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Insights in the way safety can be improved for transgender asylum seekers: a study focused on increasing safety for transgender people in asylum seekers centres, which could lead to a better well-being of the target group

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Insights in the way safety can be improved for transgender asylum seekers: a study focused on increasing safety for transgender people in asylum seekers centres, which could lead to a better well-being of the target group

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Samenvatting

This research addresses the unsafety issue for transgender asylum seekers in asylum seek centres (Hereafter referred as ASCs), due to violence from other asylum seekers and inadequate support by employees in the ASCs as a result of transphobic attitudes. Literature shows a lack of insights of views, needs, knowledge, and experiences of transgender asylum seekers regarding safety in ASCs. The research was focused on how the safety of transgender people in ASCs in the Netherlands can be improved through the needs, views, and experiences of transgender asylum seekers. This was substantiated by the perspectives of professionals. The research that has been conducted concerns a qualitative research. Four interviews with transgender asylum seekers and refugees, one with a LGBT rights advocate, and four with professionals from Vluchtelingenwerk Nederland VWN (Hereafter referred as VWN), LGBT Asylum Support, the municipality of Amsterdam were conducted. In addition, fieldwork was done at TransAmsterdam and the ASCs of Ter Apel and Wageningen. From the results, it was revealed that transgender asylum seekers experienced extreme violence from other asylum seekers as a result of cultural transphobia and the environmental scarcity of the ASC, which creates an unsafe environment and leads to the concealment of their identity. Therefore, transgender asylum seekers are in need of safe LGBT community places to combat isolation and create a shared sense of belonging (Boje, 2011). Employees in the ASCs should provide information about a shared freedom, through, for example, a LGBT flags which could bring asylum seekers together and creates affinity. Inadequate support and discrimination from employees in the ASCs is caused by lack of knowledge of transgender issues. Workshops for employees about bi-cultural transgender identities, from experienced experts, could create better knowledge and empathic capacity. Moreover, from the data, it was revealed that COC has insufficient knowledge about trans issues and is western cis male dominated. Trans specific organizations and as well as experienced experts connected to the ASCs could lead to trusting and strengthening the resilience of transgender asylum seekers. Organizations should create conditions under which we can use talents, such as the experienced experts in an ASC (Geldof, 2016). Professionals were able to identify the problem of lack of service providing and transfers between ASCs, which could lead to secondary traumatizing of transgender people. These problems came forward with: Name registration, safe LGBT places and trust. Williams (2016) states that new developments in collaboration with processionals is needed. This is substantiated by professionals, who explained that a permanent ASC and collaboration between organizations could lead to a better service, what can contribute to the sense of safety of transgender asylum seekers. This research contributes to insights of knowledge, needs, and experiences regarding unsafety of transgender refugees. VWN can use these insights for guidance and collective advocacy of transgender asylum seekers. The outcome could support LGBT Asylum Support during their consultations with COA and advocacy for increasing safety in ASCs. Moreover, these insights support transgender organizations for their advocacy for the rights of transgender people and creating awareness in the policy.

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OrganisatieHogeschool van Amsterdam
OpleidingMaatschappelijk Werk en Dienstverlening
AfdelingMaatschappij en Recht
Jaar2019
TypeBachelor
TaalEngels

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