In 2015, Germany received the largest number of refugees in the EU, with nearly half a million asylum applications and it is estimated that over a million people entered Germany that year. German authorities have struggled to respond to the scale of the influx and the biggest problems for torture victims have been healthcare and reception facilities.
Due to the large numbers of people arriving, German authorities have struggled to set up adequate reception facilities for refugees arriving in Germany. Refugees have been placed in emergency shelters for months on end, where they have little access to information and social services. This places a particular strain on torture survivors, who may suffer from torture trauma.
Alongside the poor quality of reception facilities, German law restricts asylum seekers’ access to healthcare. This means that asylum seekers only have access to emergency care or care that is deemed essential, meaning that the vast majority of asylum seekers sometimes go months without medical care. As a result, torture victims seeking asylum in Germany do not get the care they need and are entitled to.