The Norwegian Government appointed a committee in august 2009 to provide more knowledge about how the Norwegian welfare model works in a time of increased immigration and emigration. The Committee presented its report and their conclusions regarding the future of the Norwegian welfare model in relation to immigration on the 10th of May 2011. The MiRA Centre views the rapport as an important contribution in the formation of future policies regarding immigration and integration, but do, at the same time, worry about the way women with ethnic minority background are portrayed in the rapport and consider some of the suggested solutions to be injurious to the rights of women.
An opportunity to debate and discuss Islamic Feminism with Harvard Professor and author Leila Ahmad, Director of The MiRA Centre Fakhra Salimi and other leading feminist scholars.
DATE: Friday 3. December, 9.00-16.30
LOCATION: Oslo Plaza Hotel (Sonia Henies plass 3, Oslo)
From Friday afternoon until late Sunday evening this year’s Mela Festival was full of live at Rådhusplassen in Oslo. At The MiRA Centre’s tent this year, there was an information stand, a photo exhibit, free henna painting for children and quizzes in addition to many of our publications on sale.
In association with this years empowerment activities, The MiRA Centre recently held a photo workshop for young girls entitled ”Identity is my strength”. Minority women and young girls in our network individually took photos and created picture series which they felt expressed their individual and unique identities. We are proud of the beautiful and creative pictures that were shown at this year’s Mela Festival. The exhibition, like the workshop, was called “Identity is my strength”.
Recently the Norwegian Equality and Anti-Discrimination Ombud Sunniva Ørstavik visited the MiRA Centre. During her visit she made it clear that she intends to reach out to women with the ethnic minority backgrounds and provide them with information about the anti-discrimination law and the role of the Ombud office.
Ossietzky Award 2005 to Fakhra Salimi
This is an award that certainly could have been presented earlier. The award winner has deserved this recognition for a number of years. This years Ossietzky winner has lived in Norway since she was twenty, over half her life. She has been a singular voice and has had to fight hard to not be identified as a silent victim by well meaning Norwegians, Norwegian aid agencies and feminists, but rather as someone that could help, that they could cooperate with or who could independently lead a movement. Fakhra Salimi has portrayed a variety of experiences from the women’s worlds that we, those who are a part of the “majority”, superficially thought we already knew. For the most part, we don’t know.
First of all, I would like to offer a great thanks to the board at Amalie Laksovs memorial foundation for awarding this important human rights award for the year 2003 to The MiRA Resource Centre for immigrant and refugee women. We who work at The MiRA Center feel honored to receive this award and see it as recognition for our work and longstanding and persistent work for women´s rights. This struggle has been fought by brave minority women who have also had many good supporters among our ethnically Norwegian sisters.