The latest news on Citizenship and Statelessness from Namati

Dear Friends

To coincide with the first ever Global Forum on Statelessness, being held this week in The Hague, we want to share the work of Namati and its partners, and others around the world who are tackling what has long been a neglected issue. According to the UN, over 12 million people suffer for lack of any nationality - they are stateless. Millions more have citizenship rights by law, but lack proof in the form of legal identity documents. Without a legal identity it is impossible to secure your rights, challenge discrimination or access services like education that can help you escape poverty. 

In Bangladesh, Namati works with the organization Council of Minorities (CoM). Paralegals from the CoM work with the Urdu-speaking community, who despite a 2008 ruling confirming their Bangladeshi citizenship, continue to suffer discrimination when trying to secure identity documents. In just a year, paralegals have secured a legal identity for over 1,400 people for the first time. The writer and photographer Bremen Donovan travelled to Bangladesh to document the lives of the Urdu-speakers, particularly those in the overcrowded and crumbling camps set up during Bangladesh's Independence war.
View Gallery & Feature
Nowhere People
As part of the Global Forum on Statelessness there will be an exhibition of the work of photographer Greg Constantine. His project Nowhere People captures the lives of stateless communities in Nepal and Bangladesh, as well as in Burma, the Ivory Coast, Nepal and Ukraine.

Images & Voices from Kibera
Earlier this year, The Open Society Justice Initiative, the Open Society Initiative for East Africa, Namati, and the Nubian Rights Forum submitted a briefing paper to assist the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child in its efforts to ensure the implementation of the case of Nubian Minors v. Kenya. This briefing draws on data generated from the NRF paralegal program, which identifies precisely how Kenya continues to fall short in recognizing Kenyan nationality for Nubian children.
Download the Briefing
In Kenya, Namati's partner is the Nubian Rights Forum (NRF) an organisation working in the huge Kibera slum on the edge of Nairobi with Nubian Kenyans. The Nubians were brought to Kenya as soldiers under the British Empire and have struggled to be recognised as Kenyan citizens since the country became independent. Even following a change in the law, Nubian Kenyans still endure vetting procedures and delays that other Kenyans don't have to face. Paralegals from the NRF are tracking every case so the data can be used to advocate for changes to the way the country's identity procedures work.
Nubian Stories
Latest Research
The Global Forum has been organised by the UN High Commission for Refugees and Tilburg University. To mark the conference and the 60th anniversary of the 1954 Convention on the Status of Stateless Persons, the University's Law Review has produced a special edition devoted to statelessness around the world.

Articles from the Law Review
The Legal Empowerment Approach to Statelessness

Namati's Laura Goodwin, director of the citizenship program, is appearing at the Global Forum alongside colleagues from the Open Society Foundation, The Council of Minorities and the Nubian Rights Forum. She has written a blog post that describes the impact of Namati and its partners work. In less than 18 months, over 3,000 people have either started the process or secured identity documents for the first time with the support of paralegals from their own communities.
Read Laura's Blog
Global Advocacy

A coalition of over 230 civil society organisations from across the globe has endorsed a call for a target on legal identity to be included in the Sustainable Development Goals currently being negotiated at the United Nations. Add your name to ensure that no one need suffer because of a lack of a secure legal identity.
Sign the Open Letter to the UN
Copyright © 2014 Namati, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences