12th of March in Leipzig: Learning how to live? –

Symposium on the practice of housing Refugees and options for self-determined living

Place: Geisteswissenschaftliches Zentrum (GWZ), University of Leipzig, Beethoven Straße 15, 04107 Leipzig

Please register until 1st of March. Please follow this link for registartion!

The following program is planned: Download Program of the Symposium (PDF)

Sponsored by the Amadeu Antonio Stiftung

The housing of Refugees in collective accommodations is regulated by law since the eighties and is, since then, politically and socio-pedagogically not scrutinized with a few exceptions. And yet, especially for the affected, this practice of housing means constrains of self-determination. It leads to isolation and blocks participation in social life. This current practice is socio-politically borrowed from the support work and assistance to the homeless. In contrast stand US -American and European projects of assistance to the homeless: those operate already successfully according to the principle housing first.

Accordingly, the aim of this symposium is – besides an analysis of the current housing and living situation of Refugees – to confront the current practice of housing Refugees with US -American and European projects in assistance to the homeless and to discuss them.

The first part of the symposium will provide indicative insights for the matter. In 5 talks, the collective accommodation will be examined, based on the situation for Refugees and the asylum policies‘ answers on the European, German federal and regional level, as a consequence of specific marginalization and control policies against Refugees. Furthermore the systematic deprivations of rights of Refugees within the practice of housing in Germany will be analyzed from a power critical perspective. New developments in the field of social work will be taken into consideration and by introducing the concept housing first a starting point will be set for a substantiated discussion about it. Ultimately the „Welcoming Culture“ for Refugees will be debated as a proving ground for future solidary urban development.

In the second part of the symposium workshops led by activists with and without refugee experiences and researchers will deepen this first insights. Here, the workshop attendees will get to the bottom of possible societal reorientation beyond contemporary mental stereotyped blockades and narrowing of perspectives. In exchange with activists with and without refugee experiences, researchers and actors in the housing markets, the attendees will negotiate aspects of societal participation and the (im-)possibility of solidary and participatory urban development along the question about self-determined living.

Preparatory committee: Intiativkreis:Menschen.Würdig, Kulturbüro Sachsen, e.V