Burqa Ban

Burqa Ban


Much controversy has been concocted in the media about the wearing of a traditional Islamic clothing for women, the burqa (also known as ‘burka’).


The views on this matter vary depending on location and/or opinion, for example that of the leader of the One Nation Party, based in Australia. The One Nation Party is a right-wing populist party, founded in 1997, and led by Pauline Hanson, who has proven to have quite stern views on the burqa, concerning its presence in the field of government. In order to make a point, Hanson wore this Islamic wear into the chambers, and described the situation as ‘really horrible’ and ‘uncomfortable’. She further stated that the burqa is ‘not what should belong in parliament’, thus dismissing her acceptance of wearing the burqa on political grounds.

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In terms of location, the wear of a burqa is permitted in some places (part ban), while some countries do not allow it to be worn at all (full national ban). One of these countries include Switzerland, where a fine of €10, 000 is used as a penalty for violating this particular law.


UKIP (UK Independence Party) also wants the banning of the burqa, some may say a predictable opinion to have, due to their past views on certain controversial ethical topics. A few of these may be Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP, who is proposing to ban those with HIV from the UK and to legalise handguns.


In December 2017, Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany since 2005, has said that ‘the full covering… should be banned’. In European countries such as France, Belgium and The Netherlands, the burqa has already been banned in places such as schools, hospitals, and on public transport.


Another controversial figure in the burqa debate is Boris Johnson, the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs in the UK. In a column in the Daily Telegraph, Johnson described the burqa as ‘oppressive’, ‘weird’ and as not having any ‘scriptural authority… in the Qu’ran’ (the Islamic holy book).  He further compared the women who wear them as looking like ‘letter boxes’ and ‘bank robbers’, giving a sense of criminality to these Muslim women.


Many lashed out at Johnson’s blunt comments, one key figure being Mohammed Amin, the Chair of the Conservative Muslim Forum. ‘Boris is an educated man, he should know better’.


Christine Hamilton was another one of those who responded to Johnson’s comments in the Telegraph. As an English media personality, and a prominent supporter of UKIP (along with her husband), her response was acknowledged by a large number of people. Posting a photograph of the KKK (Klu Klux Klan), she captioned it: ‘If the #burka is acceptable then presumably this is too?’ Here, Hamilton is comparing a violent, racist movement targeting black people in the US to the international religion of Islam. Many replied in disagreement to Hamilton’s social media comment.


As Islam continues to be targeted in the media as a violent religion, and a large number Muslims continue to be verbally and physically abused on the street, decisions on the ‘burqa ban’ are ongoing, and could affect multiple Muslim women worldwide.


Social media and Ethics

The end of 2017 was marked with a scandal that broke the internet. Something more extraordinary than Kim Kardashians ‘champagne butt’ photo, in that, YouTube star and celebrity Logan Paul posted a video exploring the infamous Aokigahara forest with friends as part of his Japan tour. It colloquially known as the ‘suicide forest’ as an infamous destination for the many people who sadly end their lives here. Whilst exploring the forest, Logan Paul and his friends came across a recently–deceased man hanging from a tree. This grim discovery takes a turn for the worse, as Paul insensitively discusses the subject of suicide. He is shown clearly mocking the situation, laughing and joking about the situation with his friends. This comes back to haunt him, as invalidates his initial claims of promoting ‘suicide awareness’. Prior the video’s removal on YouTubenot under YouTube’s community guidelines, but from Logan himselfit had several million views. There was immediate wave of international condemnation, which not only severely damaged Logan Paul’s career as a YouTuber, but, also, started discussions on a very serious subject: the spreading of graphic content on social media. As for Logan Paul’s YouTube video, it is only the most recent of many controversies on the irresponsible spread of graphic content by the media.

One of Sweden’s biggest tabloids, Aftonbladet, recently published an article about a phenomenon that seemingly has become a growing issue; especially in cases when police officers, firefighters and ambulance workers arrive at the scene of emergency. The Stockholm terror attack is a prime example of a recent phenomenon; where the behaviour of a significant amount of the people witnessing a traumatic event can only be described as disturbing. Normally, when a threatening/and or dangerous event occurs, humans respond to this instinctively by choosing the either options of: Fight or flight. Recently, however, another response to catastrophe is capturing the event, whether that may be through photography or video. Emergency events are no longer personal but can be spread through social media for all to see.

