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Master class for migration researchers with Adrian Favell

Friday, May 24, 2019

9:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Haines 279


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Master class for migration researchers with Adrian Favell

School of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Leeds

Friday, May 24, 2019

Haines 279, 9:00am to 12:30 pm

This special session will feature brief presentations by graduate student migration researchers in Political Science and Sociology, followed by comments from Adrian Favell, Professor of Sociology at the University of Leeds and author of numerous books on migration, including Philosophies of Integration: Immigration and the Idea of Citizenship in France and Britain (2001); The Human Face of Global Mobility: International Highly Skilled Migration in Europe, North America and the Asia Pacific (2006); Eurostars and Eurocities: Free Movement and Mobility in an Integrating Europe (2008); and Everyday Europe: Social Transnationalism in an Unsettled Continent (2018).  All papers will be available within ten days of the event, Please RSVP at this link to access the papers: https://forms.gle/Awiao7pZ1rExchaF7

9:00-10:30:  Session I

“El Que Nada Debe, Nada Teme: Ritualized State Violence at the U.S.-Mexico Ports of Entry” Estefania Castañeda Pérez, Department of Political Science

“Encountering the context of reception: How unaccompanied immigrant youths start learning about the law and looking for an attorney in Los Angeles.” Chiara Galli, Department of Sociology

 “Urban Politics and State-Urban Borders: Contested Refugee Reception Offices in Post-apartheid South African Cities” Jay Johnson, Department of Sociology

 

10:30-11:00 Break

 

11:00-12:00 Session II

“When All the Fish Are Dead: An Environment Disaster and the Rise of Undocumented Migration in Vietnam.” Andrew Le, Department of Sociology

“Beyond Cheap Talk? City-Level Immigrant Policy Adoption in Trump’s America,“ Ana Luisa Oaxaca Carrasco, Department of Political Science

 

Paper abstracts:

“El Que Nada Debe, Nada Teme: Ritualized State Violence at the U.S.-Mexico Ports of Entry”

Estefania Castañeda Pérez, Department of Political Science

Abstract. How does the normalization of state violence at U.S. land ports of entry impact transborder commuters’ overall sense of legal empowerment? Transborder commuters are a heterogeneous population including U.S. citizens, legal permanent residents, and Mexican nationals who regularly cross the border from Mexico into the U.S. Using a mixed method approach, including in-depth interviews, focus-groups, and an original survey, I explore the various ways transborder commuters from the Ciudad Juarez-El Paso and the Tijuana-San Diego border regions interpret their border crossing experiences and legitimize discriminatory border policing practices from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers. Preliminary evidence suggests that transborder commuters who reported that their experience crossing the border was positive or “normal,” were not precluded experiencing other consequences from crossing, including direct impacts to their health or experiencing civil and human rights violations. However, these same individuals were more likely to legitimize discrimination as part of a daily routine and were less likely to denounce or file formal complaints when they experienced rights violations. While some expressed fear of retaliation from CBP, my qualitative data suggests that individuals rationalize the various forms of state violence at the border as the price to pay to be able to successfully cross and lead a binational lifestyle. In addition to providing original data on a highly under-researched population, my project demonstrates that despite having the legal documentation to cross, transborder students significantly underreport rights violations in a federal space that many civil liberties organizations, including the ACLU, argue that should not represent “a constitutional gray-zone.” This lack of reporting from legal border entrants could contribute to the culture of accountability among U.S. immigration and border enforcement agencies.

 

“Encountering the context of reception: How unaccompanied immigrant youths start learning about the law and looking for an attorney in Los Angeles,” Chiara Galli, Department of Sociology

Abstract. This dissertation chapter describes how Central American unaccompanied minors and their families come into contact with removal proceedings in immigration court and begin to learn about the US immigration law. I discuss the legal education work that legal brokers working in non-profit organizations do during know your rights talks and legal orientation presentations to introduce unaccompanied minors and their families to US immigration law, often for the first time. The chapter details what the context of reception looks like for unaccompanied minors who navigate the immigration process and apply for asylum or a special visa for abandoned, abused or neglected children, in the Los Angeles immigration court, and describes the “migration industry” of immigration attorneys and support staff that caters to unaccompanied minors in Los Angeles. Despite being relatively service provider rich, as compared to other parts of the country, the demand for legal services always exceeds the supply. I discuss how unaccompanied minors and their families secure legal services in the context of limited resources, and how the type of legal services (i.e. the triage model versus the quasi-universal representation model) available to unaccompanied minors shape the interactions that youths have with the law and their access to legal representation.

