On 19th July 2022, while the university celebrated graduation, Dr Niroshan Ramachandran (Lecturer in Criminology and member of the Migration Working Group – North West at Edge Hill University) in collaboration with Han Dayea Catahan from Micro Rainbow organised the LGBTIQ+ Asylum Seekers and Refugees Networking/Allyship at the Everyman Theatre in Liverpool.
This event was funded by the Institute for Social Responsibility. This event brought together LGBTQI+ asylum seekers and refugees, third sector organisations and state agencies for an open space for listening, coming together and learning. This event’s attendees included members of the Life Rooms, Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust, Liverpool City Council, City Hearts, Sahir House, Polish Migrant Organisation, Micro Rainbow and Edge Hill University. This event was organised as a platform for networking and therefore, all attendees had time and opportunities to meet and talk to each other.
During this event, it has been emphasised that the [UK asylum system] restricts LGBTQI+ asylum seekers and refugees’ capacity to integrate into their communities, fosters negative discourses, reinforces existing negative labels and categories, and hinders their access to social protection. The successful completion of this event was the first step towards expanding Edge Hill’s collaboration with the community and allyship for LGBTQI+ asylum seekers and refugees.