Anwaltschaft für sozial Benachteiligte
Luca da Campo

Equal rights for all

Advocacy for asylum seekers and the socially disadvantaged

Central to the activities of HEKS/EPER are asylum seekers and refugees, sans-papiers (undocumented persons) as well as people on low incomes and those facing discrimination. They are all particularly at risk of seeing their rights violated or of social exclusion. HEKS/EPER advocates on behalf of these people and strives to support them in exercising their rights and improving their lot.

Advocacy for asylum seekers and the socially disadvantaged

HEKS/EPER strives to obtain Switzerland's protection for people who, upon returning to their home country or to a third country would be endangered, be it for medical reasons or due to violence and war, lacking social welfare facilities or direct persecution. With funding from Cantonal Reformed and Catholic Churches, HEKS/EPER operates seven legal aid offices for asylum seekers and refugees. The legal experts involved are committed to ensuring a fair asylum procedure guided by the rule of law. They strive to find and implement the best solution for each asylum seeker. This safeguards their rights under federal and international law. HEKS/EPER also supports socially disadvantaged, jobless or social welfare-dependent people with pro bono legal advice, covering the main areas of legislation on social insurance, social welfare, children and guardianship and on aliens.

Anwaltschaft für Asylbewerber und sozial Benachteiligte
Annette Boutellier

Commitment to sans-papiers

The sans-papiers live in Switzerland without legal residency status. To secure their existence and that of their family in Switzerland and in their country of origin, they are forced to work under conditions that are precarious from a legal, economic and social standpoint. HEKS/EPER works actively to ensure that international human rights standards also apply to sans-papiers, that their legal entitlements under domestic laws are respected and that they are protected against discrimination.

Engagement für Sans-Papiers
Luca da Campo

Social engagement and publicity

Over and above supporting individuals, HEKS/EPER's social engagement aims to make the concerns of the socially disadvantaged better known in the political, economic and social realms. HEKS/EPER closely monitors social policy trends in Switzerland, paying special attention to policies on asylum and aliens, migration and integration as well as protection from discrimination. HEKS/EPER also participates in networks in order to communicate its message more effectively.

Gesellschaftspolitisches Engagement und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit
Sabine Buri

Project examples

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