Daily Archives: Sunday, September 28, 2014

New Items Archive (weekly)

  • Description: Located in the Refugee Archive at EI7.2 UNR.
    Documentary on the Indonesian island of Java, which is home to the planet’s most polluted river and a textile industry supplying some of the world’s biggest fashion brands. Reporter Seyi Rhodes and director Hugo Ward expose the extraordinary amount of untreated toxic waste from the textile factories – non-degradable plastics, household rubbish, dead animals and fish and human effluent – blanketing the Citarum river, which 35 million people rely on for drinking, cooking and washing.

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Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

New Journal Articles (weekly)

  • “The relocation experiences of refugees can be daunting; refugee children must contend with a unique set of challenges. Drawing on Berry’s (1976, 2005, 2009) concept of acculturation that emphasizes integration and multiculturalism rather than assimilation, this ethnography examines the educational practices at Shaw Academy, a charter school for immigrant, refugee, and native-born children. We focus on the school’s involvement in positive ethnic identity development for refugee students, strategies to combat injustices, and self-efficacy promotion. Findings suggest that multicultural teaching, curricula, and programmes, spearheaded by ethnically diverse personnel, promote academic adjustment for refugee students by fostering appreciation for cultural diversity, positive ethnic identity development, and agency. Moreover, students learn to manage conflict and cultivate the intellectual and emotional tools needed to become change agents in society. Our findings provide important implications and best practices for schools interested in proactively meeting the educational needs of refugee students. “

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  • “Refugee camps typically suffer from inadequate means of exchange: hard currency is scarce and quickly finds its way out of the community. In such situations, local demand that could be met with local resources goes unmet. This article evaluates local currencies (also known as community or complementary currencies) as a policy instrument available to address this problem. A local currency fosters economic activity and generates employment by ensuring that a baseline of local demand is met by local supply. A local currency also fosters local pride and has the potential to strengthen ties between a refugee camp and the surrounding host community. The article distinguishes two broad categories of local currency that may have applicability in refugee camps, and presents relevant case studies (examples of local currencies implemented at a Dutch resettlement camp and in the slums of Mombasa, together with a discussion of the increasingly popular use of fresh food vouchers at refugee camps). A full-fledged local currency project of the kind described here has not yet been attempted at a refugee camp in the developing world. The article closes with a list of questions and considerations for practitioners who may wish to undertake the experiment. “

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  • “The sparse literature on contemporary narratives of widowhood among refugee women as a consequence of conflict situations indicates that this aspect of lived experience is relatively unexplored. While loss is integral to the refugee journey, there is a paucity of analysis of how the sudden loss of a spouse under such circumstances can compound resettlement anxieties, particularly when women raise children alone. By exploring meanings attached to widowhood using examples from the experiences of two younger refugee women resettled in Brisbane, Australia, this article demonstrates how they negotiated lives characterized by community ostracism and stigmatization attached to widowhood and lone parenting. The limited knowledge specifically on young or middle-aged widowhood, the compounded impact on lone parenting, and intra-group tensions among refugee women are highlighted. Such an oversight should be addressed to provide a full understanding of complex wellbeing experiences for refugee widows with children resettled in western nations. “

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  • “This article draws on testimony from refugees formerly held in Australian immigration detention centres who either participated in or witnessed riots in detention, alongside academic literature examining riots in a range of settings, to elucidate how and why riots happen in immigration detention. The article outlines a model of contextualizing and immediate preconditions for riots and then uses this model to analyse a series of riots which occurred in Australian immigration detention centres between 1999 and 2011. The author proposes that conditions in immigration detention centres almost guarantee riots and that while practices such as arbitrary use of solitary confinement and excessive use of force commonly act as the immediate triggers to riot episodes, the daily regimen of detention produces the preconditions necessary for riots to occur. “

