Archive for September, 2015

For a Thousand Lives

10th September 2015 by Maura McHugh

For a Thousand Lives: Be Human is a petition created by Nathalie Borgers (Austrian filmmaker) & Ursula Wolschlager (Belgian documentary filmmaker) as an appeal from European Film Professionals to Governments and to the EU to to take immediate action in relation to the current refugee crisis.

Every day, people fleeing war, terror, political persecution and misery are drowning in the sea, suffocating in the back of a truck or tumbling to their death in ports or train stations in their desperate attempts to reach Europe. According to Amnesty International, more than 23.000 people have lost their lives that way since 2000.

To make matters worse, those who reach Europe often find themselves in degrading living conditions and are subjected to inhumane treatment. The EU is spending up to twenty times more money on border control, than on welcoming centres for refugees.

The past tragedies have already led to a change in attitude for many people as can be witnessed in countless acts of personal compassion as well as public demonstrations of solidarity. Sadly, most official politicians seem to be all too slow in accepting the existence of a humanitarian crisis and finding life-sustaining solutions.

This petition is on part of the European film industry to remind the European Union that it was founded “on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities (…) in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.” (Article 2, Treaty on European Union 2008)

If you agree with these sentiments, please add your signature to the 3,500 European film professionals who have already signed the For a Thousand lives online petition, which you can sign here.