Over the summer I had the opportunity to examine the stays of temporarily admitted persons in Switzerland. Using individual register data (133 thousand individuals, 20 years), we provided rich descriptions of this particular population and examined how their stay develops over time. The report (in German) is now available from the Federal Commission on Migration FCM.
Temporarily admitted persons are rejected asylum seekers and other foreigners without a permit who cannot be deported. It is used to complement the Geneva Convention to provide protection to individuals in need, like in the case of civil war, ongoing situations of violence, because of non-refoulement, or for medical reasons. Conceived as a temporary solution, the individuals affected are still ordered to leave the country, and it does not constitute a legal permit.
Despite its name, many temporarily admitted persons remain in this precarious situation for many years. Indeed, the proportion of temporarily admitted persons who have stayed in Switzerland for a long period of time has been steadily increasing. This is a reflection of the fact that only a small minority of the temporarily admitted persons returns to the country of origin; 61 per cent sooner or later are accepted as a case of hardship and receive a residence permit. Despite this, a typical temporarily admitted person remains without such a status for around three years, although there are stark differences by country of origin.