Migrante International chapters in Europe have long felt the need of linking together and forging unity in order to promote Filipino migrants’ and refugees’ rights in the region, and social and national liberation in the Motherland.
Filipinos living and working in European countries feel the impact of anti-migrant policies of the European Union and non-member states, and the racism among the local population that these policies engender.
Migrants and refugees, including Filipinos, have always been made scapegoats for the economic crises in their respective host countries: from being blamed for ‘stealing’ jobs from locals, through being branded as an additional ‘strain’ and ‘burden’ to social services. Whilst migrant and refugees are often on the firing line in regards immigration issues, they are not given the platform to speak for themselves, not only to rightfully input on the whole migration debate, but more importantly to uphold and forward a rights-based approach on the issue.
Meanwhile, deep-seated poverty, underdevelopment and political repression continue to force hundreds of thousands of Filipinos to seek employment and political refuge abroad. There are over 950,000 Filipinos living and working in Europe. They desire a homecoming to an independent, self-reliant and developed Philippines where social equity and justice prevail and where no one is forced to leave their family, community and country for economic or political reasons.
Across Europe, progressive migrant organisations of Filipinos have resolved to consolidate our ranks under the banner of Migrante International, the biggest organization/alliance of overseas Filipinos organisations and individuals and their families all over the world.