 

 “Urban Politics and State-Urban Borders: Contested Refugee Reception Offices in Post-apartheid South African Cities,” Jay Johnson, Department of Sociology

Abstract With the implementation of the Refugees Act in 2000, post-apartheid South Africa established Refugee Reception Offices (RROs) in major cities, allowing asylum seekers and refugees to apply for and renew their legal status while living and working in urban areas.  However, by 2012, and in the absence of any major legislative changes, RROs in a number of major cities – Cape Town, Johannesburg, and Port Elizabeth – were either fully or partially closed down by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA).  While state borders, policies and institutions in regard to refugees and asylum seekers are often understood in terms of national politics and international law, I argue that that urban actors, politics, and institutions have played an important role in contesting and mediating the bureaucratic autonomy of the state over the location and administration of RROs. Developing the idea of state-urban borders, I argue that RROs demarcate contested spaces of separation and interaction among state institutions, urban actors, and refugees and asylum seekers over access to particular buildings, neighborhoods, and municipalities within South Africa. Therefore, through an analysis of legal case records, stakeholder interviews, and fieldwork conducted in South African cities from 2017-2018, I look at how the interaction between urban actors and bureaucratic autonomy has led to the apparently ad hoc, partial, and fragmented administrative map of refugee and asylum seeker policy in the country.

 

“When All the Fish Are Dead: An Environment Disaster and the Rise of Undocumented Migration in Vietnam,”  Andrew Le, Department of Sociology

Abstract: With intensifying storms, severe floods and droughts, and alarmingly rates of land and coastal ecosystem degradation, Vietnam has been designated one of the most vulnerable countries to environmental disasters. This was most acutely felt in April 2016 when a chemical spill from a Taiwanese steel plant killed millions of sea organisms and obliterated the local maritime economies of Vietnam’s north-central coast. The situation was further complicated as the Vietnamese state suppressed information and citizens resisted with unrest not experienced in 45 years of communist rule. Based on 7 months of ethnographic observations in Quan, a village near the chemical spill, I explore how the natural disaster led to a rise in undocumented migration through three processes: the devastation of the local economy, transforming the gendered division of labor, and the state’s unwillingness to categorize migrants as natural disaster victims. Even though the state tried to appeased locals by offering subsidized loans, the social contract between the state and its citizens was broken. Aspiring migrants explored unauthorized pathways while current migrants overstayed their work contracts. The implications of this paper include expanding the nuances of environmental migration.

 

“Beyond Cheap Talk? City-Level Immigrant Policy Adoption in Trump’s America,“ Ana Luisa Oaxaca Carrasco, Department of Political Science

Abstract: In the absence of federal clarity on immigration issues, cities in many ways started creating, adopting and enforcing immigrant-related policies. The anti-immigrant platform of the current administration has prompted responses from mayors and many other local officials. Mayors specifically, have responded to the upstairs threat in different ways some have reassured they will not back down from their current policy, others have stayed silent, while some were forced into picking a side. It is puzzling that mayors would openly defy the President on issues of immigration. But are their pro-immigrant reactions just cheap talk? Are cities willing to engage in reactionary politics beyond rhetoric and adopt immigrant friendly policy in Trump's America? This paper relies on an original data set of municipal level immigrant policies and mayoral statements of the 500 largest U.S. cities, which includes data on mayors as well as municipal level demographic, political, and institutional electoral characteristics. This paper aims to understand the conditions that are present when cities strategically pose themselves as welcoming or unwelcoming toward immigrants through rhetoric and policy. The findings suggest mayors and cities alike may be reacting to political pressures coming from liberal constituents within their jurisdictions when responding in a pro-immigrant way to Trump.

 


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