Archive for April, 2014

A Little Sparkle in your Cosmetics sure makes your skin Pop. But your Eye Shadow and Moisturizing Lotion probably have that Gorgeous, Shimmering Effect Thanks to Child Slavery: INDIA

Shimmer and Slavery: The Sparkle in Your Eye Shadow Was Probably Mined by Kids

Children in India forced to mine mica are one of the cosmetic industry’s dirty little secrets.

April 29, 2014 By Liz Dwyer

Download MIAFW: India

ttp://vimeo.com/92545678 #Vimeo

A little sparkle in your cosmetics sure makes your skin pop. But your eye shadow and moisturizing lotion probably have that gorgeous, shimmering effect thanks to child slavery.

That’s because one of the most common ingredients in makeup is mica, a glittery silicate mineral that’s included in everything from eye shadow and blush to lipstick and moisturizing lotion. About 60 percent of mica comes from the Jharkhand region of India and is mined by kids. To help protect those children, Made in a Free World India, a nonprofit antislavery organization, has started a project it’s calling “Safe Villages.”

The initiative will enable kids, as the Made in a Free World India website states, to “spend their days inside schools instead of inside mines.” According to the site, children who’ve been forced into the dangerous mines will be identified and protected from being forced to collect mica.

Because of the crushing poverty around the mines, moms and dads are compelled to send their sons and daughters into the mines. However, according to the project, a mere $50, less than what you might spend on to-go cups of coffee in a month, can replace what kids would earn gathering mica in a year, thus allowing them to attend school.

Made in a Free World India plans to start by creating five safe villages. Along with ensuring the kids go to school, the project will also give them bicycles so they can arrive there safely. Because changing the community’s mindset is also critical to shutting down child slavery, Made in a Free World India is also educating parents about the problem.

Given the thousands of tons of mica demanded by the cosmetics industry, tackling the illegal enslavement of children is an enormous challenge, and Made in a Free World India says it can’t do it alone. If individuals take the initiative and launch fund-raising efforts to sponsor more safe villages, the organization says it can further expand its efforts. That means freedom for the kids who’ve been forced to make us shine.

MIAFW: India

MIAFW: India highlights slavery and child labor in the cosmetic industry. To address this injustice, we are creating Safe Villages to ensure all children in the mica-mining region have access to an education and are free from the threat of slavery. Make a contribution to #MIAFWindia today – madeinafreeworld.com/india!


Scathing Report Finds School Privatization Hurts Poor Kids




Published on Alternet (http://www.alternet.org)

Scathing Report Finds School Privatization Hurts Poor Kids

By Ruth Conniff [2]


Scathing Report Finds School Privatization Hurts Poor Kids

April 25, 2014 |

This article originally appeared at The Progressive [3], and is reprinted here with their permission. This report was made possible by a generous grant from the Voqal Fund.

Gordon Lafer, a political economist and University of Oregon professor who has advised Congress, state legislatures and the New York City mayor’s office, landed at the airport in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, late last night bringing with him a briefing paper on school privatization and how it hurts poor kids.

Lafer’s report [4], “Do Poor Kids Deserve Lower-Quality Education Than Rich Kids? Evaluating School Privatization Proposals in Milwaukee, Wisconsin,” released today by the Economic Policy Institute, documents the effects of both for-profit and non-profit charter schools that are taking over struggling public schools in Milwaukee.

“I hope people connect the dots,” Lafer said by phone from the Milwaukee airport.

Lafer’s research, commissioned by the Economic Policy Institute to evaluate the school-privatization push in Milwaukee, is a sweeping indictment of the growing private charter school industry — and other schemes backed by rightwing groups and big business — that siphon public funds out of public schools and enrich corporate investors at the expense of quality education for poor children.

Milwaukee is ground zero for school privatization, having pioneered the use of publicly funded private school vouchers in 1990.

In its last session, Wisconsin legislators pushed forward bills to close low-performing public schools and replace them with less accountable, privately run enterprises. The Economic Policy Institute asked Lafer to analyze the effects of privatization on the children these schools serve.

The results are not pretty.

A popular chain of charter schools called Rocketship, which originated in California and has spread to Wisconsin, with the enthusiastic support of state legislators [5] and the local chamber of commerce in Milwaukee, is “a low-budget operation that relies on young and inexperienced teachers rather than more veteran and expensive faculty, that reduces curriculum to a near-exclusive focus on reading and math, and that replaces teachers with online learning and digital applications for a significant portion of the day,” Lafer writes.

