Illegality, youth and belonging, registration open for Harvard symposium

The registration is now open for the international symposium on ‘Illegality, youth, and belonging‘ hosted by the Harvard Graduate School of Education on 25-26 October.  The list of keynote speakers include Leo C. Chavez, Robert C. Smith, Leisy Abrego, Sarah Willen, Katharine M. Donato, Veronica Terriquez, Joanna Dreby. The symposium is the second in an event series on ‘Legal status, rights and belonging‘, jointly convened by Prof Roberto G. Gonzales (Harvard Graduate School of Education)  and Dr Nando Sigona (University of Birmingham).Registration fees are $50/$65. Places are limited, registration closes on 18th October.

Why removal is not the solution

Courtesy of Jason Ven @TEDxEastEnd 2012

At TEDxEastEnd 2012 illustrating the deportation gap and how, despite the efforts made by Western governments, forced and voluntary removals have only a limited impact on the stock of irregular migrants in these countries and how an acknowledgement of this reality should lead to a change of policy, as for example a regularisation initiative for undocumented migrant children and young people who are either born or have spent a significant part of their childhood in the UK. I also pointed to US-based DREAMers movement as a model for UK-based activists and campaigners. The video of the talk will be available in November.

Good news! 800,000 undocumented migrants given the right to DREAM

Activists in Arizona (Source: The Guardian)

For over ten years, the US Congress has been pondering if to pass or not a bill called the DREAM act (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) to regularise the position of undocumented migrants who had been brought to the US at an early age. Given the situation of political standstill, the Obama’s administration has eventually decided (out of opportunism and genuine committment) to intervene on the matter through an executive action bypassing the Congress. The executive order grants a suspension of deportation proceedings against young undocumented migrants (with a number of specifications) and issue renewable temporary permits of residence.

The so-called Dreamers movement has been campaigning hard to push the Obama’s administration to act on its electoral promise for years (see the recent campaign). This is a great success story for migrants’ activism. The executive order is not as good as the Dream Act, but at least a step in the right direction. Not least for the strong and public endorsement from Obama to push once again the Dream Act through the Congress. When will we see a Dreamers movement in the UK?

For more info read Amy Goodman’s piece on the Guardian and the coverage of the Los Angeles Times