the past four years. This mass influx has put tremendous pressure on the EU’s ability to accept refugees and asylum seekers. This paper examines this failure of the EU, first explaining the history of the EU project and its previous migration policies. Country case studies are also presented to give examples of country dynamics during this crisis. The paper also discusses how the EU can better prepare itself for future such challenges – namely, by creating a coordinated, long-term plan that is adopted by all member states and supported by the various Directorates-General of the EU. Proposed solutions include a joint committee that brings together all relevant Directorates-General and a five-point plan that works as a guide for the most important issues this committee should tackle. This issue cannot be solved by one country alone or even by a small group. It is a global crisis that must be addressed before it spreads even further.