ActionStation Aotearoa

May 14, 2021

4 min read

This is home.

A 15,000-strong petition for kindness to migrants in Aotearoa was delivered to Parliament this week, as the community rallied in solidarity. Carolina Albuquerque a Brazilian journalist, based in New Zealand for the past three years, looks into this week’s events.

A crowd of hundreds of people behind metal barriers hold signs, such as, Migrant Lives Matter
Photo: Unite Union
Four people smiling each holding a petition box between them
Anu Kaloti (Migrant Workers Union), Mike Treen (Unite Union), MP Marja Lubeck (Labour) and MP Ricardo Menéndez (Green Party)

“Hiding behind Covid has become the norm for the government to the extent that even legacy issues related to immigration and visa processing delays are being blamed on covid. Therefore, the debate did not lead to any relief for the suffering migrants.

But we are hopeful that the debate will add to the pressure mounting on the government to do the right thing by migrants — be kind.” — Anu Kaloti, Migrant Workers Association NZ

After having received the petition, Green MP, Ricardo Menéndez, and Labour MP Marja Lubeck, who chairs the Education and Workforce Select Committee, presented the petition to Parliament, on Thursday (13th May), in time for the debate around migrant’s rights. Hundreds of people were on Parliament steps in solidarity before the debate started.