During the Stockholm terror attack, victims lied on the ground severely injured, whilst crowds of people started to film and take photographs of them, instead of assisting them. It was even reported that some had taken selfies while at the crime scene, as one takes photos on holiday to show off their experience. Most disturbing of all was the fact a police officer had to forcefully request a blanket to cover a deceased victim who was being photographed by the surrounding crowd. Despite efforts to ensure the victim’s dignity, floods of graphic images from the crime scene were circulated to different social media platforms.

Some might defend the spreading of graphic content as a way of raising awareness for subjects we find it difficult to talk about. Logan Paul defended his video by claiming that he posted it to spread awareness about suicide. When several newspapers in Sweden had the picture of Alan Kurdi, a five-year old refugee who had drowned in the Mediterranean. The extremely graphic image was justified as a way of creating sympathy for the scale and devastating impact of the European migrant crisis. Both of these events were highly criticised as disrespectful to the deceased and for propagating graphic content that was disturbing to see. Graphic content has also been used by political groups to sway public opinion into supporting their political views. Notably, images from the Stockholm terror attack have been twisted and misinterpreted by right wing populists to advocate for more restrictive immigration policies.

This recent incarnation of social media behaviour can be examined through different lens, which may allow us to understand why it occurs. The most obvious being that it is extremely disrespectful. The idea of death to most humans is frightening, and to many, bereavement is the one of the nadirs of human experience. Therefore, it is horrific to imagine that a photo or video is widely available and distributed for strangers to peruse at their behest, yet this graphic content is often exploited.

Another issue of this phenomenon is that the graphic content is distributed recklessly and widely available to anyone, to the extent that it can be inescapable. With the likes of Logan Paul, whose target audience consists primarily of young teenagers, one would expect that an influencer with young viewers to be more responsible. This, however, seems unsurprising considering the desensitisation of violence in media. It can be exceedingly difficult to monitor and filter graphic content, as there are limited systematic controls to ensure that children don’t see problematic content.

This desensitisation to violence also rears its ugly head when victims captured on photographs and video are used as a ‘political football’.  They become a tool for someone’s ideology, and they lose their agency: essentially, they are dehumanised.

There is hope, however, as during = the beginning of 2018, a new legislation was introduced in Sweden. The law, known as the “unlawful violation of integrity” made it criminal to graphic content of other individuals online––without their explicit consent. It is effective in being multi-faceted. As it both tackles the issue of victims of graphic bodily harm (as those in terror events, accidents and disasters), as well as graphic sexual content in the form of ‘revenge porn’. Whilst this is a step in the right direction, there is still much ground to cover. Legislation might help with criminally sanctioning acts that disrespect a person’s integrity and dignity. We must ask ourselves, however, how can we stop dehumanising others? We need to examine the human psychology thoroughly, as we need to realise that behind every graphic post, there will be someone suffering. From a young age, we are all encouraged to show empathy towards others. I believe it is time to understand that this also applies to our behaviour online.


About the author:

Sandra (24) took part in the “My Europe” Workshop in Stockholm in 2014. She is a Juristprogrammet, Master of Laws student at Stockholm University and in her free time Sandra enjoys reading, meeting her friends, travelling and watching documentaries.

Medicinal Cannabis to be Legalised in the UK?

Cannabis is a ‘Schedule 1’ drug, meaning that it is thought to have no therapeutical value, nor cannot be lawfully possessed or prescribed.


However, due to the impact of a number of high-profile cases, such as those of Alfie Dingley and Billy Caldwell, who both suffer from severe epilepsy, the government has decided to review the legality of medicinal cannabis in the UK.


This decision was reached by home secretary, Sajid Javid, who stated: “if the review identifies significant medical benefits, then we do intend to change the rules”.


Alfie Dingley, a 6 year old from Warwickshire (West Midlands), was recently issued with a license to receive cannabis-based drugs. Alfie suffers from a rare form of epilepsy, which causes him to experience around 150 seizures a month. After travelling to the Netherlands, one of the European countries in which cannabis is legal, the conditions of Alfie’s epilepsy improved, due to his intake of cannabis oil over there. Subsequent to this, Alfie experienced 300 days without any seizures.


Another prime example was that of Billy Caldwell, a 12 year old boy from Country Tyrone (Northern Ireland), another sufferer of severe epilepsy. Due to a medical emergency, Billy was granted a 20-day license to take cannabis-based drugs. Prior to this, the cannabis Billy and his family had had with them was confiscated at Heathrow Airport, London.


