RISE members seized the opportunity and met in Brussels (16 – 17 October) during their presence in the European Parliament in order to discuss thoroughly about their next steps.
Reviewed and finalized by RISE members
We are self-organized migrants and refugees.
We are a diverse group who decided to work together to face the grave situation we are all experiencing:
The increased aggression of right-wing actors; increasing violence against migrants and racism at the individual and institutional levels; death and human rights abuses at the borders of Europe and within Europe.
We are committed to raise our voices, to be the protagonists in our own lives.
- Reminding the institutions and all EU member states that:
- Fundamental rights are not respected when it comes to dealing with refugees’ and migrants’ issues.
- Politicians’ increased use of anti-migrant rhetoric and creating policies that are criminalizing refugees, migrants and asylum seekers.
- Push back policies in asylum and migration cause death (more than 60000 people died in the Mediterranean Sea in the 10 past years many more in the deserts), and contradict international law.
- Detentions centers, transit camps and hot spots are violating human rights.
- Many migrants and refugees flee their countries of origin due to harmful European interventions (e.g. arm sales, over fishing, supporting undemocratic regimes, etc)
- Abuses against migrants and refugee women are increasing due to lack of social security plans.
- Women are disproportionately affected by war and conflict. A significant number of women flee both persecution and domestic violence.
- Precarious and undocumented status of women plays a major role in facilitating male violence: women without papers cannot denounce their aggressors out of fear to be deported. Additionally, the demand-driven market of prostitution, pushes more and more women in the hands of traffickers. In Italy alone there has been 10 time increase in sex trafficking in women most of whom are 13-16 y o girls. Female victims of THB (trafficking human beings) receive no adequate support.
- Deportation to insecure countries (one example is Afghanistan, where there has been continuous war for more than three decades. According to a recent UN report during the last four years, there had been 40.000 casualties in the country. There are no secure places in Afghanistan. Most of the Hazara asylum seekers are being sent to central Afghanistan because of an ill-conceived conclusion that their region is secure and safe. As far as we know no amount of money that has been given to the government has been spent on returning refugees.)
- Root causes
Most of migrant and refugees are forced to leave their homes. Roots of these forced departure must be overcome: these roots are wars (EU weapon sales), misery (EU trade policies) patriarchy.
We are concerned about the many migrants and refugees who are forced to leave their homes due to EU trade policies, weapons sales, etc. These root causes for forced migration must be addressed.
Our demands are:
- No forced deportations Any deportation that put life or dignity at risk must be stopped
- Any EU or bilateral agreement, memorandums of understanding and deals facilitating deportation must be cancelled, the notion of safe countries doesn’t take in account our rights and realities.
- Freedom of movement: All individuals should have an equal right to move freely including migrants and refugees.
- Equal rights, access to labor market in the EU and we stand against work exploitation
- Drop the Dublin regulation.
- Facilitate family reunification.
- The regularization of undocumented migrant across Europe is a first and necessary step.
- We especially highlight the rights of women that are violated by patriarchal practices
- EU member states should recognize the rights of LGBT asylum seekers and end processing their cases with intrusive and discriminatory practices
- The EU Institutions and Member States must respect human rights laws, international treaties and conventions.
- The EU and Member States should stop externalizing and militarizing borders
- EU member states should fund refugee and migrant communities, organizations and media.
- EU and Member States should stop selling arms to underdeveloped countries, instead we urge them to help to bring forward cooperation and long-lasting development programs.
- Social rights for all: health, education, housing, etc. have to be guaranteed to for everyone
- It is crucial that migrant women are afforded recourses and spaces to self-organize in order to resist male violence at all levels of society, be leaders in political processes and shape decisions that impact their lives.
- Participation: No policy about us without us. WE demand to be included in policy making when it concerns our lives.
- In Europe migrant women’s rights are entrenched in CEDAW and the Istanbul convention, without bias to their ethnic, legal, migratory status. Articles 59-61 of the Convention recognizes Gender Based Violence as grounds for asylum and this right should be respected by all EU states.
- In all migration and integration policies “women” and “children” must be treated as different categories. Women’s rights should be respected not because they are mothers or daughters, but because they are human beings born equal and free.
- We want the European Union to stop its bi-lateral agreements to send refugees back to countries that are still unsafe such as Afghanistan (The Afghan government was forced to sign an agreement with the EU in exchange for economic aid that is to be spent on areas to receive the refugees. This agreement should be annulled because the region is not safe.)
- Create the Refugees and Migrants Parliament and finance it.