Rocketship is a pioneer of the “blended learning” model of schools that rely heavily on computers to cut staff costs. The fastest growing, and most profitable, sector of the charter school industry is online or virtual schools, with the “blended learning” model, which combines online learning with a reduced and low-paid staff, a close second.

With no gym, art class, librarians, or significant science or social studies, Rocketship provides a stripped-down program of study with a heavy focus on standardized tests.

“The education model of the Rocketship chain of schools, a company central to the education reform push in Milwaukee, is particularly ill suited to providing the city’s children with a high-quality education,” Lafer found.

Because of its extraordinarily high teacher turnover (the chain relies heavily on Teach for America volunteers), its large classes and reductive curriculum, Rocketship subjects kids most in need of consistent, nurturing, adult attention to low-quality instruction and neglect.

That model, which is also on display in Milwaukee’s low-performing voucher schools, is demonstrably harmful to kids. But it has generated big profits for wealthy investors.

From 2010 to 2013, Rocketship increased it assets from $2.2 million to $15.8 million. And while it posted impressive test scores at its first schools in California, over the last four years, test scores have fallen at every Rocketship school. All seven Rocketship schools failed to make adequate yearly progress according to federal standards for the last school year.

“Given that Rocketship places such a strong emphasis on standardized testing, it is telling that, even by this measure, the company has faced struggles and disappointments,” Lafer writes.

While Rocketship is a nonprofit, its business model enriches its directors through a deal with a licensed software company called “DreamBox,” supplied by for-profit vendors, who happen to also sit on Rocketship’s board.

“The more Rocketship expands, the greater DreamBox’s profits,” Lafer writes.

According to a 2013 Department of Education evaluation, DreamBox has “no discernible effects on mathematics achievement for elementary school students.”

Despite that failing grade, Rocketship continues to use DreamBox.

“It appears the question [Rocketship] aims to answer is not simply, ‘How can we do better by poor kids?’ but rather, ‘How can we educate poor kids while generating a 15 percent rate of return for investors?'” Lafer writes.

“These relationships help explain the venture capital industry’s antipathy to elected school boards,” Lafer suggests.

Both the rapidly growing private charter industry and other school privatization efforts, Lafer shows, have failed to produce quality schools.

Worse, in pushing these efforts, politicians, rightwing think tanks, chambers of commerce and, most of all, the American Legislative Exchange Council [6] are actually creating the very problem of failure in the school system they claim their privatization plans will help address.

A recent proposal in the Wisconsin legislature, expected to come up again next session, would mandate that 5 percent of all of the state’s public schools receive “failing” grades, which lead to closure after the third “F.” Schools deemed “failing” would be replaced by charter shools such as Rocketship. The charter schools, by contrast, a majority of whom failed to meet state expectations in 2012-2013, would get an eight-year grace period before they were judged to have failed, and could not be closed until their ninth year, no matter how many Fs they received.

By judging schools only on standardized test scores, even schools that serve the poorest children with the most chaotic backgrounds, such skewed “accountability” systems set them up to fail, Lafer found.

The resource drain from the public schools, as public funds go to more private business ventures, makes the problem worse.

Lafer takes it a step further, pointing out in his report that the same chamber of commerce officials who promote Rocketship in Milwaukee send their own kids to enriching, well-funded schools with art, music and small classes.

“The fact that what’s considered the gold standard for poor students in Milwaukee is considered unacceptable for kids in the suburbs is just wrong,” Lafer said by phone.

Finally, in his report, Lafer outlines how the corporate lobbyists and their allies pushing school privatization are manufacturing failure for poor communities in a broad, coordinated way, including “the dominant role of corporate lobbies in promotion of online learning and privately run charter schools; the corporate lobbies’ support for dramatic cuts in funding for public services, including education; and these same lobbies’ advocacy for an economic agenda that makes it harder for many families to work their way out of poverty.”

“The idea that what chamber of commerce lobbyists lie awake at night thinking about is what will help poor kids … I mean, we’re adults, right?” Lafer commented by phone.

Wisconsin is on the leading edge of school privatization. But this is a national issue. And Lafer’s report has major national implications.

“When people understand what it is, the corporate agenda for education is broadly unpopular,” Lafer points out.

In a tea party dominated election in Florida, for example, voters rejected the repeal of Florida’s small class sizes promoted by corporate school “reformers.”

“People want the same things for their kids: in-person instruction, teachers who see what’s special about their kid, and, even if they don’t particularly care about art and music, a general sense of a broader education that helps their kids to develop to their full potential,” Lafer says.

