Meriem NAÏLI received her Masters from the Amsterdam School of Law in Public International Law and the Grenoble Law Faculty in International Legal Careers. Having both French and Algerian citizenships, she focused her legal studies on Human Rights and Refugees Rights and wrote a paper on the rights of asylum seekers under complementary international law when they are denied refugee status.
By Meriem NAÏLI
When the subject of “stateless refugees” arises, people often think first about Palestinian refugees. However, at least one other large group of such refugees exists: the Sahrawi refugees. The Sahrawi people originate from Western Sahara – a “non self-governing territory” controlled by Morocco, a matter of much international dispute. Sahrawi refugees fled violence over territorial control, to settle primarily in Algeria, as well as in Morocco and Mauritania.
This article will discuss access to safe, lawful employment for the Sahrawi people explaining why Sahrawi refugees remain mostly unemployed and reliant on humanitarian relief.
On Labor Day, Americans celebrate the power of the individual worker in a society that believes everyone should be able to achieve prosperity through hard work and personal ability. That’s our national ethos: The American Dream. This ethos should also form the foundation of the federal government’s overseas refugee assistance.
Refugees spend an average of 17 years in exile. The majority of refugees live in Africa, Asia and Latin America and—whether in camps or urban areas—would prefer to work and support their families, but are denied access to lawful employment in violation of international law.