16 October 2015

#76 Safer Persecution

A couple of days ago, this list referred to the abbreviated process for refugees from “Designated Countries of Origin”, also know as the “Safe Countries List”. The courts have ruled that differential procedural fairness to be unfair, as we saw then.

But what are these safe countries and why might they produce any legitimate refugee claimants? Let’s pick out a couple of situations and explore them a little further.

Mexico. Not only is there a lot of violence in Mexico, an ongoing was between the police and drug lords, but outside of certain cities, it can be very dangerous to be a gay man or a lesbian…any sexual minority, in fact. And sometimes the officials who are supposed to be protecting you are part of the problem. Surely these cases merit hearing?

Romani people in Hungary, the Czech Republic or Romania. All three of these countries are on the safe countries list, but all of them have some serious problems with the treatment of their Romani citizens. Rampant discrimination, poor living conditions and little recourse to better their prospects because of widespread negative attitudes that are not effectively countered — and are sometimes propagated — by these countries’ governments. These, too, are worthy of hearing, I should think.

It’s all well and good to want to streamline the process and to try to “weed out” the people you think are making false claims, but you really can’t do that without listening to their stories.

Further reading here and here

We don’t believe you
because of our own story
about your country

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