He compares support for public education to the minimum wage, which also enjoys broad public support.

“People don’t think they have a right to health care. They don’t think they have a right to housing, or even to food. But they do think they have a right to a decent education,” he says.

“The Kochs and the Waltons are thinking about advancing an agenda that makes life materially harder for the majority of the country. How do you do it? One way is to continually lower expectations.”

Hence the narrative that public schools have “failed.”

But a national pro-public-school movement is pushing back.

Lafer points to the Chicago teachers’ strike as particularly significant, because it focused on quality education for kids.

“It’s not just what you are against but, for teachers, what’s your vision for a humane, just school system,” he says.

“Teachers talk about what it means for kids to have big classes and no services. But for a long time those conversations only happened on the side, not in the context of the union.”

The Chicago teachers’ strike changed that.

“Around the country unions are thinking we need to and we can put issues of educational quality front and center in our campaign,” Lafer says.

And he points to the growing movement of parents who are opposing standardized testing and a stripped-down education model.

This report gives that movement significant support.






New Report: 5 Ways Solitary Confinement is Especially Harmful to Women

My Blog Women in Jail

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New Report: 5 Ways Solitary Confinement is Especially Harmful to WomenTreeHuggers-steew4


Published on Alternet (http://www.alternet.org) Whole Article:


New Report: 5 Ways Solitary Confinement is Especially Harmful to Women

AlterNet [1] / By Janet Allon [2]

New Report: 5 Ways Solitary Confinement is Especially Harmful to Women

April 28, 2014 |

More than 200,000 women are imprisoned in the U.S., and, like their male counterparts, they are increasingly subjected to the cruelly inhumane practice of solitary confinement. But while the devastating psychological effects of solitary have been studied on men, the punishment is uniquely damaging to women in different ways. Last week, the ACLU released its new report, entitled Worse Than Second-Class [3], about women prisoners held in solitary.

In the report, the ACLU explores five ways that the mostly invisible practice of solitary harms women:


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Fox ‘tough love’: Kicking your kid off a skate ramp will make him ‘more successful in life’

Fox ‘tough love’: Kicking your kid off a skate ramp will make him ‘more successful in life’

By David Edwards
Monday, April 28, 2014 10:24 EDT
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Fox News host Elisabeth Hasselbeck

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The Florida Department of Children and Families and the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office have expressed an interest in investigating a man for child abuse after a video showed him kicking his son down a skateboard ramp…


Britain is going backwards on violence against women


Domestic violence

Britain is going backwards on violence against women

Victims of domestic abuse face devastating funding cuts, while their plight is ignored by our media and political elite

Owen Jones

The Guardian, Sunday 30 March 2014 19.30 BST

Domestic violence
‘Violence against women is a pandemic, and needs to be treated as such.’ Photograph: Garry Weaser

When Margaret Thatcher’s government took on the miners 30 years ago, she confronted an enemy that was organised: they had collective strength and a voice. The sides were not equal, but the miners’ strike could nonetheless be described as a “war” of sorts. Many of the targets of this government, on the other hand, are deeply fragmented, rarely seen or heard and often airbrushed out of existence by our media and political elite. Women who face domestic violence and abuse are just one chilling example.

To understand the attack on some of Britain’s most vulnerable…

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And there are people still in darkness…



None Of Us Are Free – If One Of Us Is Chained

By Solomon Burke

Video Solomon Burke – None of us are free: http://youtu.be/cou_qZjc_yI via @YouTube
Video Song by lynyrd skynyrd http://youtu.be/M0N3oRXzaz8

And there are people still in darkness,
And they just can’t see the light.
If you don’t say it’s wrong then that says it right.
We got try to feel for each other, let our brother’s know that we care.
Got to get the message, send it out loud and clear.


Well you better listen my sister’s and brothers,
‘Cause if you do you can hear
There are voices still calling across the years.
And they’re all crying across the ocean,
And they’re cryin across the land,
And they will till we all come to understand.

None of us are free.
None of us are free.
None of us are free, if one of us are…

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Domestic abuse: over 50,000 in UK at risk of murder or serious injury


The Guardian home
Greater Manchester police is under investigation over the way it handled domestic violence complaints from three women before they were killed by their ex-partners, including Linzi Ashton (above). Photograph: Greater Manchester Police/PA

The number of women and children deemed at high risk of being murdered or seriously injured by their partners or ex-partners in England and Wales exceeds 50,000, figures obtained by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary reveal.