Home secretary Javid, however, is adamant that cannabis will “remain banned for recreational use”, and that potentially legalising cannabis for medicinal use will not be the first step to legalising it for other purposes.


There were 136,352 recorded drug offences in England and Wales (2016/17), most of which were due to possession of cannabis. Such statistics lead many to believe that the medicinal legalisation will lead to further allowances in the weed industry.


Diane Abbott, shadow home secretatary says that reviewing the legalisation of medicinal cannabis is a process “long overdue”.


20,000 children in the UK do not respond to medication prescribed by the NHS (National Health Service).


There are ongoing discussions about whether the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes will be permitted in the UK, as it already is countries such as Israel, Romania and Macedonia (only in severe cases).






The position religion holds in modern Europe

Over the last few thousand years, ever since the dawn of the first civilizations, our ancestors were desperately craving for an explanation  of their surroundings and macrocosm (1).To do so, they had created an innumerable amount of gods in order to satisfy their need for order and security. This has left a great mark on our history and from their creation and survival, nowadays beliefs have emerged to become worldwide dominant religions. This itself, has shaped and developed the way we understand the world and the people around us. We see how these changes have affected us, but the bigger question is- how it will affect us in the future…

According to a research made in 2015 about self-described religious/non-religious perception in the European Union, 71.6% of the people consider themselves Christians, non-believers/Agnosticism makes for about 13.6% on the statistic; Atheism takes 10.4% while Islam is about 1.8% and other religions- 2.6% ( the statistic has been taken from an Eurobarometer survey (2) made in 2012).Having these religions and convictions on the territory of our prosperous EU, today’s society has been greatly influenced in more ways than one- art, music, culture, law and even cuisine are all due to people’s perception, projected through their belief system or in other words-religion.

However, before making any assumptions about the dominant faith in the Union, that is, of course Christianity, we ought to take into account the refugee crisis happening in this very moment with its main mindset- Islam. Bringing these people on European lands and having them crossing our borders, there is no doubt, and I truly believe it, that in 10 years or so, there will be upcoming changes in the jurisprudence system, dress code and ultimately- in our every-day-life and hopefully, these changes will be for the better!

There are two kinds of these people, entering our alliance- the ones who are trying to escape the horrors and nightmares of war and those so called ”economic immigrants’’. Now the question is- how are we supposed to help hundreds of thousands of people, flooding across our borders with their families, belongings and hopes for a better life, seeking peace and safety , because it directly concerns religion, but before we answer that, we have to completely examine the situation- in fact, more and more refugees are actually economic immigrants, seeking the benefits and utility of our European Union’s social help services -”According to the available statistical data, at the end of the third quarter of 2017, authorities in Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Spain and Cyprus registered 146,287 newly arrived migrants – less than half of the total arrivals recorded by the end of September 2016 (322,299). Overall decrease is mainly due to the significant drop in arrivals through the Eastern Mediterranean route, namely Bulgaria and Greece (96% and 86% respectively). However, when analysed closely, these two countries have rather diverse monthly and quarterly dynamic in arrivals between 2016 and 2017.” (The information is taken from The Migration Flows to Europe, provided by the UN Migration Agency (3)).And even though most of the the people are the victims of these tragic events, there is still this percentage of them, whose intentions were, initially and still are, fully profitable.

We seek co-operation. It is obvious that we have to show empathy for the terrors most of these people had to endure, because it is not only our moral right, but also- our human obligation. However, the process works in both ways and they will also have to show respect and regard for the way we choose to live by or in other words- make some adjustments to their characters in order to improve themselves if they are planning to stay, study, work and live here. If they are the victims, trying to escape the terror and chaos they were made to endure, aren’t they the ones to be understandable and happy we have offered them safety? A society that prohibits its women from working and voting does not correspond with our understanding of values and human rights. Such mindset should not be allowed on our territory. You see , these people have to help themselves first, so that we can help them subsequently.

Due to our millennial- long religious and traditional differences, I propose- and this is possibly the best solution for the ongoing crisis- integration, and to be more specific- the integration of these people into our social, political and economic sphere. Integrating them in our educational system in order to learn the language, traditions and history of the country, in which they want to stay into; integrating them into our economic system, so that they can assist and supply the state’s economic sectors ( primary, secondary and tertiary ), but also those of the EU’s as well and lastly- integrating them into our law and political system, when of course, they meet the requirements and are fully aware and qualified for the position on which they will be applying for. In other words – they will have to adjust themselves to our political and juridical system in order to not only vote , but to also represent themselves if they happen to participate in a political election. In this way, we shall make these people fully authorized citizens on the territory of our European Union and prepare them for the future – a future which they will be ready for.

