Statelessness in 2020
“Statelessness affects more than 10 million people around the world and over 500,000 in Europe alone. To be stateless is to not be recognized as a citizen by any state. It is a legal anomaly that often prevents people from accessing fundamental civil, political, economic, cultural and social rights.” European Network on Statelessness
According to OHCHR, not only is being stateless a violation of basic human rights to having a nationality (See declaration of human rights), stateless persons are subject to several other human rights violations.
New Women Connectors and through our Leading Resilience series along with our most recent conference Reimagine, have come collaborated with European Network on Statelessness and Statefree.World.
We had the pleasure of collaborating with Christiana Bukalo, the founder of the newly launched initiative Statefree.world.
Statefree.world is a digital platform that aims to build a bridge between stateless people and organizations which are fighting to end statelessness.
As one of the many stateless people, Tiana has decided to create a space that facilitates the conversation between affected people and concerned institutions in order to increase access to support while decreasing the fragmentation and transparency of information.
Christiana shared with us her own story as a stateless person, which means that you often lack access to basic human rights, no schools, no bank accounts, public health services, and other basic human necessities.
“Growing up it was like a luxury having a passport”
She decided that she needed to create a solution for the lack of access to info and network relevant to stateless people.
She created a platform Statefree.world
Christiana also shared with us the urgency for such a platform and other solutions now, especially now in COVID times.
Especially that the information is mainly on the Internet, not face to face, and all main services are accessed online. Which proved to be extremely difficult for stateless people.
Christiana’s initiative is undertaken as part of a program of pan-European activity coordinated by the European Network on Statelessness www.statelessness.eu
ENS is also a valued partner and collaborator of NWC. It is a civil society alliance committed to addressing statelessness in Europe.
Based on the belief that all human beings have a right to a nationality and that those who lack nationality altogether are entitled to the full protection of their human rights.
As new women connectors, we share this belief. We, as a movement, focus on mainstreaming the unheard voices of migrant, refugee, and STATELESS women living across Europe. We are committed to ensuring all voices are heard and responded to, so those migrants, refugees, and stateless women can feel empowered.