Our World’s Refugees

Interview with Professor François Crépeau in ThoughtEconomics
14 avril 2018
François Crépeau : Migration is the result of push and pull factors. We as a species always go from a place of trouble or lack of resources, to a place with less trouble and more resources. It is what we have always done, how we have prospered on this planet. We often talk about push factors such as violence and poverty, but the biggest reason for migration is jobs. People think about migration for work as being from the ‘poor South’ to the ‘rich North’, but we all migrate, we travel, and we do so not because of poverty, deprivation or violence. We all migrate. We talk about migrants as if migration from the North  does not exist, and that’s only true because, in the North, migrants do not like to be called “migrants” : they prefer to be called expats, students or retirees. We talk often about push factors, but the major pull factor, jobs, is rarely talk about. People move to where they can establish themselves, create economic and social conditions conducive to having a family, and creating a future for one’s children. This is what we all want.

 

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Envisioning Justice for Migrant Workers : A Legal Needs Assessment

Migrant Worker Center, BC
3 avril 2018

The report provides a literature review, which covers key themes and existing research relevant to migrant workers’ legal needs ; explores the ways in which migrant workers in BC currently access legal information and services ; reports on the legal needs of migrant workers, specifically the areas of law that are of priority need for workers ; outlines and analyzes the barriers that migrant workers experience when accessing legal information and services and presents a set of key recommendations for improving migrant worker access to legal information and services.

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International Francqui Professor Inaugural Lecture – Pr. François Crépeau

Mobility and Migration Diversity: New Horizons for Human Rights
23 février 2018

Professor François Crépeau delivering the Inaugural Lecture as Francqui International Professor on February 08, 2018.

François Crépeau will be at the Université Catholique de Louvain from January to June 2018 as part of the Chair Francqui International Professor for Human Sciences, organised in collaboration with seven universities (UCLouvain, KULeuven, UAntwerpen, UGent, ULiège, USt-Louis Brussels, ULBrussels). He will be staying at the Centre Charles De Visscher pour le droit international et européen (CeDIE) within the Équipe droits européens et migrations (EDEM).

To access the lecture, please click here

  François Crépeau, who just completed a six-year term as the United Nations' leading investigator on the human rights of migrants, says sealed borders are fantasy. (ACHILLEAS ZAVALLIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Why nothing will stop people from migrating : an interview with François Crépeau

Article on CBC
7 janvier 2018

« For the last six years, Canadian lawyer François Crépeau has served as the United Nations’ leading investigator and expert on the human rights of migrants. His post put him on the frontlines of an international crisis, during some of the most challenging years in recent memory…

He spoke to The Sunday Edition host Michael Enright about his time as UN special rapporteur and about why he believes resisting migration is an impossible goal.

In the last six years, in your position with the UN, you’ve travelled around the world. You’ve visited detention centres, camps, places where people try to cross borders. What stands out in your mind now from those visits ?

François Crépeau : I was expecting this to be very grim. And what stood out from day one, when visiting detention centres or camps, was the sheer determination, the grit, the courage of those people — the fact that even if they were detained, in their mind they were already somewhere else. They were already in the next step of their journey. They might be sent back home, but they would come back.

They are going to come whether we like it or not, because this is what humankind has always done. They are going to try to find a place where they can thrive, flourish, feed their kids and educate their kids. They don’t do it, often, because they like it. They do it because that’s where the future lies for themselves and their families »

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  The aftermath of a Syrian Air Force strike on the Ain Tarma neighbourhood of Damascus. Photo Credit: Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

Living in a void : life in Damascus after the exodus

Article in The Guardian
25 août 2017

An excellent article about those who stay home and receive news of those who have gone abroad. Many thanks to Raoul

« I would like to say something along the lines of how the refugees are Syria’s loss and the world’s gain, but I’m not sure that’s entirely true. Abandoning one’s identity is like ripping a heart out of a body. I think of the families of friends who have migrated en masse. For example, I received a phone call from the father of a friend, a man over 70 years old, who spoke to me in tears. He just wanted to speak to someone who understood his language, who understood the secrets of the language, who would listen to a joke in his version of colloquial Syrian and who would have a hearty laugh with him. A hearty laugh – that’s a metaphor for the way people like to live, and refugees in general do not find many reasons to laugh, especially in their first years in exile. But not long after that conversation, the phones stopped ringing. Everyone had dropped into the black hole of exile. »

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