Italian House speaker: Migrant women are icons of our times

Italian Chamber speaker Laura Boldrini (L) with Lampedusa mayor Giusi Nicolini

Italian Chamber Speaker Laura Boldrini called migrant women “icons of our times”.

“They are courageous, increasingly often depart their countries alone, leaving their children,” Boldrini said.

“[Female] immigrants do not have the social recognition that the deserve. They are capable of making an enormous contribution to our country,” Boldrini said by telephone in connection with a public meeting on Capitoline Hill in Rome, organized by the October 3 Committee.

The October 3 Committee takes its name from the date on which the lives of 368 people were claimed in 2013 a few meters from the coast of Lampedusa. “They make up for the shortcomings of our welfare [system] which is not up [our needs]. It is thanks to them, to their sacrifices, that we can build our careers and go forward”.

The meeting, entitled “Beyond the border – What reception for the migrant women”, took place, with the sponsorship of Roma Capitale – Rome’s city administration – five months after the shipwreck of October 3. Among those who spoke, there was Lampedusa Mayor Giusy Nicolini.

“The history of Lampedusa must make Italy proud,” she said, invoking a law on asylum “to prevent these tragic arrivals”.

“Our reception system must be reexamined. Our migrants can not be crammed into the CARA (migrant reception centres), like that of Mineo where the conditions are not very different from those of CIE (Identification and Expulsion Centres).

“And the Dublin Regulation must be reexamined, which obliges refugees to stay in the country of first entry. Many leave (their own countries) to reunite with their families located in other European countries. Why not allow them to do it?”

Present, among others, were Roman Mayor Ignazio Marino, the Chamber deputy and ex-Integration minister Cécile Kyenge and the Somali-origin writer Igiaba Sciego.