The webinar is being held on the seventh anniversary of the launch of the UNHCR #Ibelong Campaign, and will showcase progress made in efforts to combat statelessness and discuss opportunities for greater impact in the years ahead.
The webinar, organized by the World Council of Churches (WCC) and the Global Campaign for Equal Nationality Rights, will also be an opportunity to mark the 60th anniversary of the adoption of the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.
Stateless people face wide-ranging hardships and human rights violations throughout their lives, from obstacles to accessing education, healthcare, and employment, to limitations on their freedom of movement and even family unity.
The webinar will explore how statelessness is a problem that can be resolved with the political will. Speakers will discuss how, in most cases, statelessness is a result of discrimination, such as when a state denies citizens the right to pass nationality to their children on the basis of the citizen’s gender, or when certain ethnic or religious groups are excluded from citizenship on the basis of their identity.
Every ten minutes a child is born stateless. In many countries, children are at risk of statelessness due to their lack of birth certificates and inability to prove their legal link to their parents or place of birth.
Today, there is a growing global movement to end statelessness. As part of this effort, the UN Refugee Agency for Refugees launched the ten-year #Ibelong Campaign in 2014 to engage governments, intergovernmental institutions, and civil society on actions needed to end statelessness. Since that time, the WCC and the Global Campaign for Equal Nationality Rights have worked with partners in multiple regions to combat statelessness, though the promotion of every child’s right to a nationality, universal birth registration, and gender-equal nationality rights.
Moderator: Ekaterina, Founding member of United Stateless
- Prof. Fernand de Varennes, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues
- Bishop Kortu Brown, President, Liberia Council of Churches
- Radha Govil , Senior Legal Officer (Statelessness), Division of International Protection at UNHCR
- Christiana Bukalo stateless activist and founder of State Free World
- Li Li, a mother affected by gender discrimination in Malaysia’s nationality law