In a report that heavily criticises the police for alarming and unacceptable weaknesses in the way it deals with domestic abuse, the Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), has obtained figures which have previously been hidden, detailing the scale of the epidemic of violence against women and children.

Every force in England and…

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“Homeless & Unemployed America”

9 signs that you are setting yourself up to be controlled by other people


naturalnews.com printable article

Originally published April 26 2014

9 signs that you are setting yourself up to be controlled by other people

by Mike Bundrant

(NaturalNews) There are some folks on the fringes of society that intentionally seek to be controlled and get pleasure out of it. You can find them at sadomasochism conventions. I haven’t been to one, but I understand they are quite an experience.

As you wander the aisles, you see scores of masters and slaves. It’s pretty obvious who is in which role. All you need to do is notice who’s wearing the collar and leash.

Sometimes I think the sadomasochists have one up on the rest of us: At least they are playing the control game intentionally. At least they are exploring their desire to control and be controlled, which is far from the consciousness of the average person, who often harbors these desires subconsciously.

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Child Mistreatment, Child AbuseAlice Miller


Humiliations, spankings and beatings, slaps in the face, betrayal, sexual exploitation, derision, neglect, etc. are all forms of mistreatment, because they injure the integrity and dignity of a child, even if their consequences are not visible right away.

However, as adults, most abused children will suffer, and let others suffer, from these injuries.

This dynamic of violence can deform some victims into hangmen who take revenge even on whole nations and become willing executors to dictators as unutterably appalling as Hitler and other cruel leaders.

Beaten children very early on assimilate the violence they endured, which they may glorify and apply later as parents, in believing that they deserved the punishment and were beaten out of love.

They don’t know that the only reason for the punishments they have ( or in retrospect, had) to endure is the fact that their parents themselves endured and learned violence without being able to question it.

Later, the adults, once abused children, beat their own children and often feel grateful to their parents who mistreated them when they were small and defenseless.

This is why society’s ignorance remains so immovable and parents continue to produce severe pain and destructivity – in all “good will”, in every generation.

Most people tolerate this blindly because the origins of human violence in childhood have been and are still being ignored worldwide.

Almost all small children are smacked during the first three years of life when they begin to walk and to touch objects which may not be touched. This happens at exactly the time when the human brain builds up its structure and should thus learn kindness, truthfulness, and love but never, never cruelty and lies. Fortunately, there are many mistreated children who find “helping witnesses” and can feel loved by them.


The Roots Of Worldwide Violence: Alice Miller

How can Britain deport a child at risk of FGM? Theresa May must think again

How can Britain deport a child at risk of FGM? Theresa May must think again

Two-year-old Rashidat was born in the UK after her mother fled a forced marriage to an older man. Now the Home Office wants to send her to Nigeria

Link to video: FGM: Nigerian mother’s fears for two daughters if deportation goes ahead How much can we risk the safety of a small child? What if that risk was of female genital mutilation? And what if the child was born in Britain but is being sent to a country where FGM is prevalent?

Surely the government should be concerned. Just weeks ago education secretary Michael Gove, urged on by the Guardian’s anti-FGM campaign, agreed to write to headteachers reminding them of their duty to protect schoolchildren from cutting. And in February it was revealed that parents suspected of taking their daughters to Africa for FGM are to be stopped by police at airports.

But instead of concern, the government is actually forcing this child, against the wishes of her mother, to leave Britain and be sent to Nigeria. The child in question is Rashidat, now two, who was born in the UK after her heavily pregnant mother, Afusat Saliu, fled Nigeria to escape a forced marriage to a much older man – and to evade the imminent threat of FGM on her other daughter, Bassy, now four.

Afusat’s fear that her daughters will be pinned down and mutilated if they return to her village is real. That is what happened to Afusat herself as a child.

I have met Afusat and her lovely daughters. I’ve helped support their pleas to stay safe in Leeds, where they came to live. Her friend Anj Handa has led a last-ditch e-petition to home secretary Theresa May against Afusat’s deportation, now signed by 100,000 people. “Her children are at high risk of FGM,” says Handa. “She has no support in Nigeria, no family protecting her from FGM that she can turn to; she’s terrified of going back.” Handa says Afusat has consistently complied with immigration rules – and will continue to engage with the immigration service. Her desperate hope is that George Mudie, Afusat’s MP in Leeds East, will be able to secure a last-minute review.

