Non-citizen children and anti-deportation campaigns

Young people at a demonstration in Stockholm.
Amir Nabizadeh

At a time when migration is being restricted, anti-deportation campaigns have become a political strategy for the right to stay. This project study how young migrants mobilize, what political repertoires are used and what effects they have.

The increasing amount of child migrants seeking asylum has by recipient countries like Sweden been met by increasing efforts to enforce deportations. In turn actors of the civil society have been taken political action to claim rights for non-citizen children through anti-deportations campaigns. Even though anti-deportation campaigns have been the subject of some scholarly attention, we have little knowledge about what roles children and youth themselves play in these campaigns and in what way they can have a political impact.

One purpose of this project is to scrutinize the involvement of children in anti-deportation campaigns and their use of political strategies. Another purpose is to develop methodological and theoretical tools to make possible international comparisons. The project makes use of interviews and textual analysis of material from social media, news reporting and policy documents to get insights into what the political aims of the campaigns are, what strategies and repertoires are used , how the campaigns are organized and what the political effects are. The project contributes to the current state of knowledge about anti-deportation campaigns, children as political actors in a time of global migration. In 2019 I am visiting scholar at the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights, Harvard University and The Department of Childhood Studies, Rutgers University.

The project is funded by the Swedish Research Council 2018-2019, Principal Investigator Jonathan Josefsson