The NOAS’ campaign #ajewelforarefugee

On the occasion of the Government’s proposal of 40 measures that will restrict the rights of refugees, NOAS has started a campaign #ajewelforarefugee (#etsmykkeforenflyktning).

The much talked about “jewellery law” in Denmark has become a symbol for actions that strip refugees of both dignity and rights. Several of the proposed restrictions from the Norwegian government go even further in stripping refugees of their basic rights – and will particularly affect women and children.

What is going on?

The new legislative proposal allows to throw out refugee minors once they turn 18, and it will make it extremly difficult for families to reunite in Norway earlier than in 6 to 7 years.

This is a cold and frightening development in Norway, and we in NOAS wish to stand up against it. A number of famous people have already taken a stand and demonstrated their solidarity with the refugees. Now we hope that more will do the same.

Watch the movie here: 

We use jewellery as a symbol of respect for people displaced by war, terror and oppression. We want to turn the jewel from a symbol of deprivation of refugee possessions and dignity into a symbol of meeting refugees with decency.

How can you support the cause?

You can show your solidarity by donating your own jewellery or donate an amount of NOK 200 by sending SMS to 2160 with the text NOAS200 (NB! the SMS function only works from Norwegian phone numbers). 

The jewellery will be auctioned off to raise money for NOAS’ legal aid for asylum seekers. If you wish to submit your jewellery, please send it to: NOAS, Torggata 22, 0183 Oslo.

Spread the word

NOAS hopes that you will also help to spread this campaign by sharing your own picture or video on your channels through social media with the subject name #jewelleryforarefugee.

This is how you do it:

If you make a video, do the following:

1: Briefly tell the story of the jewel and how you got it.

2: Say what you think about the proposed restrictions (for example that Norway will send out asylum seekers once they turn eighteen / and that it will be more difficult for families to reunite.

3: Finish by saying: I therefore give away this jewel to NOAS. A jewel for a refugee.

4: Share with the subject name #ajewelforarefugee

This is almost the same as the Ice Bucket Challenge.

 

If you take a picture of yourself or a jewel, do the following:

1: Write a short story about the jewel and how you got it.

2: Write in the caption what you think about the proposed restrictions.

3: Finish by saying that which fits: “I therefore give away this jewel to NOAS. A jewel for a refugee.” / “I’m donating therefore NOK 200 to NOAS by sending NOAS200 to 2160” (NB! the SMS function only works from Norwegian phone numbers).

4: Share with the subject name #ajewelforarefugee

You are welcome to encourage your friends to do the same.

 

About the legislative proposal:

The 40 amendments proposed by the government amount to massive restrictions that will particularly affect women and children. The government’s proposal goes beyond what the majority of parties in the parliament have explicitly agreed on in the broad inter-party agreement. Many of the proposed measures will make life difficult for people who have international protection needs and who will stay in the country, with the sole purpose of sending signals to deter others from seeking asylum in Norway.

NOAS fear that Norway now:

  • Closes the border completely
  • Will refuse asylum to people with international protection needs
  • Introduces measures that hinder integration
  • Affects children and young unreasonably hard

Proposals that will primarily affect children and adolescents:

  1. To deny children family reunification with their father in Norway

Stricter conditions of four years’ residence and income requirement to get family members to Norway to be introduced also for refugees. The proposal will deny the right to family life for people who can no longer live as families in their home country, who have international protection needs and who will stay in Norway. This means in practice that children who are left in Syria or under extremely difficult conditions in Syria’s neighbouring areas will not be able to reunite with a father who received protection in Norway until after 6-7 years.

NOAS cautions Norway against introducing Europe’s strictest rules for family reunification.

The Norwegian Directorate of Immigration, UDI, fears the consequence of such rule will be that more women and children embark on a dangerous journey. When the mother and children no longer can safely reach the father through family reunification, more people will have to take the chance to come to Norway as asylum seekers.

  1. Permission to stay only until the age of 18 years for all unaccompanied minors

All children and youth who come to Norway as unaccompanied minor refugees will be granted a residence permit only until they turn 18. Their case will thereafter be reassessed, as if they arrived here as adults. The measure will particularly affect many Afghan children and youth, which is the biggest group of unaccompanied minors seeking asylum in Norway. The exception are children and young people who would receive protection also if they had arrived as adults, such as Syrians and Eritreans.

The government is going to inflict on the majority of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children insecurity, weakened ability to integrate and mental health problems.

Read information about the campaign’s progress in this press release.