2017, March 15 – We are very excited for our partner, Child Rights Protection Center, and their daughter who has recently received official statehood! Check out their post about it:
We are pleased to announce that one of our daughters has officially achieved Thai citizenship. This means she is no longer stateless. We now have two remaining stateless daughters at the Sunflower House, and we are fighting to have their rights acknowledged.
The stateless daughter in the picture below (tweeted last May) is now in the process of obtaining has citizenship. Someday in the not-too-distant future, she will be holding a passport of her very own.
People usually acquire a nationality automatically at birth, either through their parents or the country in which they were born.
According to the UNHCR, “Worldwide, 10 million people are stateless. A stateless person does not have citizenship any country. Statelessness has serious consequences for people in almost every country and in all regions of the world, including in Thailand. They often lack of basic human rights, such as access to proper education, social services and health care.”
“Statelessness can occur for several reasons, such as discrimination against particular ethnic or religious groups, or on the basis of gender; the emergence of new States and transfers of territory between existing States; and gaps in nationality laws.If the children are born at home or in small hospitals that have poor record keeping, it is sometimes impossible to obtain a birth certificate, making citizenship impossible to prove.“ In some cases, new parents might face a language barrier, or simply be unaware that they are required to register a birth.
Some of our daughters are stateless, because their parents came to Thailand as refugees or undocumented migrant workers. We have been working hard to get the proper documents for them, and with the help of their school, village officials and partner organizations, one of our girls has finally obtained their citizenship.
As Thai citizens, our daughters will be able to obtain legitimate degree certificates, access Thai healthcare, and have legal rights under Thai law. It also means that they will no longer have to request written permission to travel within Thailand, and will be able to acquire passports – meaning that one day they can leave the country if they wish. Perhaps they will even study abroad! It is amazing news and we are so happy that they one of our daughters has finally been able to obtain these basic rights. We hope that we will be able to achieve this for all of our daughters, and will keep fighting for a future where children’s rights are respected regardless of their ‘status’ at birth.
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