COVID-19: Measures, Guidelines and Recommendations

In the current context of extraordinary measures to respond to the epidemiological situation of the new coronavirus / COVID-19, we present here some measures, guidelines and recommendations from the competent authorities and entities, particularly those applied to the High Commission for Migration, its services and customers.

High Commission for Migration (ACM, I.P.)’s Contingency Plan for the New Coronavirus (COVID-19) (Version1.0, 06 March, 2020)

"The Contingency Plan to be observed in a situation of infection (suspected or confirmed), not only of its workers, but also of the ones of partner institutions that work on the premises of this Public Institute and the citizens (clients) who daily use these public  services.”

Directorate-General for Health (DGS)’ s Microsite / Ministry of Health (SNS): COVID-19

This microsite dedicated to COVID-19 provides answers to frequently asked questions, recommendations and a variety of relevant documentation; guides for health professionals and institutions; and updated information on the situation in Portugal and areas of the world affected by the disease.

Government of Portugal’s official page

The Government of Portugal´s official website is an elementary source of public information and connection to other entities of the Portuguese State.

New Website Covid19estamoson and app Estamos ON – Covid19

The website and the app Estamos ON – Covid19, created by the Government, gather all the relevant information on the prevention and containment measures to counter the new coronavirus, in order to support citizens, families and companies. These tools allow one to consult the exceptional measures adopted, the authorities’ recommendations, practical advices, as well as the answers to frequently asked questions, all the support provided and the necessary documentation – namely, the forms that must be filled out – among other contents. The app is available for IOS and Android.

New website for School Support

At a time when Portuguese schools have had their classroom activities suspended, the Directorate-General for Education, in collaboration with the National Agency for Qualification and Vocational Education, built the site, with a set of resources to support schools in the use of distance learning methodologies that allow them to continue the teaching and learning processes.

The Education and Presidency Governance Area, responsible for Citizenship, Equality and Integration and Migration, also invite all schools to share through this website, initiatives, strategies and solutions for children and youngsters.

Extraordinary measures

. National State of Emergency (renewed)

On March 18, 2020, the President of the Republic declared the State of Emergency, “based on the confirmation of a public calamity situation”. The State of Emergency covers the entire national territory and lasts for 15 days, starting at 12 am on March 19 of 2020, ending at 11h59 pm on April 2 of 2020, and may undergo eventual renewals, under the law.

In this sequence, the XXII Government drafted a Decree that regulates the application of the State of Emergency ordered by the President of the Republic. This Order covers the entire national territory and is effective from 12 am on March 22 of 2020, also limiting the functioning of Public Services, such as the High Commission for Migration.

Know the measures in force.

On April 2 of 2020, the Parliament approved the President of the Republic's proposal to renew the State of Emergency for another 15 days, that is, until April 17 of 2020.

In this context, the Government will soon present new exceptional measures.

. Using digital / Internet and telephone channels to access Public Services

Stay at home. Use online assistance and telephone support for remote services.

The ePortugal Portal gathers information about the vast majority of public services in Portugal (eg. services related to the Citizen Card, social security, certificates, records, finances, among many others). Use the search on this portal to find the services you want, and check if they are available online or by phone.

Access the Frequently Asked Questions and Answers about the operation of Public Services (PT version), also available in Hindi (hi), Mandarin (zh) and Russian (ru).

Conditioned Face-to-face service at CNAIM Norte, Lisbon and Algarve

Face-to-face service at CNAIM Norte, Lisboa and Algarve is conditioned. Avoid unnecessary travel. Opt for the telephone service, through the Migrant Support Line: 218 106 191, from Monday to Friday, between 9 am and 7 pm; or by email

. CNAIM Norte:
. CNAIM Lisboa:
. CNAIM Algarve:  

And by using the app MY CNAIM / Welcome Migrant.

