A message from Mia Hansenson-Gross, René Cassin Executive Director
This week at René Cassin we begin five days of actions and events as part of Refugee Week, celebrating the contribution, creativity and resilience of people seeking sanctuary. We will focus on amplifying the experiences of women in immigration detention in an action-packed journey, from workshops, webinars and live streams to take-home resources.
Taking a close look at the misogyny, precarious migration and financial instability that characterise women’s experiences in detention, we draw a line from Jewish women’s detention in the mid 20th century as refugees from wartime Europe to the experiences of women dehumanised in detention today.
As ‘the Jewish voice for human rights’, René Cassin speaks for a people that have lived experience of seeking refuge across the world in search of freedom from tyranny. These experiences are still within living memory, being detained as ‘enemy alien’ refugees in the UK and having borders closed to those fleeing Europe in the 1930s and 1940s. It is for these reasons that we continue the legacy of our namesake, Monsieur René Cassin, who helped draft the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article 14 of the Declaration states that “Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.” It is this instruction that underpins our campaign this week, striving for a compassionate, humanitarian and more effective alternative to the scourge of indefinite immigration detention.
René Cassin is proud to support Refugee Week to raise our voice in solidarity and to strive for an approach to migrants that centres social justice and humanity.