Without a doubt, not everyone will agree or even try to acknowledge the positive side of these transitions, because xenophobia or simple antipathy are not uncommon, but what people must realize, is for without these changes, I fear that racial and ethnical tension and cultural collision with the local population will be inevitable. Moreover, according to the EU Law system – ”Discrimination on the basis of religion is strictly prohibited under European law”. This is maybe one of the biggest and greatest challenges the European Union has faced up to in 21st century, concerning the belief system of all European

As I said, our society has been enormously influenced by the belief and moral systems of all the people, working and living under the protection of the EU. We might all be different, that including gender, race, nationality, ethnicity etc. and believe in different projections of God, including me too, but there is one thing that we all have in common- our human passion, which unites and bonds us together. We cannot stop change- it’s in the natural order of things to not be at one state and to alter, but it is upon us and only us not only to make these changes for the better of our Union, but to also ensure the well-being of the future generations that are yet to be born. Jesus was not a Christian, Mohammad was not a Muslim and Buddha- not a Buddhist. They were teachers who taught love and respect. Love was their religion.

Compassion, peace and tolerance are essentially what a religion has to stand for, in order for us to accept it- among our hearts and ourselves, and we must not stand for anything else, rather than these values. Religion has helped and guided us throughout our history and in our darkest times and there is no reason to believe that this won’t continue in the future. As a great man (4) once said- ”We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory will swell again when touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature”.


About the author:

Radoslav Stefanov (17) goes to high school in Sofia. He is a member of the Working Group Religion. He likes to study languages, especially English and Spanish, and recently started learning Hebrew too. Whenever he has free time he goes to the gym, as his life motto is ‘A sound mind in a sound boudy’.



  1. macrocosm: the whole of a complex structure, especially the world or the universe, contrasted with a small or representative part of it
  2. https://web.archive.org/web/20121202023700/http://ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/archives/ebs/ebs_393_en.pdf
  3.  http://www.un.org/en/development/desa/population/migration/index.shtml
  4. That great man would be Abraham Lincoln

In Search of Globalization

Globalization defines our era perhaps more than anything else, transcending markets to become embedded in our nature, part of our social DNA. Decades of discussing, analysing and defining have not brought us any closer to a consensus on what “Globalization” truly means. Steger (2009) defines it as ‘not a single process, but a set of processes that operate simultaneously and unevenly on several levels and in various dimensions’. Kenichi Ohmae’s The End of the Nation State or Thomas Friedman’s The Lexus and the Olive Tree present the phenomenon as a by-product of the techno-economic development of the world, which has spread Western values across the world.

For decades, globalization was seen as ‘a powerful economic and technological bulldozer that effortlessly shovels up states and societies’ (Amoore, 2002). Recent years have seen some attempts in presenting socio-political resistance to Globalization, with media and academia alike talking about the unruly power of Transnational Corporations (TNCs), the protests against globalisation, the rummaging of third-world country and the economical ‘new slavery’.

One of the defining issues of globalization is deterritorialization, the way global connectivity surpasses borders, meaning that trade economic activities are no longer dependant on their geographic limits. People, goods and services are instantly available from all over the world, with countless examples of thriving international businesses on mega-resellers like Amazon or Alibaba. Some argue against free-markets with their quick access to products and materials, as it also brings huge socio-economic problems (e.g.: sweatshops for fast clothes), the export of pollution or global oligopolies. Deterritorialization is built on political systems, as trade and free movement agreements connect the world. In a changed perception of borders, EU nationals have free access to travel, work and live anywhere within it. The right to free movement is well established in the 1985 Schengen Agreement, which has abolished custom checks between the (currently) 22 EU members and Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. There is, however, opposition to it, as it permits the access of ‘cheap’ labour from Eastern Europe to the Western markets.

The interconnectivity of people, goods and services has led to enormous capital gain and growth, but it also led to the globalization of threats. The diminishing line between local and global and the transition of social relationships to a virtual or transnational state has brought forth a set of ‘trans-sovereign problems’ that include not just traditional global crime rings, but also cyber war, pollution, migration or epidemics (Karnprobst, Pouliot, Shah & Zaiotti). That does not take into account how interconnected economies are susceptible to great changes (Great Depression, Asian Crisis of 1997 or the Global Financial Crisis).

