,,Migration and Human Rights“ – new initiative to ensure migrant rights and dignity

  ,,Migration and Human Rights“ – new initiative to ensure migrant rights and dignity
2014 - 2015

The public discourse in many cases presents migration in the context of national security. Lithuanian society is rather well informed about the need and importance of border security from illegal immigrants. However, there is a lack of information on the rights and dignity of these migrants, and the fact that some of them are seeking asylum.

The rhetoric used in public space often criminalizes not the action of illegal border crossing, but the people themselves. ‚Illegal immigrants from Indian detained in Svencionys‘, ‚Border patrol detained 15 illegals from Vietnam and Afghanistan‘, - and these are only few examples of articles presenting the issue of migration to the wider society in the mainstream media. The use of the expression illegal creates the impression that by doing illegal actions the person becomes illegal herself. This criminalization of the people makes it very hard to initiate any discussions on migrant rights Lithuania is obliged to protect, due to negative attitude of the society. In other words, this creates the circumstances to abuse migrant rights because of their illegal status. An open discussion on the issues of migration, including Human Rights and dignity aspects, is a crucial tool for the establishment of democratic values and migrant protection from discrimination.

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