Take Action Around 'Special Flight'
Review legislation related to asylum and detention of undocumented immigrants to determine whether or not existing laws and policies reflect your beliefs. If not, check with local, national or international human rights organizations to see how you can support efforts to improve policies.
Provide a public but safe opportunity for asylum seekers or undocumented workers and their families to tell their stories. During the event, distribute handouts with accurate information about immigrants and immigration policy.
Start a dialogue with officials responsible for operating detention centers and suggest they show Special Flight as part of their staff training.
Get informed about the issues in the film and lead a discussion in your community.
Special Flight is a dramatic account of the plight of undocumented foreigners at the Frambois detention center in Geneva, Switzerland, and of the wardens who struggle to reconcile humane values with the harsh realities of a strict deportation system. The 25 Frambois inmates featured are among the thousands of asylum seekers and undocumented immigrants imprisoned without charge or trial and facing deportation to their native countries, where they fear repression or even death. The film, made in Switzerland, is a heart-wrenching exposé of the contradictions between the country’s compassionate social policies and the intractability of its immigration laws.
In this lesson, students will create short pieces of reality-based fiction. The main character will be an undocumented immigrant awaiting deportation from Switzerland, a country that prides itself on being a leader in human rights but whose deportation process has resulted directly in the deaths of several men.
This list of fiction and nonfiction books, compiled by Rachael Weyand of Portland Public Library provides a range of perspectives on the issues raised by the POV documentary Special Flight.