As any regular reader of this blog knows, non-Schengen compliant border controls (and my documentation of them) have been a regular topic in the last few months. I’ve been checked at St Jean de la Maurienne, Buchs, Puttgarden, Oldenburg and Padborg recently, and further in the past at Brenner and Venlo and Paris. With the help of my blog readers I have started to work out what documentation I need to show at borders, and how this varies between different Member States.
All of this work has now culminated in the launch of a new website – FreeMovement.net – that went online yesterday, and has been covered in this week’s New Europe newspaper in Brussels. The basic idea is that if you cross a border and are subjected to a check then you report it. This can be done on the website, or through an iPhone and an Android app. The site is an application of the open source Ushahidi tool.
The idea is that reports from citizens should help work out the patterns of border checks, and that this data could then help push the European Commission to conduct proper investigations about breaches of Schengen. At the moment it seems that some borders – notably in and out of France (especially to Italy), and Denmark-Germany, are hot spots. But as the site develops that pattern may change.
Anyway, if you are a regular border-crosser then do have a look at the site and report breaches as and when you encounter them!