• Rebecca Marie Broholm-Little
4. semester, Global Refugee Studies, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
This study seeks to conduct an extensive policy analysis of substance abuse treatment concerning asylum seekers in Denmark structured by Carol Lee Bacchi’s approach what’s the problem represented to be? (2009). The study views the policy through textual documents, as well as everyday practice carried out by street-level bureaucrats. The empirical material is gathered through interviews with health personnel from four different asylum centers and is supplemented with interviews with social and health actors from the open drug scene on Vesterbro, Copenhagen. Apart from identifying implied rationales in the policy and policy practice, the analysis has also been concerned with exploring so-called policy silences, meaning issues unaddressed in the policy. The findings show that an underlying conceptual logic in the policy is that asylum seekers have a lesser right to health care than Danish citizens, including substance abuse treatment. A clash between this critical migration rationale and a health-oriented drug rehabilitation logic is apparent at the asylum centers, and health personnel are left to navigate in this tensional field. Different policy practices are identified among the informants at the asylum centers – some reproducing the policy’s rationales and others opposing them. The analysis furthermore illustrates that there is a large prevalence of asylum seekers on the open drug scene in Copenhagen, which is a circumstance unaddressed in the policy. It is discussed how this policy silence may fixate policy practice to the official asylum system, thus impeding action to be taken on the unofficial drug scene. Concerns are raised as to whether the policy favors the most resourceful drug dependent asylum seekers, due to a lack of integrated social and medical treatment together with red tape bureaucracy, thus neglecting the most vulnerable asylum seekers with a substance abuse.

Keywords: Policy analysis, substance abuse, asylum seekers, street-level bureaucracy
Udgivelsesdato24 maj 2018
Antal sider60
ID: 279751570