United Stateless in the United States
Reflections from an activist
in Statelessness, governance, and the problem of citizenship
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I remember the train trip back from Washington, D.C., to Seattle after I had been definitively told by my embassy that the return home was impossible, and that I no longer had any rights to consular assistance. I was told that I was not considered a national of my home country under the operation of its law. For decades, I thought I was simply undocumented. Apparently, things were a lot more complicated. I had no nationality.’ In this chapter, a founding member of the organisation United Stateless reflects on her own experiences of statelessness and how she and other stateless persons connected to create the first organisation in the U.S. led by stateless persons for stateless persons. On the basis of these experiences, she offers some recommendations for thinking about governance relating to citizenship. In particular, she argues that stateless persons must be at the centre of governance efforts and that stateless persons must work with others who have experienced trauma and discrimination to build a better world for everyone.

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