European Platform Against Trafficking in Human Beings

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News | Don't criminalise human rights

The Dutch government wants to make having an irregular status a criminal offence and to make it impossible for those who have lived in the country without residence papers, to regularize their status, even when this legalization would be justified by relevant new evidence in relation to their cases. A coalition of opposing organisations "Maak Mensenrechten niet strafbaar" (Don’t criminalize human rights) is protesting against these proposals, which they believe will have negative consequences for vulnerable groups in society, and will undermine social cohesion. This petition was initiated by the Dutch church organization Kerk in Aktie and Dutch protestant Churches and has, at the moment, over 10 000 signatories, including individuals, non-government and church organizations, municipalities and international organizations, including La Strada International. The signatories stress that human rights are of utmost importance in the area of migration and criminalization of the illegal status does not contribute to a safe society. Therefore the signatories call on the government not to continue with its plans to criminalize illegal status.

You can see the full text of the petition here

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