Disabled Peoples' International - Europe

DPI Europe

Migrants’ rights are Human Rights!

Inspirated by Hannan

Zagreb, Croatia, Sunday, 15 October 2017

Human mobility has been increasing rapidly. Internal and international migrants, refugees and asylum- seekers, students, business travelers and tourists move every day all around the world. Migrants, asylum seekers and refugees (we use ‘migrants’ here to cover all these groups) constitute a significant and growing proportion of the population in EU Members States. Among them migrants with disabilities are more affected and face more barriers to overcome due to their lack of knowledge of the local language, of cultural norms and access to social activities.

As the most vulnerable of migrants, people with disabilities need special protection of their rights, taking into account their complex physical and psychological needs. Only in this way will they be able to deal with the traumatic situation they face. Not knowing the language of the country where they find themselves, migrants with disabilities have limited access to information, and are also unaware of local risks and resources available to deal with them.

Based on practical experiences of migrants with disabilities, Disabled Peoples’ International Europe demands that host countries:

  • Take positive action to ensure migrants with disabilities be put in touch with associations or self- help groups of migrants with disabilities to share mutual understanding and experiences in order to remove cultural, social-economic, procedural, physical, communication and attitudinal barriers to their integration. This will also give them the opportunity to represent their voice in decisions relating to their rights.

  • Ensure that networking of Disabled People Organizations (DPOs) and migrants groups be supported to undertake studies on the plight of these groups in order to share their experiences, to encourage and inform stakeholders in the host community and to develop peer support to prepare people for all barriers they may face. The meaningful engagement of migrants with disabilities and DPOs would mean that the former could benefit from the latter’s expertise and experience.

  • Ensure that all national and international institutions and organisations are held responsible for respecting the rights of migrants with disabilities on the basis of the CRPD.

  • Understand and take positive action reflecting the fact that people with disabilities are not just beneficiaries but also participants with unique skills and capacities, making important, positive contributions in their countries.

Tribute to Hannan

Hannan passed away on Friday October 30rd at 10:00 a.m. after a long disease at the hospital Delafontaine de St Denis (93).

Hannan supported us more than we supported him, his engagement was plenty of competencies, talent, kindness and determination. He was a professional working for people with disabilities, and discovered the real struggles they suffer when he became disabled. He fighted against discrimination, supported the weakests, people with disabilities, migrants and refugees, and proved that the future is linked to those of the poorests because it's them who change the world.

Hannan had no children but left many orphans, nephews, cousins, relatives, and friends. Everyone who met him not refuse him anything, wherever he went and whatever he asked for, he obtained with smiles; medical support, social apartment in Paris, training courses to learn French, social income and the French nationality. His biggest regret was to have not find a paid job.

With our deep condolence to his family and friends worldwide.

As people with disabilities we want to work with all stakeholders to build inclusive societies with no one left behind. We and our organizations have important expertise derived from our lived experience to make a key contribution in building an inclusive approach to national and international human rights based approach to migration.

© DPI-E 2023