My CNAIM app is an application that facilitates access of migrant and refugee people, as well as citizens of the European Union (EU), to various information, such as documention necessary for the regularization process, housing, health, education, recognition of academic qualifications, among other relevant data about Portugal. Available for IOS and Android operating systems, in Portuguese, English and Arabic.


. PO ISE and FAMI’ Calls – Information by email

The requests for information regarding Calls of the Operational Social Inclusion and Employment Programme (PO ISE) and the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (FAMI) should be addressed by e-mail. 


Regularization of immigrants and asylum seekers with pending applications at SEF

With Order No. 3863-B / 2020, of March 27, 2020, the Government determined that immigrants and asylum seekers with pending applications for residence permits in the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) are temporarily considered in a regular situation and have access to the same rights and supports, including health, social support, employment and housing.

Immigrants who have not yet submitted the request will be able to do so during the State of Emergency period, and while not being covered by the documentation regularization measure, maintain the right to health care.

. SEF counters closed and attendance services suspended

As of March 30, 2020, the Foreign and Borders Service’ counters are closed and face-to-face service is suspended.

SEF remains available for information through the telephone service – 808 202 653 (landline) and 808 962 690 (mobile) –, and by email:

SEF will continue to provide face-to-face assistance only for urgent requests:

.Citizens who need to travel and prove the urgent need to leave national territory, for unavoidable and urgent reasons;

.Citizens whose documents have been stolen or lost.

More information at

Acceptance of expired documents

With the Decree-Law No. 10-A / 2020, of March 13, the Government established exceptional and temporary measures regarding the epidemiological situation of the new Coronavirus – COVID 19, having decreed, among others measures, that the documents that expire  from February  24 of 2020 remain valid until June 30 of 2020. This measure applies to:

. Citizen Card
. Driver’s license
. Criminal record
. Certificates
. Permanence visas
. Documents and visas related to the permanence in national territory

. Suspension of deadline for rental contracts

The XXII Government approved an exceptional and temporary regime for counting the duration of housing and non-housing rental contracts, which defines the remain in force.

The suspension of calculating the time in rental contracts or of their renewals during the vigilance periods in a situation of need, state of emergency or other state of exception declared under legal and constitutional terms, guarantees the continuity of the contracts, as well as the rights and obligations from both parties.

. Suspension of flights to and from outside of the European Union (EU) 

All international flights from outside the EU to any airport in Portugal have been suspended since 12 am on March 19 of 2020 and for a period of 30 days. There are two exceptions: flights to non-EU countries where there is a strong presence of Portuguese communities (Canada, the United States, Venezuela and South Africa); and air connections with all Portuguese-speaking countries – concerning  Brazil, only the Lisbon-Rio de Janeiro and Lisbon-São Paulo routes are maintained.

. Temporary restitution of border control with Spain

The documental control of people on the borders with Spain was exceptionally and temporarily restitutd, between 11 pm March 16 of 2020 and 12 am hours of April 15, with the possibility of renewals.

. Educational action for children and youngsters in vulnerable situations: proposals

The Education and Presidency Governance Area, which oversees Citizenship, Equality and Integration and Migration, presented a set of action proposals, also inviting all schools to share through the site, initiatives, strategies and solutions for children and young peoples.

. Commission for Citizenship and Gender Equality (CIG): Security recommendations concerning domestic violence during isolation

Domestic violence is a public crime and reporting it is a collective responsibility.

The National Support Network for Victims of Domestic Violence is working. If you need help or are aware of any situation of domestic violence, send a message to the SMS Line 3060 or call 800 202 148. It's a free line, open 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. CIG also has an email service for questions, requests for assistance and emotional support:

Access this information and other safety recommendations.

. MAI information leaflet: rules to be followed during the state of emergency

The Ministry of Internal Administration (MAI) – through GNR, PSP and SEF – is distributing an information leaflet with the rules to be followed during the state of emergency, in order to prevent the advance of the Covid-19 pandemic.