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  • “Although refugee claimants are often portrayed as a drain on Canada’s economic resources, their employment experiences and contributions to the labour market remain under-represented in the literature. This study explores the employment experiences of refugee claimants in Toronto, Canada. Through the lens of refugeeness, it traces the subjective employment trajectories of refugee claimants, as well as the objective forces compromising their employability. Drawing on 17 interviews with refugee claimants, our analysis shows both that refugee claimants face distinct barriers stemming from their precarious legal status, and that refugee claimants’ employability is perceived as shaped by real and ascribed barriers associated with this status. In addition, refugee claimants perceive employment as an expression of belonging and citizenship. “

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  • “European Union (EU) Member States have cultivated the ‘securitization of migration’, crafting a legal framework that prevents irregular migrants, including asylum seekers, from arriving in the EU. As external and internal border controls are reinvigorated to achieve this aim, the experiences of asylum seekers beyond the EU border, in designated ‘transit’ countries, necessitate further inquiry. Concepts of ‘transit’ are shaped by government accounts of ‘secondary migration’ as illegitimate, and asylum seekers as a security threat warranting containment. Based on interviews with Somali refugee women who have travelled through North Africa to reach the southern EU Member State of Malta, this article traces the impact of the securitization of migration on women’s experiences of ‘transit’. Women’s stories, historically neglected in the literature on migration, provide a lived account of securitization and the gendered ways ‘functional border sites’ operate beyond the EU, enlisting state and non-state actors in producing direct and structural violence. This article argues EU policy is blind to the lived realities of those who seek refugee protection in the EU, and urgently needs to address the structural contradictions exacerbating violence experienced by refugee women in transit. “

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  • “This article illustrates how South Korea is gradually transforming its policies and practices directed toward a growing population of refugees, humanitarian status holders and asylum seekers. Given many deeply rooted dynamics at the intersection of law and society, South Korea has experienced a difficult trajectory, with a high rejection rate, minimal social welfare provisions and elements of discrimination that have caused alienation and distrust among asylum seekers and refugees regarding their host country. However, rising pressure from civil society has prompted legal and administrative reforms set to place the country on a different path more closely aligned with international human rights norms. The government is also beginning to shift its approach away from an overwhelming emphasis on securitization by working out the challenges of helping the country’s refugees chart their respective courses toward membership and participation. “

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  • “Based on qualitative interviews conducted between 2008 and 2012 with Burmese forced migrants in Thailand, this study focuses on the practice of protection and management within long-stay refugee camps. Beyond official refugee status determination, the everyday interactions between authority-types and forced migrant subjects affirm or challenge notions of who gets to be considered a refugee and who is entitled to humanitarian protection. This article considers authorities as ‘street-level bureaucrats’, who rely on institutional power and resources as they wield discretion to interpret camp policy and Thai law in ways that reflect perceptions of Burmese migrants as criminal and deviant. At the same time, this study shows that forced migrants develop strategies to survive this context and assert their claims to rights and their own notion of what it means to be a refugee; pointing to ways protection can be enhanced in such protracted situations. “

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  • “Front line social work in non-government organisations (NGOs) providing services for refugees and asylum seekers is demanding and challenging. Increasing numbers of social workers work with newly arrived communities; however, there are few studies that examine the demands and issues they face. Asylum seekers and refugees face restricted access and limited entitlement to health and social care. This article draws on evidence from a qualitative study conducted in 2006–11 that analysed the narratives of thirty front line workers to identify the challenges faced in delivering effective services and support. It was found that immigration policy in Australia and the UK placed pressure on social workers working with those who are subject to tight state controls and who experience poverty and destitution. In most NGOs in the UK, there is no supervision or structural support for front line social workers, whereas Australian NGOs are informed by a culture of supervision. This article highlights the demands social workers face in their work and recommends improved conditions in NGOs, and targeted social work education, training and research. “

