International Migrants Day

In no particular order, I am proud to call myself:

  • Immigrant
  • Migrant
  • Polish
  • European national
  • Global citizen
  • Citizen of the world
  • Resident of Welwyn Garden City

Each year, on the 18th December, we celebrate the International Migrants Day. A day like many others. However, it is a day which gives us an opportunity to recognise our contribution, reflect on our achievements and celebrate our uniqueness.

The International Migrants Day is a day when we can be truly proud of our own heritage, culture, upbringing, religious or ethnic background. Our faith affiliation, colour of our skin or country of our origin are only part of our story. It is our personal experiences and journey through life, which can help us to become better human beings, and which make us who we are.

We all “move around” for a number of different reasons; to better our lives, seek opportunities to work or study, or flee war of prosecution. We enhance our communities. We enrich our neighbourhoods. Life is at times challenging, hard and demanding. However, it has also plenty of happy and fulfilling moments. I believe that migration is strongly embedded in our DNA. Let’s not forget that we all have layers of identify and being a migrant is only one of them.

Maybe the health pandemic and another very turbulent year is a good moment to stop and reflect on how we treat each other and other people? Is this a good moment to be less judgmental and more open-minded? Let’s continue doing our little part to ensure that the world fosters a welcoming environment to all. Let’s recognise that we are members of the same global family.

It is time to celebrate! Happy International Migrants Day!

* Michal Siewniak is a Lib Dem activist and councillor for Handside ward, Welwyn Hatfield.

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3 Comments

  • Interesting article, thanks Michal.

    I’m curious about one thing: You list lots of things that you are proud to call yourself, including ‘global citizen’ and ‘european national’ but you don’t include in that list anything about the UK, other than being a resident of Welwyn Garden City. I wonder if you feel able to say anything about that omission? I’m curious – not trying to be hostile – but to my mind it seems a strange omission considering that you’ve been a local councillor in the UK and it looks like you’re writing as a member of a political party that aspires to govern the UK.

  • Suzanne Fletcher 19th Dec '21 - 4:54pm

    I can only agree with all of this.
    A welcome and open mind cost nothing, are valuable, but just not enough of them.

  • Peter Hirst 20th Dec '21 - 2:02pm

    Migration serves to enrich all our experiences by exposing us to different cultures. If every country had half its inhabitants from outside its borders we would have a safer, happier and more stable world. It is also important to allow and ecourage those immigrants to mix with the indiginous population so that true integration and the positive consequences of it can occur.

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