Undocumented People are a particularly vulnerable group. They are not part of the system in the country they are living at, don’t enjoy the same rights as the common citizen, and are at the mercy of being exploited in a number of ways. Also, the risk of deportation or being detained by the authorities, creates fear, preventing this group from seeking help.
Undocumented or irregular migrants live in Europe’s shadows. They are some of the most vulnerable people in society, often exploited by others but also the least likely to seek help.Horizon, The EU Research and Innovation Magazine
Paperless People have no legal right to work. Nevertheless, the will to be productive and the need for income, can lead them to the so-called grey labour market, or illegal work. Besides this type of work not being considered in the applications for residence based on employment, it presents a great danger of exploitation and clear violations of the human rights of these people, like underpaid wages, excessive working hours and psychological abuse, to name a few.
Imagine the power an employer can exert over an individual in these circumstances just by threatening to file a report to the authorities about this person!
These people can be also at the mercy of criminals, be forced to engage in criminal activity, and/or being subject to indiscriminated acts of violence, since reporting it to the police is out of option given the risk of detention or deportation.
One interviewee likened their life to living in an airport departure hall: airplanes take off and land, people come and go, but the interviewee’s own flight never gets called. When will life change? When will it start?Inka Kaakinen, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Tampere
In her research on undocumented people, Inka Kaakinen observed that, and paraphrasing, “What the interviewees have in common is a crippling sense of insecurity and impermanence.”. By not being able to make plans for the future, not knowing when you will be detained by the authorities, not knowing if your appeal in the higher court will have a positive decision, not knowing if it will ever be possible to integrate and have a normal life in the country, not being able to return to the home country empty handed and face the family who has sold the little they had to sponsor this person’s trip to Europe, among many other scenarios of uncertainty and fear, will unsuprisingly lead to dispair.
I would love to know your opinion about this matter, and happy to answer any questions you might have! 🙂