State of Emergency | Understand to comply | #stayathome” is the title of the leaflet sent by the Ministry of Internal Administration to the Security Forces and Services to be delivered at the local level and in the air, sea and land borders of the country.

. Ministry of Foreign Affairs ´s Emergency Line COVID-19 for Portuguese people temporarily traveling abroad

“In order to provide support to the Portuguese who are temporarily traveling abroad and need  help to return to Portugal, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MNE) created the COVID-19 emergency line, a service based on the e- mail ( and on the telephone line (+351 217 929 755). This emergency line for travelers will be available on working days, between 9 am and 5 pm. Outside these hours, it will be complemented by the activity of the Consular Emergency Office (GEC), open 24 hours a day.”

International information sources

International Organization for Migration (IOM)

Information leaflet on COVID-19 which has been translated into 27 languages has been produced by the International Organization for Migration (IOM)’s Coordination Office for the Mediterranean:

Esan Ishan
Kurdish Sorani

World Health Organization (WHO)

WHO Helping children cope with stress during the 2019-nCoV outbreak
WHO Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: Healthy Parenting [Available in 30+ languages at]
UNICEF and IFRC: A guide to preventing and addressing social stigma
. UNICEF and IFRC: Risk education and community engagement
. UNICEF and IFRC: Key tips and discussion points for community workers
UNICEF Tips for parenting during the coronavirus (COVID-19)
UNICEF Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): What parents should know

Mental Health & Psychosocial Support Network (MHPSS)

. Briefing note on addressing mental health and psychosocial aspects of COVID-19

MHPSS and Communication with children and community

NASP Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus) A Parent Resource 
Inter-Agency Risk Communication and Community Engagement Group (Asia-Pacific): How to include marginalised and vulnerable people in risk communication and community engagement

Related legislation

. Normative Order No. 4 / 2020, of 25  March, Determines the creation of a financial support line, aimed at meeting the financial needs of tourist micro-enterprises whose activity is being strongly affected by the economic consequences resulting from the outbreak of the disease COVID -19

. Order No. 3659-A / 2020, of 24 March, Determines procedures for border control by SEF

. Order No. 3659-B / 2020, of 24 March, Extension of suspension of flights to and from Italy

. Decree no. 2-A / 2020, of 20 March, Regulates the application of the state of emergency decreed by the President of the Republic (Consolidated)

. Law No. 1-A / 2020, of March 19, Exceptional and temporary measures to respond to the epidemiological situation caused by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and the disease COVID-19

Decree of the President of the Republic no. 14-A / 2020, of March 18, Declares the state of emergency, based on the verification of a situation of public calamity

. Resolution of the Council of Ministers no. 10-B / 2020, of March 16, Restores, on an exceptional and temporary basis, the documental control of people at the borders in the context of the epidemiological situation caused by the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and the COVID-19 disease

. Order No. 3301-C / 2020, of March 15, Adopts extraordinary, temporary and transitory measures, in terms of services for citizens and companies, including consular services outside the national territory, in the context of combating  the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus

. Ordinance No. 71/2020, of 15 March, Restrictions on access and use of commercial establishments, restaurants or drinking spaces

. Declaration of Rectification  No. 11-A / 2020, of March 15, Rectification to Ordinance No. 71/2020, on Restrictions on access and use of commercial establishments, restaurants or drinking spaces

. Ordinance No. 71-A / 2020, of March 15, Defines and regulates the terms and conditions for the granting of immediate  support, with extraordinary, temporary and transitory nature, intended for workers and employers affected by the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus, in order  to maintain jobs and mitigate business crisis situations (Consolidated)

. Dispatch no. 3298-C / 2020, of 13 March, Determines the interdiction of disembarkation and the  licenses for shore leave of passengers and crew of cruise ships in national ports

. Decree-Law no. 10-A / 2020, of 13 March, Establishes exceptional and temporary measures regarding the epidemiological situation of the new Coronavirus – COVID 19

. Resolution of the Council of Ministers no. 10-A / 2020, of March 13, Approves a set of measures related to the epidemiological situation of the new Coronavirus COVID 19

. Order No. 2875-A / 2020, of March 3, Adopts measures to safeguard the social protection of beneficiaries who are temporarily prevented from exercising their professional activity by order of the health authority, due to the risk of infection by COVID-19

Access all legislation related to COVID-19 in electronic Diário da República.

