Access to Citizenship and Mobility Traps in Thailand
The project aims to deliver a comprehensive analysis of the situation of the lack of legal status among some two millions people in Thailand. Due to the changes in citizenship policies and regulations during different political and social contexts, successive Thai authorities have differently categorized people in this country into Thai citizen with official ID card, and several categories of non-Thai citizen aliens. These alien cards condition the beholders’ access to various fundamental rights (for example, access to land titles, voting rights, and education and health care services). Such a categorization is responsible for the existence of many people without any legal status in Thailand especially among the highland ethnic minorities in the borderareas.In order to collect information for our project, we have conducted both archival and fieldwork researches. We have analyzedpolicy documents as well as reports of right activists and non-governmental organizations. We have interviewed affected villagers, local government officials, legal specialists, rights activists and NGO workers. These information gatherings have provided us with contrastive viewpoints on current regulations and their impacts on local livelihoods. In addition, we have observed several workshops whereby affected villagers and NGO workers prepared documents to be handled to local officials.