Who is considered a refugee?

Refugees are those who are outside their countries because of a well-founded fear of persecution on the grounds of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or participation in social groups, and who can not (or does not want to) return home, according to the 1951 United Nations Convention on the Status of Refugees.

Subsequently, broader definitions started considering as refugees people forced to leave their countries because of armed conflict, widespread violence and massive violation of human rights.

Some numbers

ALL OVER THE WORLD
– 1 out of 113 people in the world is a refuge applicant, refugee or internally displaced person;
– Syria is responsible for generating the largest number of internally displaced persons (7.6 million) and refugees (3.88 million);
-Every day, 34 thousand people abandon their houses because of conflicts and threats;
-51% of refugees are children;
– The world’s largest human displacement in history occurred in 2014. Considering internal and external displacements, there were almost 60 million people.
-Countries in development process are the ones receiving the biggest number of refugees, undoing the myth that the majority go to developed countries;

IN BRAZIL
-Brazil has around 10.500 refugees and 30 thousand refuges applicants;
-In Brazil, there are refugees from more than 80 different nationalities – including Syrians, Congolese, Nigerians, Iraqis, Angolans, Palestinians, Cameroonians, etc.
-Brazil resettles around 80 thousand Haitians.

The importance of the topic

WHY TO TALK ABOUT IT?
Refugees represent one of the most significant topics of discussion nowadays, both in the international context and in Brazil. Every day there are news about the big influx of people seeking an alternative to situations of persecution and violence.

Difference betwenn refugee and immigrant
It is importante to notice that the refugees are obligated to leave their countries to survive, it’s not an option to have a better life. On the other hand, the immigrants seek better conditions for themselves and their families. The word “immigrant” refers to every person who lives in another country but not his homeland.

Refuge application
The procedure for applying for refuge is the first step of the national protection system with which the refugee has contact to start the realization of his rights.

One of the fundamental principles established in international law is that refugees shouldn’t be deported or returned to situations where their lives and freedom are in danger.

Refuge request protocol
Currently, under the terms of Law 9.474 / 1997, the refugee, when entering national territory, must request the refuge application in the Federal Police, stating the reasons for the request for analysis.

After this first step, the refugee receives a temporary protocol that is legally valid, so that he can stay in the country until the end of his request’s analysis. This document also guarantees the issuance of a work record booklet.

Infrastructure 
Normally, refugees face big difficulties to find jobs, residencies and access to public services. One of the challenges to claim their rights – but not the only one – is the communication obstacle since they don’t speak Portuguese language.