Mudie is urging Home Office minister James Brokenshire to delay the deportation, but supporters cannot confirm whether or not she will fly today. Nigeria has the highest absolute number of FGM cases anywhere in the world. About a third of women in the country have undergone FGM. Some who undergo FGM die; most suffer permanent damage. FGM in Nigeria is officially illegal, but kidnappings by traditionalists are a feature of its enforcement.

The United Nations and the EU recognise the risk of FGM as grounds for asylum, but the UK Border Agency under May’s control, apparently know better.

The hypocrisy is startling. The UK coalition government declares itself determined to lead the eradication of FGM globally within a generation. Britain should be applauding women like Afusat, often having been harmed themselves, who have had the courage to defy the devastation of FGM.

The UN special envoy, Prof Rashida Manjoo, recently shared her concerns about refugee, trafficked and asylum-seeking women who face “insecure immigration status” in the UK. Sadly, Britain seems determined to demonstrate human-rights-denying callousness in the way it deals with women and children vulnerable to FGM – even ones born in this country.

Even one woman or child who has FGM forced on her because she is deported from the UK is too many. It is surely unthinkable for that to happen to anyone.

So here’s my challenge to May: prove to us that no one thus far deported has experienced FGM or other harmful traditional practices since they left our shores. Demonstrate that you have secured assurances from authorities in the relevant countries that they will keep deportees safe. Demonstrate that you are not a hypocrite.

And don’t deport Afusat and her little girls unless you can be 100% certain that this safety net is in place in Nigeria, right now.

I would like to be proud of my country’s record on human rights. At the moment I am deeply ashamed. It can never be OK to send small children away to risk atrocities like FGM.


• The epetition can be signed here


HRW: Q&A: Talking Discriination & School Dropouts in India

Multimillionaire family heir spared jail for raping his three-year-old daughter because judge decided he would ‘not fare well’ behind bars



Multimillionaire du Pont family heir spared jail for raping his three-year-old daughter because judge decided he would ‘not fare well’ behind bars

Shocking details have emerged of how a multimillionaire heir to the du Pont chemical business was convicted of raping his three-year-old daughter but escaped serving prison time after a Delaware Superior Court judge ruled he would ‘not fare well’.
Robert H. Richards IV was charged with fourth-degree rape in 2009 after he admitted that he had raped his daughter almost a decade ago.
News of the shocking leniency shown to Richards, 46, only emerged on Tuesday in the details of a lawsuit filed against him by his ex-wife Tracy…


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Half of New York City Teens Behind Bars Have A Brain Injury, Study Finds

“This Petition is Closed” – BUT

This petition is closed





we’ve got 42,231 signatures, help us get to 50,000 by April 9, 2014



  • author: Sophie Care
  • target: RCMP
  • signatures: 42,231
  • Demand Justice for Raped Canadian Teenager



“This week, a 17-year-old girl from Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia took her own life after being subjected to routine humiliation after her gang-rape.  

Seventeen months ago, the girl was raped by four boys who then photographed her and distributed the photos online. But because the RCMP couldn’t “prove” who had taken the pictures or posted them online, the girl’s rapists were not prosecuted. After nearly two years of waiting for justice, the victim hanged herself.

Rape alone is an unimaginable terror for anyone.  Coupled with photos that are difficult to escape, a person’s life can be, and has been, ruined. So why didn’t the RCMP respond sooner?…”

READ MORE: http://inprisonedwomen.wordpress.com/2013/04/12/who-failed-rehtaeh-parsons-the-chronicle-herald/



Who failed Rehtaeh Parsons? | The Chronicle Herald


Who failed Rehtaeh Parsons? | The Chronicle Herald.

and change.org: for that link please scroll down´:

If the Steubenville rape case broke your heart and made you mad, you may not want to read on.
Rehtaeh Parsons, a 17-year-old young woman from Nova Scotia, Canada, hanged herself in her bathroom last Thursday. On Sunday night, April 7, her family decided to take her off life support because she had injured herself so badly.
Her mother, Leah Parsons, has set up a Facebook page for her, where she explains:
This page is dedication to my wonderful Daughter who was smart, beautiful, and full of life with a deep compassion to animals. The Person Rehtaeh once was all changed one dreaded night in November 2011. She went with a friend to another’s home. In that home she was raped by four young boys… one of those boys took a photo of…

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Class War in Rio. Huge Police and Army raid kills kids

The Free

Armed State Uniforms Wage Open War On Brazil’s Poor: Largest Favela Occupied, 2 Kids Killed, 37 Arrested En Mass

 Americas, Brazil


Two kids, 13 and 16 of age, were killed when special troops of Military Police in Brazil (BOPE), ahead of the Army, invaded the largest favela in Rio de Janeiro on  tanks and helicopters, at 5:30, on March 30th.