The exponential technological development connecting the world at much faster paces allows for a space-time compression, a phenomenon described by David Harvey and based on Karl Marx’s theory of the ‘annihilation of time and space’. Harvey found that ever since the early 70’s, there has been ‘an intense phase of space-time compression that has had a disorienting and disruptive impact upon political-economic practices, the balance of class power, as well as upon cultural and social life’. The technological ultra-speed plays a pivotal role in our perception of the acceleration time and space, which ‘mediates between postmodern culture and a post-Fordist regime of flexible accumulation in capitalism.’ (Lizardo & Strand, 2009)

This is not something new, however, with some arguing that globalization has been on-going for millennia, just getting exponentially accelerated. From the global dispersion of the population and the invention of writing and the wheel, traces of globalization can be observed. The Age of Empires rose out of the movement of people and goods. Modern-day China is recapturing the commercial prowess of the Silk Road. The British East India Companies or the Atlantic Slave Trade were nothing less than the interconnectivity of the world and the reimagining of the borders, not just physical ones but cultural ones, through defining what ‘civilisation’ is and placing ‘Others’ outside of it.

Globalization does not just shape what happens, but also how it is remembered. We remember the ‘Discovery of America’ by the bold and courageous men following Christopher Columbus, for ‘King and country’. The systematic destruction, slavery and genocide of the indigenous population have been all but forgotten. It remains the same today with the US export of ‘democracy’. One man’s Freedom is another man’s overturn of an elected government that refuses to abide US economic Imperialism (e.g.: Iran ’53, Guatemala ’54, Congo ’60).

Europe’s own instability can be traced back to the 1870 unification of Germany, which disrupted the balance of power. With the second largest population, Germany intensified its iron, coal and steel production. Between 1870-1914, Germany’s agriculture output doubled, and its industrial production quadrupled, thus looking for new colonies and markets to expand its trading power. Meanwhile, numerous monarchies were declining, leaving way for new constitutional and territorial arrangements. Nationalist movements were arising, claiming independence for states under the decaying empires. This state of tension led to the outbreak of World War One, a never-before seen conflict, a ‘Total War’ that engulfed countless nations and their entire populations.

With the victors (Britain and France) in a state of ruin, the United States emerged as the superior economic force. By 1929, US had 42% of the global industrial output, compared with Britain, France and Germany’s 28% (Hobsbawm 1994:97). The US replaced Britain as the world creditor, which is why the Wall Street stock market crash of 1929 shook the entire world in what would become the Great Depression. It showed that states were not independent and isolated bodies, but part of a global interconnected network. Soon after, the ‘Never Again’ sentiment of the First World War was forgotten and war broke again, in the deadliest conflagration in the history of mankind.

Recovering from WWII took an even greater effort, a complete redesign of the world, geographically, socially and economically. The latter was the task of the Bretton Woods conference, whose main goals were the establishment of a stable system of exchange rates and the financing of the post-war European economies. Led by UK and US, the biggest Western economic powers began reversing their Interwar protectionist ideologies. The IMF (International Monetary Fund) was created to enforce the newly tied to the dollar fixed exchange rates. The signing countries were to maintain the fluctuations of their currency to the dollar inside an established interval. The US would in return guarantee to exchange dollars for gold. At the same time, The World Bank was created to offer long-term loans to facilitate capital investment for production, post-war reconstruction and reconverting the economy for peacetime needs.

The direction set by the IMF and World Bank was ever-present: privatising, reducing or annulling economic regulations, supporting competition, government reduction and a stern financial following of the goals imposed by those adhering to the Washington-set neo-liberal agenda. While not solely American, the set of rules known as the ‘Washington Consensus’ was forcefully applied in post-communist Russia, leading to almost catastrophic results for the population, while allowing enormous gain for the wealthy, both domestic – oligarch – and foreign – Wall Street investors. Deterritorialization allowed a hugely international flow of capital into Russia, but it also allowed a drain of it resources.

