Borderless Europe- Blessen or Burden?
I was invited as a speaker and as a participant at the conference „Borderless Europe- Blessen or Burden” in Cluj Napoca-Romania from the 6th to the 9th of May 2016. This conference was organized by AEGEE antenna-AEGEE Cluj with the support of the Association des Amis de Franck Biancheri (AAFB).
During the conference there were pannel discussions, workshops, Q&A sessions connected to the following subjects: „Borderless Europe vs borders in Europe”; „Europe in crisis- Schengen in suspension”; „Our image of refugees: change of perspective”; „Socio-cultural borders in Europe: the borders that define us”.
We also watched a movie called : „The Great Disaster Europe”.
We also discussed topics such as: „Socio-Economic Borders in Europe and the idea of a Universal Basic Income”; „A leap of faith-utopian thinking and acting in the 21 century Europe; Towards a Borderless Europe-what`s next?”
I was invited to offer my expertise on the migration crisis which is affecting Europe, representing thus the international human rights NGO Issues Without Borders, Issues Without Borders being one of AEGEEs partners since the beginning of 2016. My workshop was intitled: „Issues Without Borders petition: IWB for Refugees! Europe needs new legislation on migration”
I presented our current project „IWB for Refugees” explaining participants that based on the same set of guidelines our team of researchers is conducting research on the member states of the European Union (analyzing the national legislation on refugees and the way the current EU legislation is transposed in the national system, conducting interviews with refugees, showing how media is depicting the issue, presenting also their social life, cultural life, access to education in these EU countries. After briefly presenting the research I also emphasized the use of the research, sending our research in 3 different directions:
- at a national level in every single member state
- directly as a petition to the EU Parliament
- raise 1 000 000 signatures needed for the Citizens Initiative, pass it through the EU Commission which will implement a new EU directive, our researchers are also going to be part of the implementation process in the member states.
I really liked the fact that the participants coming from different EU countries seemed very interested in our project, they asked several questions, started telling stories from their own countries about the refugees issue, even offered recommendations for our petition and some are interested in joining our platform.
It was a great experience because we also got the chance to know each other better, we had social and cultural events in the evenings, even a farewell dinner during the last evening, celebrating 25 years of the AEGEE local antenna- in Cluj Napoca. The organizers were very supportive through out the entire event so thank you AEGEE Cluj for everything, thank you AEGEE, Vision for Europe and last but not least the Association des Amis de Franck Biancheri (AAFB).