37 kids were arrested en mass and held at gun point, when they protested the killing of their friends, throwing rocks at tanks and the armed police. It’s a newescalation of military violenceagainst civilian population in Brazil.

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Frankreich: Unbegleitete Kinder an Grenzen inhaftiert

Illegal immigration at French borders in Roissy-en-France, France in March, 2003.

Frankreich: Unbegleitete Kinder an Grenzen inhaftiert

Pro Jahr 500 Kinder in Transitzonen in Gewahrsam

8. April 2014


Migranten in einem Aufenthaltsraum der zentralen Hafteinrichtung im Flughafen Roissy Charles de Gaulle nahe Paris.

© 2003 Getty Images

© 2014 Laura Schülke/Human Rights Watch

Frankreich: Personenkontrollen diskriminieren Jugendliche aus Minderheiten
26. Januar 2012 Pressemitteilung

„Frankreich setzt mit einer Lücke in der Gesetzgebung die Rechte von Kindern aufs Spiel. Die Kinder sind geografisch gesehen in Frankreich, vor dem Gesetz sind sie es aber nicht, und durch diesen juristischen Dreh wird den Kindern die Gewährung von Schutz versagt.“

Alice Farmer, Human Rights Watch-Expertin für Kinderrechte

(Paris) – Frankreich hält an seinen Grenzen jedes Jahr bis zu 500 Kinder, die alleine im Land ankommen, in Transitzonen fest. Dort wird ihnen angemessener Schutz und das Recht auf ein ordnungsgemäßes Verfahren vorenthalten, welches anderen unbegleiteten Kindern auf französischem Boden gewährt wird, so Human Rights Watch. Jedes unbegleitete Kind, das in Frankreich ankommt, soll im Land aufgenommen, untergebracht und betreut werden, solange bis über seinen Einwanderungsantrag entschieden ist.

Nach französischem Recht können unbegleitete Kinder, die ohne Eltern oder Vormund an einem Flug- oder Seehafen ankommen, bis zu 20 Tage in einer der mehr als 50 Transitzonen festgehalten werden. In dieser Zeit sind sie nach Auslegung der Regierung nicht in das Land eingereist. Durch diese juristische Fiktion kann die französische Regierung Kindern in den Transitzonen das Recht auf ein ordnungsgemäßes Verfahren vorenthalten, das andere unbegleitete Kinder in Frankreich genießen. Trotz eines Gerichtsurteils von 2009, wonach sich Kinder in den Transitzonen faktisch im Land befinden, hat Frankreich an dieser Praxis nichts geändert.

„Frankreich setzt mit einer Lücke in der Gesetzgebung die Rechte von Kindern aufs Spiel“, so Alice Farmer, Kinderrechtsexpertin von Human Rights Watch. „Die Kinder sind geografisch gesehen in Frankreich, vor dem Gesetz sind sie es aber nicht, und durch diesen juristischen Dreh wird den Kindern die Gewährung von Schutz versagt.“

Neue Untersuchungen von Human Rights Watch zu dem Bericht „Lost in Transit“ aus dem Jahr 2009 zeigen, dass Kinder durch Frankreichs Festhalten an dieser ungewöhnlichen gesetzlichen Regelung dem Risiko ausgesetzt sind, dass ihre Asylanträge nicht angemessen berücksichtigt werden oder ihre Abschiebung unzulässigerweise beschleunigt wird.

Zur Aktualisierung des Berichts von 2009 war Human Rights Watch im Januar und Februar 2014 wieder in den Transitzonen auf den Flughäfen Roissy Charles de Gaulle und Orly, befragte elf dort festgehaltene Migranten, von denen drei unbegleitete Minderjährige waren, und verfolgte die Gerichtsverhandlungen von drei weiteren. Human Rights Watch sprach außerdem mit 22 Regierungsvertretern etwa aus dem Innenministerium, der Grenzpolizei und des Flüchtlingsamtes und zog Fachleute von Nichtregierungsorganisationen und aus der Wissenschaft zurate.

