Laura McDowell and Teodosia Dos Reis join domestic workers in Timor Leste as they march for their rights, Adam Bemma talks to political groups in Thailand trying to decentralise politics from the capital of Bangkok, Quinn Libson interviews researchers highlighting Facebook’s struggles with the Khmer language, and James Rose reflects on the weaponisation of the word “Rohingya” in Myanmar.
Thousands of refugees have fled to Thai cities such as Bangkok in the hopes of temporary sanctuary while waiting to be resettled elsewhere. But a crackdown on overstayers has led to hundreds of detentions, with refugees having to deal with new worries about their future.
The rhetoric surrounding refugees is today often framed as matters of border security, illegal movement, or burdens on welfare systems. Visiting the camp where she was born, Xuyen Nguyen reflects on her family’s journey and the choices refugees have been pushed to make.
Conservative anti-abortion beliefs are commonplace in Thailand and planted into the minds of Thai women from a young age. The stigma around abortion throws up barriers to access for those who need it, and exacts a psychological toll on those who opt for it.
Thailand recently launched a crackdown on undocumented workers in an effort to combat trafficking, but the lack of a victim-centric approach means that new measures are likely making things worse for vulnerable migrant workers.