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  • “This study explores linguistic strategies that are deployed by social workers in their attempts to justify and defend their practice with asylum seekers. Using discursive social psychology, social workers’ accounts are examined for the action orientation of their accounts; what are the respondents doing in their accounts? This involves exploring the various ways in which the social workers’ accounts achieve specific actions such as blaming, justifying and excusing. A key concern of the study is highlighting veracity or factual status as a concern for the social workers who were interviewed for this study. As such, the interest is in how such accounts of practice are constructed by social workers in their attempts to render their versions credible and difficult to undermine. The study provides an insight into some of the ways which social workers use to produce accounts of competent social work practice and how this is an integral part of a defensive social work discourse. “

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  • “Since the end of the 1990s, the procedural practice of the European Court of Human Rights has changed as a result of formal reform measures and developments in the Court’s case law. This change is mainly manifest in the fact that the Court is now moving in two directions, which are neither inherently connected nor mutually exclusive. First, the Court appears to be distancing itself from certain categories of applications in order to protect the efficient working of the system and, secondly, it seems to be gaining increasing influence over the execution of its judgments. This article discusses the reforms and case law developments which have shaped these two directions and contextualises the directions by outlining factors which help to explain why the reforms and developments have come about. It is then possible to answer the central question in this article, namely what impact the two directions in which the Court is travelling have on the position of the applicant and on how the Court, the states parties and the Committee of Ministers fulfil their tasks in the Convention system. After evaluating the changes per actor, the article characterises the nature of this change more generally. Additionally, the article points out which lessons can be drawn from the changes and their characterisation. “

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  • “The need to honour the dead is universal, and of particular importance in animist cultures, where the aggrieved dead can cause illness, crop failure, infertility and failure to marry. While the angry dead and their role in rural communities after state conflict are increasingly acknowledged in the transitional justice literature, there have been no longitudinal studies on the humanitarian outcomes and transformational possibilities of exhuming and reburying murdered civilians. Exhumations in rural Zimbabwe in the 1990s, which allowed the reburial of civilians killed in the 1980s Gukurahundi massacres, are assessed here from the vantage point of 2014. Families mostly continue to reflect on positive outcomes from the reburials. The reburials are perceived as having transformed family dynamics, healing rifts and allowing for the reintegration of alleged sell-outs. Retrospectively, it is clear that most people did not know where their relatives were until the exhumations provided a context for previously silent neighbours to tell the truth. Exhumed gravesites that were once indicative of horrific murders now signify wrongs that were put right, allowing the community to ‘go there.’ The potential of reburials to address the rights of the living dead needs to be more widely addressed in transitional justice policies. “

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  • “Judicial empowerment has traditionally been explained as a response to political uncertainty. This article applies this insight to the international context to explain patterns of support for the empowerment of supranational courts. Our analysis of the negotiations that produced the International Criminal Court suggests that the relationship between democratic consolidation and support for empowering such courts is curvilinear. States with no recent experience with the type of autocratic regime particularly likely to commit serious human rights violations generally favored a somewhat weaker Court. In this respect their positions sometimes aligned with those of autocracies. Conversely, states that had recently emerged from the shadow of autocratic rule, for whom the sovereignty costs associated with the Court were countervailed by the benefit of insurance against backsliding toward autocracy, generally favored a stronger Court. Thus, just as uncertainty drives judicial empowerment in domestic contexts, it also drives judicial empowerment in the international context. “

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  • “Largely due to the increasing religious and cultural pluralism caused by immigration, several European countries have attempted to address the relationship between national identity and integration of immigrants in similar ways, highlighting the human rights they enforce as the core of their own national identity. This trend is problematic, however, because it fails to describe the specificities of each state. This article highlights the difficulties in framing the debate about national identity and reflects upon the origins of such difficulties. Concluding that these difficulties derive from a misunderstanding of religious traditions and national identities that overlooks the universal self-understanding of religions, seeing them as opposed to the universal character of human rights, this article urges a reconsideration of the roles of universalism and religious and national identities. “

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Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.