The Russian ‘shock doctrine’ (Klein, 2007) was the forceful reforms meant to impose a very strong and sudden form of capitalism post-USSR Russia, whose process of democratization had started under President Gorbachev. TIME’s Person of the Year, he defied the Brezhnev doctrine and implemented policies of ‘glasnost’ (openness) and ‘perestroika’ (restructuring). Under his rule, Russia saw free local, parliamentary and presidential elections, freedom of press and an independent constitutional court. Economically, he favoured a Scandinavian model of social democracy with a regulated free market. However, the West – G7, US and IMF – had other plans: a sudden and short opening of the markets. After a failed coup in which Yeltsin emerged as the courageous leader of democracy, Gorbachev began to be seen to moderate. Soon after, Yeltsin was elected and with the backing of the Clinton White House and the financial support of the IMF, Russia was supposed to emerge as a stable capitalist democracy, in a painful process.

The economic reforms were based on the neoliberal ideals, ensuring the creation of a free market and the sudden privatization of the more than 200,000 state companies, which were up for grabs at submarket prices, with Western investors and the former Soviet elite rummaging through Russia’s failing economy. To make matters worse, he companies were being bought with public money. In an article for Moscow Times, Bivens and Bernstein explained that ‘a few hand-picked men took over Russia’s state-developed oil fields for free, as part of a giant shell game in which hone arm of government paid another arm.’ State funds that were supposed to go into the treasury ended up in private banks, which then used the funds to invest in the privatizing of Russia.

This meant the almost total collapse of the country, with a reduction of their living standard of 80% of the population and a 40% decrease in industrial production. Tens of millions of people faced extreme poverty. When people resorted to selling their possessions, the West saw this as the encouraging sign of a young and blooming entrepreneurship spirit. At the other end of the deal, Russia was the capitalist heaven, with obscene amounts of money being made in short-term speculations. It was that speculation that made Russia vulnerable to the Asian financial crisis of ’98, which ‘crashed definitively its already precarious economy’ (Klein, 2007).

Post-USSR Russia is the best example of the perils of a truly interconnected world, where decisions are made for a country. The general population has little understanding to what a millisecond could mean for the Wall Street crowd or how that ends up affecting them, until it does. It is important to remember that no political theory can be applied perfectly. No matter how contested, globalization is happening, taking our differences, borders and time in its whirlwind. Whether on a micro or macro level, it affects everyone, more and more, sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worst. There is no going back to a world without globalization. Some would argue that that world never existed. The first step to make it better is to understand it, to study it and to find the best way for our society to accommodate it and for it to accommodate our societies.




About the author:

Simona (23) participated in the “My Europe” workshop in Bucharest, Romania, in 2011. In the Youth Council for the Future, Simona is Project Coordinator of the Working Group Education. She is studying at the University of Bucharest.




  1. Steger, Manfred B., Globalization: a very short introduction, Oxford University Press, 2003, 2nd edition, 2009.
  2. Ohmae, Kenichi, The End of the Nation State
  3. Friedman,Thomas, The Lexus and the Olive Tree
  4. Amoore, Louise, Globalization Contested: An international political economy of work, Manchester University Press,  2002,
  5. Kornprobst, M., Pouliot, V., Shah, N., Zaiotti, R., Metaphors of Globalization Mirrors, Magicians and Mutinies, Palgrave Macmillan, 2008
  6. Lizardo, O.,  Strand, M.,  Postmodernism and Globalization., ProtoSociology 26: 38-72, 2009
  7. Hobsbawm, E., The Age of Extremes, Penguin Books, 1994
  8. Klein, N., The Shock Doctrine, Random House of Canada, 2007

Persecuted Beyond Borders

Image result for lgbt italy

After such a great reception of the article we shared entitled ‘Persecuted beyond borders: why Italy needs LGBT refugee shelters’, the YCF decided to interview the author of this piece.

Claudia Torrisi is an Italian journalist who has a passion for social issues, migrations and human rights. She has a master’s degree in Law and has previously worked with some non-profit organisations and projects such as Chayn Italia.

Torrisi has an extremely open background, working in various positions such as a journalist, volunteer, web editor and even worked on the mayoral campaign in Rome during 2016. She is very versatile in her work and as published pieces with openDemocracy, VICE Media and more.

Her piece focuses on the need for centres for LGBT refugees in Italy and documents how some refugees feel unsafe in the current setup. She tells of how they feel attacked and scared, often sensing that they are isolated when they arrive. Many fear telling their stories and sharing their experiences with those they meet in the crisis centres. Their lives are put on hold as they fear criminalisation for their sexual status.

Join us on 15th November 2017 as we interview Claudia Torrisi live on our social media channels.