Angesichts der negativen Auswirkungen der Haft auf die psychische Verfassung der Kinder soll die Inhaftierung von Kindern nur als letztes Mittel angewendet werden, so Experten. Kinder, die in den Transitzonen, darunter am Flughafen Roissy, Frankreichs größter Transitzone, festgehalten werden, unterliegen verkürzten Verfahrensfristen und müssen mit einem beschleunigten Asylverfahren rechnen. Bisweilen befinden sie sich – entgegen internationalen Standards – zusammen mit nicht verwandten Erwachsenen in Haft und sind dadurch Ausbeutung und Missbrauch ausgesetzt. Unbegleitete Kinder, die sich bereits „in“ Frankreich befinden, werden nicht in Haft genommen und haben das Recht auf eine vollständige Anhörung.

Im Jahr 2009 entschied der Kassationshof, Frankreichs Oberstes Zivil- und Strafgericht, dass „ein Kind, das in der Transitzone des Flughafens Roissy Charles de Gaulle festgehalten wird, sich de facto auf französischem Boden befindet“ und machte damit jegliche gesetzliche Grundlage für eine Unterscheidung zwischen diesen beiden Gruppen hinfällig. Allerdings muss Frankreich dieses Urteil noch anerkennen, indem es seine Politik ändert.

Die Zahl der unbegleiteten Kinder, die jedes Jahr nach Frankreich kommen, ist von rund 1.000 im Jahr 2008 auf etwa 500 gesunken. Nachdem 2009 der erste Human Rights Watch-Bericht veröffentlicht wurde, hat Frankreich im Haftbereich des Flughafens Roissy mit EU-Unterstützung eine eigene Zone für Kinder eingerichtet. Sie ist jedoch zu klein, um alle in Haft genommenen, unbegleiteten Kinder aufnehmen zu können. Mehr als die Hälfte der Kinder befand sich 2013 in mindestens einem Fall zusammen mit Erwachsenen in Gewahrsam.

Erreichtein unbegleitetes Kind eine Grenzübergangsstelle, ist die Grenzpolizei verpflichtet, die Staatsanwaltschaft zu informieren. Die Staatsanwaltschaft weist dem Kind dann einen Betreuer, einen sogenannten Ad-hoc-Verwalter zu, der ihm in der Transitzone zur Seite steht. Dennoch hat die Polizei die Möglichkeit, Druck auf diese Kinder auszuüben und sie Papiere unterzeichnen zu lassen, bevor sie ihren Ad-hoc-Verwalter treffen, der sie über ihre Rechte und die zu durchlaufenden Verfahren informiert.

Den Ad-hoc-Verwaltern, bei denen es sich in der Regel um Ehrenamtliche handelt, stehen sehr begrenzte Mittel zur Verfügung, um den Kindern die notwendige Unterstützung bei komplexen Verfahren, einschließlich ihres Antrags auf Einwanderung und der Feststellung ihres Alters, zukommen zu lassen. In Transitzonen auf kleineren Flughäfen wie in Marseille oder Lyon erhalten Kinder mitunter überhaupt keine Unterstützung.

Die Regierung lässt bei Personen, die sich selbst als Kinder bezeichnen, Altersfeststellungen durchführen, bevor ein Ad-hoc-Verwalter zugewiesen wird, sodass die Kinder auf sich allein gestellt sind. Laut UN-Kinderrechtskonvention hat jede Person, die angibt, ein Kind zu sein, das Recht, umgehend einen Vormund zugewiesen zu bekommen, der das Kind bei der Bewältigung komplexer Verfahren wie der Altersfeststellung unterstützt. Frankreich erlaubt bei der Altersfeststellung keine Revision, das heißt, dass ein Kind, das fälschlicherweise als Erwachsener eingestuft wurde, ohne angemessenes Verfahren abgeschoben werden kann.

Nach französischem Recht werden unbegleitete, asylsuchende Kinder in den Transitzonen einem beschleunigten Verfahren unterzogen, bei dem ihnen ihre vollen Rechte vorenthalten werden. In den Transitzonen müssen Erwachsene wie Kinder, bevor überhaupt eine vollständige Anhörung erfolgt, beweisen, dass ihr Antrag nicht „offensichtlich unbegründet“ ist. Die kurzen Fristen, der fehlende Zugang zu Anwälten und die Komplexität des vom Französischen Amt für den Schutz von Flüchtlingen und Staatenlosen (Office Français de Protection des Réfugiés et Apatrides, OFPRA) durchgeführten Verfahrens machen es den von der Reise erschöpften Kinder faktisch unmöglich, ihren Antrag vernünftig vorzubereiten.