What to do if you are a victim or have knowledge of discriminatory practices?

Any person or institution that becomes aware of any situation which might be considered administrative offense shall circulate it to one of the following:
a) Member of government that has the charge of the area of equality;
b) High Commission for Migrations (ACM);
c) Commission for Equality and Against Racial Discrimination (CICDR);
d) General-Inspection competent in the matter.
The entities referred to in the first three paragraphs, upon learning of an administrative offense, send the case to the competent General Inspection, which will conduct its statement.
You can file your complaint by one of the following:
  • Fill in the online complaint form available at;
  • Send complaint by mail, addressed to CICDR, to Rua Álvaro Coutinho, nº 14-16, 1250-025 Lisboa;
  • written complaint with the facts considered discriminatory, sent by email to:;
  • personally in any of the entities referred to above, and make a written submission which report the facts as discriminatory
  • In the complaint you should consider the following:
  • full identification (name, number of the identification, expiration date, taxpayer number, address, telephone number and email address)
  • A detailed description of all facts and circumstances that have occurred acts of discrimination, written in an objective, hard data should be indicated as the date and the location and identification of the alleged perpetrators;
  • Indication of witnesses (names, number of identity cards, addresses, contacts, phone, email);
  • You should note also the following:
  • under the law, who claim to have suffered discrimination, support it, presenting the facts of the susceptible appears to indicate;
  • It is very important to present all evidence available to it, namely, the complete identification of all stakeholders and all the details that occurred in the commission of such acts (or failure thereof) in order to compete for the success of research;
  • The evidence of attitudes that, by act or omission, are based on discriminatory grounds should not, by itself, cause him to give up the complaint.
It is recommended that in situations that have occurred in the complaints establishments or public institutions be expressed in the Complaints Book.
Analyzed the facts contained in the complaint, verified the existence of sufficient evidence, the case will be referred to the General Inspection for the matter to proceed to the investigation of alleged and respective presentation of evidence. In the end, the General Inspection issue a final report with conclusions on the evidence produced.
This report is sent to the Standing Committee of CICDR to rule on the extent of the penalty to be imposed by the High Commission for Migrations and president of the Court.

Década Internacional de Afrodescendentes (2015-2024)

A Assembleia Geral das Nações Unidas aprovou a Década Internacional de Afrodescendentes através da Resolução 68/237, para o período entre 2015-2024. 
A Década Internacional de Afrodescendentes surge da Declaração e Programa de Ação de Durban, da 3.ª Conferência Mundial Contra o Racismo, Discriminação Racial, Xenofobia e Intolerância. A Década decorre até ao final de 2024, e assenta nos seguintes domínios: reconhecimento, justiça, desenvolvimento e discriminação múltipla ou agravada das pessoas de descendência africana.
De acordo com as Nações Unidas, o objetivo principal é o de realçar a necessidade de reforçar a cooperação nacional, regional e internacional em relação ao pleno aproveitamento dos direitos económicos, sociais, culturais, civis e políticos de pessoas de descendência africana, bem como a sua participação plena e igualitária em todos os aspetos da sociedade. 
É recomendado aos Estados que desenvolvam um plano de actividades: a nível nacional, os Estados devem tomar medidas concretas e práticas por meio da adoção e efetiva implementação, nacional e internacional, de quadros jurídicos, políticas e programas de combate ao racismo, discriminação racial, xenofobia e intolerância correlata enfrentados por afrodescendentes, tendo em conta a situação particular das mulheres, meninas e jovens do sexo masculino nas seguintes atividades:
Discriminação múltipla ou agravada
Além das atividades desenvolvidas que têm vindo a contribuir para a Declaração e Programa de Ação de Durban, e em linha com a Década Internacional de Afrodescendentes, o Alto Comissariado para as Migrações, I.P., desenhou, em concordância com as recomendações internacionais, um plano de atividades nacional para dar maior visibilidade a esta temática e promover uma estrutura mais organizada e sistemática ao longo da Década.
O Plano em questão inclui a produção e disseminação de várias publicações em diferentes suportes (brochuras, panfletos, campanhas, DVD), bem como momentos de reconhecimento da presença Africana em Portugal, nomeadamente através da realização de uma exposição e de uma conferência internacional.
Aquele é um documento aberto e dinâmico, que visa incentivar a discussão e a conceção eventual de mais medidas e atividades, indo ao encontro de algumas recomendações a Portugal, expressas no âmbito do Comité das Nações Unidas para a Eliminação da Discriminação Racial.


