WEBINAR REPORT

Informing the Crisis of Refugees’ Human Rights in Thailand

Date and Time: Saturday, April 30th, 2022, 7:00PM (Thailand)

Location: Online (Zoom)

Topics: Refugee Crisis, Human Rights

Host: HWPL Eastern Busan & Gyeongnam Branch

Speakers:

Ms. Bow Nutta Mahattna, Human Rights Activist

Mr. Kowit Phothisan, Journalist, Way Magazine

 

Webinar was held to inform about the Crisis of Refugees in Thailand. Through this webinar, we shared our opinions on these issues and attempted to find proper solutions to achieve equality and improve the quality of life

 

 

“Even if this is a claim of fundamental rights, Thailand is not trying to get involved. Thai government officials are involved in human trafficking now. I think the story should be spread.”

Kowit Phothisan

 

Introduction Webinar

On April 30th, HWPL held a webinar to raise awareness for Human Rights in Thailand.

Main Theme of this event was “the Crisis of Refugees” in Thailand.

Human Rights activists, journalists and several figures from education sectors attended and were focusing on the refugee crisis in the 21st century and how the answer in peace can be found.

 

Background Information

The refugee crisis is one many countries face, including Thailand. This hadds been a problem in the past and is still going on today, the era of COVID-19. There are currently 24.5 million refugees on the globe and 1.4 million are in desperate need for help for survival. Because of wars from religious and political issues, they leave their own homes regardless of their own wills.
The large number of refugees causes many challenges also for those countries welcoming them, and the effectiveness of the help each country can provide is often questioned.

Thailand is also in a similar situation. Several refugees from the Middle East and Myanmar are steadily trying to flow into Thailand. The influx of refugees causes several problems on Thailand’s border but the biggest problem is the absence of a system to protect the refugees. Unfortunately, citizens are often unaware of this issue.

 

Points of discussion

Mr. Kowit Phothisan
shared about the diverse problems currently faced by the refugees in Thailand. According to his opinion, refugees in Thailand are not even guaranteed a residential environment, and the proportion of women and girls (who are vulnerable to violence) is higher than men. He also said that the Thai government is not taking enough action to solve these problems. The government and the politicians lack of interest in the problems of the refugees and treat them as criminals though they are innocent.
He emphasized that the government of Thailand should actively take action to solve the refugee problem.

Ms. Bow Nutta Mahattna
emphasized the need of law to protect refugees. According to her opinion, Thailand is not willing to accept refugees from other countries, and refugees are unable to gain status in Thailand. Some people who escaped to Thailand pursuing freedom of religion or due to war, they become illegal immigrants and are treated like criminals and not like refugees. The only way given to them is going to a third world or going to jail. Therefore, she argued that Thailand needs a legal system to protect the refugees and to improve these issues.

 

Highlights

Mr. Kowit Phthisis: Most of the refugees tend to go to work outside the formal system where labor rights are not protected by law. They cannot get any compensation or protection from the law as well.

Ms. Bow Nutta Mahattna: The key problem here is that we(Thailand) don’t have any laws for protecting refugees at all. As a result, refugees of Thailand basically can’t be registered. That means, there are no “Refugees” in Thailand reported.

 

Next Steps

We will continue to hold online webinars and provide a platform where speakers from each sector of Thailand’s community can share their own ideas to help with the problem of refugees. During these webinars, human rights activists can raise awareness for the necessity of a system to protect refugees and journalists can inform the participants about the current situation and their viewpoints.

>> Download the Webinar Report