Law in France allows for the detention of children with their families. The law also allows for the detention of unaccompanied migrant children on arrival. Commendably, unaccompanied children cannot be detained in France before deportation.
In practice, more than 4,000 children were detained on French Territory in 2016 including unaccompanied children being detained with unrelated adults. The majority of these children are detained in the overseas Department of France, Mayotte. There has also been a significant increase in the numbers of children detained in France continental – 305 cases were recorded in 2017 compared to 40 children detained in 2013.