Migranda and Trama di Terre published this call on November 25, 2011, the international day against violence on women, to free a woman from Senegal who called the police after a very hard aggression by her former partner, but was not even able to denounce him because she is illegalised.
Her condition is shared by thousands women because of the Italian immigration law and the detention centers, so that to oppose violence against women means also to say no to that law and these centers. The effect of the call was really unexpected. In 24 hours more than 500 singned this call. All the institutions of the city of Bologna have been forced to take a position to sustain the immediate freedom of this woman. Even the Ministry of Interiors said that something must be done, and a wider public debate started concerning the Bossi-Fini Law and detention centers.
Adama: one story, many violences
Adama is a woman and a migrant. As we write, Adama is imprisoned in the CIE (Detention center for migrants) of Bologna. She has been imprisoned there since the 26th of august, when she called the Carabinieri of Forlì after having been robbed, beaten, raped and had her throat injured with a knife by her ex-partner. The institutions responded to her request for help with the form of imprisonment reserved for migrants without regular residency papers. Her story was indifferent to them. Her story - which tells of a double violence, which she was subjected to as a woman and as a migrant - is very important to us.
According to the Bossi-Fini immigration law Adama came to Italy in an illegal manner. For us she came to Italy in a courageous manner, to give her children who remained in Senegal a better future. She found a job and a house through the same man, who initially helped and protected her, becoming her partner, but subsequently became her tormentor. A man who ably used the Bossi-Fini law for the purposes of blackmail. For four years, this man threatened to report Adama to the authorities and have her deported if she did not follow his every command. For four years he robbed her of part of her salary, using her illegal alien status as a weapon of his power over her.
When Adama had to seek the assistance of law enforcement authorities the only response was imprisonment in the black hole of a detention center where she could still have to remain for months. On the 16th of September Adama's lawyer presented an official request to enter the detention center, accompanied by doctors and an interpreter, in order to verify her health conditions and formally take down her statement regarding the violence she was submitted to. Only on the 25th of October the Bologna prefecture authorized the entry of the doctors and interpreter to the detention center. More than a month had gone by before Adama could formally accuse her aggressor, and we do not know how long it will be before she can be released from custody.
We know, however, that every day of custody is one too many. We know that the violence that Adama has been submitted to, as a woman and as a migrant, affects all women and therefore it is not possible let her be detained one moment more. The CIE is just the most brutal expression of a law, the Bossi-Fini law, that imposes silence and transforms brave women into powerless victims.
We women cannot be silent as Adama fights her battle. For this we are calling on all collectives, associations and institutions to demand her immediate liberation from the CIE and her being granted legal residency to permit her to take back control of her life.
Associazione Trama di Terre
To sign the petition write to migranda2011 (at) gmail.com
Update 03. Dec 2011: Adama is free!
On Wednesday the 30 of November a migrant woman came out of the detention center of Bologna, after having been imprisoned without any guilt, as thousands migrants in all the other Italian and European detention centers. However we can say now: Adama is free! We have been able to embrace and bring in a safe place a woman who experienced male violence first, and institutional violence then. Adama is free! Her bravery and the collective protest of thousands women and men, and the support of hundreds associations, made possible what was impossible till that moment. Adama is free! The fresh and rushing breeze of our revolt opened the doors of that nseless and brutal place called detention center. There will be time for other words in the next days. What does matter now is that Adama is free, and she is able to take her freedom back.
Source Information sent by e-mail and english call from :: migranda.org, 25. Nov 2011. You can find the italian version wiht the list of subscriptions :: here and all the words sent by the subscribers (in italian language) :: here. They show different political views and cultures, but in all of them a strong solidarity and opposition to the current immigration system is expressed.