Tuesday, 17 April 2012

human rights meditations: week 13

Migration, Paddington bear T-shirt, supporting refugees, asylum seekers
Migration Paddington Bear T-Shirt by Prints for Solidarity.
Available via etsy. 

Welcome to Week 13 of Human Rights Meditations. Each week we’re looking at an Article in the United Nation's Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Learn more about the series here. This series all about the time that you spend reflecting, and engaging in the discussion via comments below & twitter (hash tag #hrmlak).

This week we’re looking at Article 13 of the UDHR.

Article 13: (1) Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state. (2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.

Read over the article above a few times and let it sink in. As you reflect, consider the following:
·          What's the first picture that came to your mind?
·          How did you respond to what you read?
·          Reflect how you feel about yourself in comparison to others.
·          Reflect on how you perceive others in your world. 
·          Reflect on your understanding of global issues.

Write the article down and stick it somewhere where you know you'll see it throughout the week. This will prompt you to keep the thinking going! Alternatively, write down something that has stood out to you throughout this meditation.  

Now, get talking! Let's talk openly about our thoughts on each article, what we're learning about ourselves and some of the actions we're taking to live more in line with the Declaration. Don't forget that as well as chatting via the comments below, you can get talking via twitter by including this tag: #hrmlak

I'll go first: 

  • In Australia, we think of migration as a huge deal. It's not super common even to move interstate (think of the comments you hear when someone says they are originally from another state, it's all about state-to-state competition). However, in many other regions of the world- Europe & Africa come to mind- migration isn't such a weird thing. In some cases it is by necessity and in others it is by choice. I think a lot of our hang ups in Australia regarding migration are due to the fact that it's harder to get around. Our land is indeed girt by sea, so any decision to make a move becomes a huge ordeal, where it doesn't necessarily need to be. Just a thought. 
  • The image that comes to my mind when I reflect on this Article is of the boundary line between the US & Mexico. It's interesting how perceptions of people attempting to cross the border change the way they may be treated as they do so. 
  • My brother in law's partner is from Vietnam, and they are having a HUGE ordeal trying to organise a visa for her to be able to attend our wedding in Australia. Where those from many countries can travel here easily, she is finding it difficult to get the permission she needs and is being asked for a bunch of evidence to prove she wont attempt to overstay her visa. I hate to say it, but it takes me back to the white Australia policy and raises concerns that perhaps our system isn't as transparent and equal as we'd hoped. 

Kate xx

PS Thanks to Prints for Solidarity for supporting this series and sharing their very cool t-shirt! you can check out their etsy shop here

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