(parceria com a Batoto Yetu Portugal)

European Citizens

Imagem em Destaque
The High Commission for Migration (ACM, I.P.), as the coordinating body of the working group to follow up the implementation of Law 27/2017 of May 30, which approves measures for uniform application and practical enforcement of the right of free movement of workers and their families, who moves to another Member State, have the purpose, inter alia, of ensuring the broadcasting of clear and accessible information on rights conferred inside the European Union (EU).

Law 27/2017 of 30 May, which has been in force since 1 June 2017, approves measures for uniform application and practical enforcement of the right of free movement of EU workers.

It aims to implement measures to facilitate the uniform exercise of workers’ rights in the context of the free movement of workers. A set of mechanisms is provided to ensure equal treatment of workers from the European Union and their families when they move to another Member-State.

To this end, the law establishes a set of national entities with authority to promote, analyze, monitor and support equal treatment of EU workers and members of their families, without discrimination on grounds of nationality, restrictions or obstacles to their free movement rights.

The specific national entities involved are:

The Institute of Employment and Vocational Training (IEFP, I.P.) that regards access to training, to employment, including assistance provided by employment services, and reintegration in the event of unemployment of EU workers;

The National Agency for Qualification and Vocational Education (ANQEP, I.P.), and the Directorate-General for Education (DGE), in access to qualification and education;

The Working Conditions Authority (ACT), in terms of employment and working conditions, including pay, dismissal, health and safety at work, membership of trade unions and eligibility for workers' representative bodies;

The Institute of Social Security (ISS, I.P.), on social benefits;

Tax and Customs Authority (AT), in tax benefits;

The Directorate-General for Employment and Labor Relations (DGERT), ANQEP, I.P., and the Directorate-General for Higher Education (DGES), in the field of access to and exercise of professions or activities;

The Commission for Equality and Against Racial Discrimination (CICDR), in the field of the refusal or restriction of the exercise of any economic, social or cultural rights by any person on grounds of their belonging to a particular race, color, nationality or ethnic origin;

The Institute of Housing and Urban Rehabilitation (IHRU, I.P.), in access to housing;

DGE, IEFP I.P., and ANQEP I.P., on access to education, apprenticeships and vocational training for children of European Union workers;

The Directorate-General for Economic Activities (DGAE), in the framework of liaison between economic activities and their operators and foreign workers and their families.

These entities, by their competence, provide the necessary information to all EU citizens, by obtaining legal advice and access to judicial sponsorship mechanisms to ensure effective judicial protection of their legally protected rights and interests, under the same terms and conditions provided for nationals.

The High Commission for Migration (ACM, I.P.) guarantees the disclosure of information regarding that Law.

Law 27/2017 of 30 May adopts measures for uniform application and practical enforcement of the right of free movement of workers, transposing Directive 2014/54/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 April 2014.

Social and Tax Benefits
Social Benefits
Tax Benefits
Training and Qualification

What are immigrant associations and what do they do?

