We are citizens, French or not. Volunteers or wage-earners. Grandparents or students. All of us, men and women, committed with migrants and refugees arrived in France, in associations*, in citizen collectives*, in collectives of neighbours*, formal or informal, even individually.
Coming from different horizons, faced with a double observation, we have chosen to join forces:
- Borders are closing, more and more trampling the ideals of solidarity, people fleeing away from war or poverty are starving, left behind, abandoned in our streets of Paris, of Marseilles, of Dijon and of many other streets.
- Despite a current political discourse of closure and security, widely reported in the media, more and more linking delinquency and migrants, terrorism and migrants, unemployment and migrants, citizen solidarity is developing. From the Hauts-de-France region to the Roya Valley, hundreds of citizens’ initiatives have spontaneously emerged all over the country.
An alliance was therefore needed among all of us, associations of solidarity with the migrants and citizens’ initiatives, to jointly fight against unacceptable and shameful migration policies. Having regularly met since the month of November 2015,it was deemed necessary to set up a list identifying all these initiatives with a threefold objective:
- Better connect the activists together so that they better know each other, to be more efficient and perhaps also less isolated;
- Be an information tool for people having training needs, legal assistance and medical care needs;
- Making this solidarity more visible so as to be able to go against the security and repressive discourse, even xenophobic, which is becoming common place as the election campaign is underway.
Calling for greater awareness among the citizens will lead to further multiply these initiatives so as to be the concern of each and everyone of us; It is to make this solidarity known on social networks, on TV screens, in the newspapers in order to reach as many people as possible, and the more reluctant and circumspect people in particular; It is to show that we, citizens, have another image of France, we want to be a welcoming and open country, showing solidarity, respectful of people’s dignity and rights, regardless of their birthplace, their nationality or their administrative status.
* CRID, CCFD-Terre Solidaire, Emmaüs international, Hackers Ouverts, VoxPublic, OCU, Utopia, Réfugiés Bienvenue, France Libertés, RCI, Cimade, P’tits déj à Flandres, Paris d’Exil/CPSE, COPAF, CEEL, and hundreds of other organisations, associations and citizens’ initiatives.
This campaign was supported (supervision and advice) by the organisation of VoxPublic.