World Refugee Day 2020

Today marks World Refugee Day 2020 and this year we’re exploring the theme of Imagine’ – a theme which seems all the more relevant at present when so many of us around the world are living in isolation. In times of difficulty, our individual and collective imagination can be an extremely powerful tool to envision a better future for our world and the world’s most vulnerable communities.

Refugee day is marked on the 20th June every year to celebrate the contribution of refugees to society and to highlight the importance of integration. It is also an opportunity to educate each other on some of the issues facing refugees today, on the reasons why people migrate and what we can all be doing to support displaced people in our own communities and further afield.

For many refugees this is not the first year they have experienced Refugee Day as a refugee. In protracted situations, displacement can extended over decades across multiple generations, often as a result of ongoing conflicts and insecurity in their home countries, or a lack of rehabilitation following crisis resolution.

Today there are over 70 million forcibly displaced people in the world and 25.9 million of them are refugees. Hearing such vast figures can often seem overwhelming, leaving us unsure what we can do to help, which is why this World Refugee Day we are calling for #SafeandLegalRoutes. Supporting and advocating for Safe and Legal Routes is a practical goal we can all contribute toward to prevent asylum seeker from being forced to face dangerous and horrific journeys in their desperation to escape crises and find safety.

Conflict and insecurity in countries such as Syria, Sudan and Libya has extended over many years with people continually making often hazardous migration journeys, in order to find protection. Therefore, for those not involved in peace-talks we must find alternative ways of limiting the human suffering resulting from such conflicts, which have already displaced so many and continue to displace thousands more every year.

“Decades of conflicts and persecutions of targeted groups has left behind countless casualties, destruction and has displaced thousands, forcing them to leave everything they own and has very often separated families and loved ones from each other.

For this reason, on World Refugee Day, I am reiterating again the desperate need to establish and implement safe and legal entry channels for refugees worldwide, so that after suffering so much violence from the conflicts in the territories from which they come, they can reach a host country in a safe and orderly way without the necessity to face further dangers in their migration journey.”

MOAS co-founder Regina Catrambone

Over the next few months we are going to be discussing the different corridors available for safe and legal routes in more depth to demonstrate how integral these changes can be in mitigating human suffering as a result of forced migration from humanitarian, medical and work visas to family reunification.

Getting involved in our call for #SafeandLegalRoutes is a simple yet practical way to advocate for the rights of displaced people worldwide by demanding that those in power take the issue of displacement seriously and provide safe alternatives to the dangerous migration routes across the world as migration should not come at the cost of suspending your human rights and it should certainly not have to mean putting the life of oneself and ones family at risk.

So, if you are looking for ways to get involved in this year’s World Refugee Day why not join MOAS’ online campaign calling for #SafeandLegalRoutes and help us educate and advocate for safer migration experiences worldwide. Just tag us in your posts @moas_eu, use the hashtag #SafeandLegalRoutes, share our campaign appeal and join the movement today so that vulnerable communities no longer fall victim to smugglers, trafficking and other exploitation, but instead are able to access safe resettlement systems with the support of International actors.

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