Governing Through Ignorance : Swedish Authorities’ Treatment of Detained and Non-deported Migrants during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Summary, in English
Tensions between migration enforcement and migrants’ health and rights have gained renewed urgency during the COVID-19 pandemic. This article critically analyses how the pandemic has affected detained and deportable people in Sweden. Building on an activist methodological approach and collaboration, based on a survey conducted inside Swedish detention centres during the pandemic and the authors’ research and activist engagement with migrants who are detained or legally stranded in Sweden, we argue that migration authorities’ inadequate measures to protect detained and deportable people during the pandemic is a case of governance through ignorance enabled by structural racism. The article traces how this ignorance operates on a structural, institutional and micro-level, enabling public disregard and political irresponsibility for the harmful effects of migration enforcement. A broader aim of the article is to challenge the structural, societal and epistemic ignorance of the conditions for detained and deportable persons and to contribute to political change.
- International Migration and Ethnic Relations
- Migration-related detention
- ISSN: 0966-3622