No, this is not a list of criminals and rapists; these are suffering people, and they are members of my own family. It’s easy to forget that the terms listed below are abstract descriptions of real human lives, lives filled with disruption, chaos, grief, pain, separation and loss. Lives as valuable as my own.
Even the term “planned relocation” is a term filled with pain and suffering. Imagine yourself as part of a planned relocation project – with no insurance and no moving company!
Each of the terms in the following list can serve as an object of meditation, for each term implies an immense amount of human suffering. If nothing else, it may help us understand the complexity of human dislocation and mobility, and better appreciate what the future holds for the planet – a future that predicts, over the next 30 years, as many as 250 million people will be displaced by climate related factors. The list is derived from Groundswell: Preparing for Internal Climate Migration.
migrant/migration: Climate migrants are people who move within
countries because of climate change-induced migration.
Forced removal of people or people obliged to flee from their places
of habitual residence.
migration: Movements from the usual place of residence,
undertaken when an individual and/or their family perceive that there
are no options open to them to survive with dignity, except to
migrate. This may be a result of a rapid-onset climate event, other
disasters, or conflict event, or a succession of such events, that
result in the loss of assets and coping capacities.
mobility: Temporary or permanent mobility as a result of sudden
or progressive changes in the environment that adversely affect
living conditions, either within countries or across borders.
migration: Migratory movement in which an element of coercion
exists, including threats to life and livelihood, whether arising
from natural or man-made causes (for example, movements of refugees
and internally displaced persons as well as people displaced by
natural or environmental disasters, chemical or nuclear disasters,
famine, or development projects). Forced migration generally implies
a lack of volition concerning the decision to move, though in reality
motives may be mixed, and the decision to move may include some
degree of personal agency or volition.
Inability to move from a place of risk or not moving away from a
place of risk due to choice.
migration (migrant): Internal migration is migration that occurs
within national borders.
migration (migrant): Migration that occurs across national
mobility: The geographical and occupational movement of workers.
Migration: Movement that requires a change in the place of usual residence and that is longer term. In
demographic research and official statistics, it involves crossing a
recognized political/administrative border.
Mobility: Movement of people, including temporary or long-term, short- or long-distance, voluntary or forced, and seasonal or permanent movement as well as planned relocation (see also environmental mobility,
relocation: People moved or assisted to move permanently away
from areas of environmental risks.