Agenda

WE’RE DOING IT

We want to amplify the public voices of those for whom migration is not a threat. That’s the only way we can help make Germany a country where people need not fear being different.

We’re doing what makes sense.

We’re creating participation. Opening up participation enables people to contribute to our society; excluding them is inacceptable, ethically and politically – and also causes high social and economic costs. We’re creating a life side by side on an equal footing, together with the people coming to us.

We’re doing what’s realistic.

We’re finding a realistic and pragmatic approach to migration, which faces up to the challenges and understands migration as an opportunity for our society.

We’re doing what’s obvious right now.

We’re helping where help is needed. We’re doing it to lessen people’s suffering right now and to open up long-term perspectives. We refuse to accept the obstacles placed in our way by the state or the legislators.

We’re doing it to show what’s possible.

We’re determined to cope with all the tasks ahead of us. We are individuals, civil society initiatives, companies and organizations.

We’re doing it for an open, democratic society.

It is time to find a realistic approach to migration. Migration is an unavoidable aspect of a world based on interwoven politics and economies. What we need to do is harness the diverse potential of migration instead of constantly reinforcing fears of possible risks and threats. Over the past few months, Germany has proved that this is possible. Countless civil society initiatives have tackled a wide range of challenges in short-term and long-term projects. Large parts of civil society, from individuals to neighbourhood initiatives, religious communities to the Chambers of Industry and Commerce and universities, are well ahead of their political representatives on the subject. Be it the urgent provision of food, clothing and accommodation, be it initial medical care, legal advice or more long-term perspectives such as integration into schools, universities and the labour market, training programmes, cultural life or neighbourly relations: a diverse spectrum of initiatives and projects have showed what is possible.

The policy of deterrence based on closing Europe’s borders has failed. This isolation policy prompts huge economic costs. It fosters violence and criminality. It intensifies social tensions and results in high social costs. Experiences with legalized migration processes show that the majority of problems associated with migration are due to its criminalization rather than migration itself. The European closed-border policy has also cost too many human lives. It is ethically intolerable.

There are two things at stake. The short-term aim is the immediate provision of essentials, but also demonstrating practical integration possibilities, particularly with regard to housing, work and training. In the long term, the aim is to show the possibilities and potentials of an immigration society, a society that does present challenges but does not present a threat.