Research Seminar in Sociology of Law with Hanna Scott
The Sociology of Law Department arranges a series of research seminars inviting both local and international researchers who are conducting state of the art research within various areas of law and society.
“No one can help me, only my friends can”: young people navigating victim protection at the intersection(s) of migration, social welfare and criminal law
Through the stories of three young men who fled to Sweden, Omid, Hussein and Akram, who have subsequently sought to engage the law as victims of crime, this article examines their search for protection at the intersections of criminal justice and the increasingly restrictive legal frameworks for migration and social welfare in Sweden.
People seeking asylum face many different forms of violence, yet little is known about how they seek protection from violence in its criminalised forms. Drawing on the concept of interlegality (Santos 1987), this article examines how victim protection for this category of crime victims is (re)configured by “adjacent laws” (Adamsson, Menjivar and Drysdale-Walsh 2020). The article argues that victim protection for people seeking asylum can neither be understood nor improved unless considered in relation to how these different legal orders bleed into each other to produce a complex maze of rules. In order to navigate this maze, people seeking asylum who try to enter the criminal justice system as victims of crime must mobilise law with the help of friends and allies. Their navigations of the law follow no clear forward trajectory, but weave in and out of (in)formality and, at best, provide temporary suspension of precarious living.
Hanna is a PhD student at the department of welfare law at the University of Linköping. She has an LLM in Human Rights Law from Birkbeck College, University of London, England and has a background as a lawyer working with children and young people in Sweden and in the UK. Hanna's research project examines lived experiences of violence and navigations of in/formal protection at the intersection(s) of laws among young people who sought refuge in Sweden. The project is funded by the Swedish Victim Support Agency.