Immigrant associations are privileged spaces for organizing cultural belonging, community and participation, in which people are not mere recipients, but actors involved in defending their rights and promoting conditions of social welfare.
As an inalienable right and a pole of dynamic civic participation and democratic learning, the association is a form of active citizenship in the pursuit of ideas and projects in support of a common cause.
The action of these immigrant associations is dynamic and proactive. Their work is developed in such diverse areas as school support for children and youth, legal support, Portuguese and other countries’ language / culture lessons, leisure activities and cultural / recreational events.
Awareness and information campaigns directed to the Portuguese society, political intervention stocks, on the issues of immigration and the fight against discrimination, and development projects in countries of origin, are also part of the agenda.
In total, spread across the country, more than a hundred, immigrant associations currently recognized by the ACM, PI and representing different countries of origin: Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Conakry, Cape Verde, Sao Tome and Principe, Ukraine, Moldova, Romania, Russia, China, among others.
To provide all necessary information on associations, the ACM, PI created GATAI - Technical Support Office for Immigrant Associations, operating in CNAI - National Centre for Immigrant Support, Lisbon.
For further information click here.

Stay at home. Use online assistance and telephone support for remote services

Migrant Support Line

808 257 257 (landline)
21 810 61 91 (mobile and abroad)

National Support Centres for the Integration of Migrants (CNAIM)

Face-to-face service at CNAIM Norte, Lisboa and Algarve is conditioned. Avoid unnecessary travel. Opt for the telephone service, through the Migrant Support Line, app My CNAIM or by email.

CNAIM Lisbon

Face-to-face service by appointment only
Rua Álvaro Coutinho, 14
1150-025 Lisboa
Fax: 21 810 61 17

Face-to-face service by appointment only
Av. de França, 316
Edifício Capitólio
4050-276 Porto

Tel: 22 207 38 10
Fax: 22 207 38 17

CNAIM Algarve
Face-to-face service by appointment only
Loja do Cidadão
Mercado Municipal, 1.º Piso
Largo Dr. Francisco Sá Carneiro
8000-151 Faro


FAQs about the operation of Public Services, also available in Hindi (hi), Mandarin (zh), Nepalese (ne) and Russian (ru).

Doctors of the World Portugal' Guide on COVID-19:

. Arabic (ar)
. Bengali (bn)
. English (en)
. Finnish (fi)
. French (fr)
. Fula (ff)
. German (de)
. Hebrew (he)
. Hindi (hi)
. Italian (it)
. Japanese (ja)
. Mandarim (zh)
. Mandinga (man)
. Moldovan (mo)
. Nepalese (ne)
. Netherlands (nl)
. Polish (pl)
. Portuguese (pt)
. Romanian (ro)
. Russian (ru)
. Spanish (es)
. Swedish (sv)
. Tigrinya (ti)
. Turkish (tr)
. Ukrainian (uk)
. Urdu (ur)

IOM’s information leaflet on COVID-19:

. Arabic
. Amharic
. Bambara
. Bengali
. Chinese
. Edo
. English
. Esan Ishan
. French
. Fula
. Hausa
. Igbo
. Italian
. Kurdish Sorani
. Mandinka
. Pachtou
. Pidgin
. Romanian
. Russian
. Somali
. Soninke
. Spanish
. Tigrinya
. Urdu
. Wolof
. Yoruba

The information presented is purely indicative, with the main purpose  to provide general guidance without exempt, at any case, the consultation with the competent authorities and the use of professional advice regarding the addressed themes

Migrant Support Line

This hotline is working from Monday to Friday between 9:00 am and 7:00 pm. Get more information here.

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Bem-vindo ao novo portal do Alto Comissariado para as Migrações

Procuramos reunir aqui um conjunto de informação essencial e de interesse para os migrantes. No entanto, sabemos que este é um trabalho contínuo que nunca está terminado.

Contamos consigo para tornar este site mais completo. Se souber de alguma informação que deva ser adicionada ou corrigida, entre em contacto connosco através do