Gemäß der völkerrechtlichen Verpflichtungen darf Frankreich unbegleitete Kinder etwa wegen eines als „offensichtlich unbegründet“ erachteten Antrags keinem beschleunigten Asylverfahren unterziehen. Dadurch soll sichergestellt sein, dass bei der Entscheidung darüber, ob das Kind im Land bleiben kann, das Wohl des Kindes an erster Stelle steht.

Frankreich soll die Inhaftierung von Kindern in Transitzonen umgehend einstellen, so Human Rights Watch. Erreicht ein unbegleitetes Kind die Grenze, soll Frankreich es aufnehmen und dann den aufenthaltsrechtlichen Status des Kindes und gegebenenfalls sein Alter mittels multidisziplinärer Tests klären. Alle asylsuchenden Kinder sollen ohne vorheriges Schnellverfahren direkten Zugang zu einer vollständigen Anhörung erhalten.

Solange es Transitzonen gibt, soll Frankreich sicherstellen, dass den Ad-hoc-Verwaltern adäquate Mittel zur Verfügung stehen, damit diese die Kinder effektiv unterstützen können. Den Kindern soll gleich bei ihrer Ankunft und bevor sie sich einer Altersfeststellung oder anderen Verfahren unterziehen müssen, ein Vormund zugewiesen werden.

„Es gibt keinen Grund, dass unbegleitete Kinder in den Transitzonen rechtlich anders behandelt werden als unbegleitete Kinder auf französischem Boden“, so Farmer. „Man soll diese Kinder behandeln, als befänden sie sich in Frankreich. Ihnen soll das uneingeschränkte Recht auf ein angemessenes Asylverfahren zuteil werden, anstatt sie in Haft zu nehmen und ihnen nur ein Minimum der Rechte, auf die sie Anspruch haben, zuzugestehen.“

Weitere Human-Rights-Watch-Berichte zu Frankreich finden Sie unter:

Segregation Now: The Resegregation of America’s Schools

Hard Time (2014) Shebafilms Kelly Saxberg:http://vimeo.com/86522778

Kids with a mutation in the gene encoding MOGS (a protein processing glycans) are found to be immune to many viruses

Scooped by Dr. Stefan Gruenwald

Kids with a mutation in the gene encoding MOGS (a protein processing glycans) are found to be immune to many viruses

Kids with a mutation in the gene encoding MOGS (a protein processing glycans) are found to be immune to many viruses | Amazing Science | Scoop.it

Most proteins, including immunoglobulins, human virus receptors, and viral-coded proteins, are post-translationally modified with sugars or sugar chains that are generically referred to as glycans. Glycans are primarily classified as N-linked or O-linked oligosaccharides, depending on whether they are bound to the amide group of asparagine (N-linked) or the hydroxyl group of serine or threonine (O-linked). Glycans are associated with protein conformation, folding, solubility, stability, half-life, and antigenicity and are the moieties recognized by glycan-binding proteins. The congenital disorders of glycosylation (CDGs) are genetic disorders affecting the N-glycosylation process. CDGs are divided into defects in the synthesis of N-glycans (CDG-I) and defects in the processing of N-glycans (CDG-II). CDG-IIb (Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man database number, 606056) is caused by mutations in the gene encoding MOGS (also known as glucosidase 1). MOGS is an enzyme that is expressed in the endoplasmic reticulum and is involved in the trimming of N-glycans.1 A single case of CDG-IIb has been reported; the patient died at the age of 74 days from severe neurologic complications.2 In this study, scientists evaluated the immune system and susceptibility to viral diseases in two siblings with CDG-IIb who presented with severe hypogammaglobulinemia but not many infections.

Matt Taibbi: The SuperRich in America Have Become ‘Untouchables’ Who Don’t Go to Prison


Matt Taibbi: The SuperRich in America Have Become ‘Untouchables’ Who Don’t Go to Prison

Taibbi discusses his new book, “The Divide: American Injustice in the Age of the Wealth Gap.”http://www.alternet.org/books/matt-taibbi-superrich-america-have-become-untouchables-america-who-dont-go-prison

AMY GOODMAN: Earlier this month, attorney James Kidney, who was retiring from the Securities and Exchange Commission, gave a widely reported speech at his retirement party. He said that his bosses were too, quote, “tentative and fearful” to hold Wall Street accountable for the 2008 economic meltdown. Kidney, who joined the SEC in 1986, had tried and failed to bring charges against more executives in the agency’s 2010 case against Goldman Sachs. He said the SEC has become, quote, “an agency that polices the broken windows on the street level and rarely goes to the penthouse floors. … Tough enforcement, risky enforcement, is…

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