When you think of ‘fair and equitable dialogue about refugees’ let’s be real, Twitter is not the first website you think of. Akin to medieval stocks in which individuals are shackled and have rotten fruit thrown at them, Twitter can sometimes be a breeding ground for insults, rude comments and generally.. the worst of the Internet. Especially when certain hashtags (such as the highly popular and universal #freerefugees hashtag) get co-opted by movements in direct opposition to the sentiment of the hashtag, like when men’s rights activists jump on the ‘feminist’ hashtag.. However, Twitter does have it’s redeeming qualities. And I personally, find it an amazing source for an open and intellectual dialogue surrounding refugees, and also a great way to get in contact with refugee organisations and rights group. So to help you all out, and get you all engaged in some quality Twitter content, I have compiled a list of the people you should be following on Twitter; for updates on refugees, human rights issues and in general, great content!
- UN Refugee Agency: with two million followers (significantly less than Beyonce, but significantly more than all the people I know put together!) the UN Refugee Agency is obviously one of the biggest and the best. Being a huge and extremely critical international force, they are definitely one of the strongest accounts to follow for more general information and updates on the global refugee situation.
- Refugee Journalism (@refugeejourno): an organisation supporting exiled refugee journalists by helping them re-start their careers in the UK. Amazingly inspiring, and great links for longer reading.
- RAC Sydney (@rac_sydney): This is the Sydney based branch of the Refugee Action Commission (RAC) who organise protests for detention centres. This twitter is great for keeping in the loop for activist protests and ways to get involved locally.
- Julian Burnside: We’ve mentioned Julian Burnside a few times, and this is because we think he is absolutely awesome. Julian is out there fighting the good fight, and his Twitter often involves updates from Nauru as they happen.
- Kon Karapanagiotidis (@Kon__K) As the founder and CEO of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, it would make sense that Kon has one of the best Twitter accounts in terms of an engaging and informative dialogue about refugees. A ton of information, opinionated and passionate discourse, and the occasional delicious recipe.
-So this is just to get you started! I have no doubt once you enter into the vortex of Twitter that you’ll find many more accounts to keep you informed 🙂 If you have any excellent Twitter accounts to contribute, feel free to comment these below!