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Accepted Paper:

Mobility in a time of confinement: Lockdown as a Refugee Woman in Northern Ireland  
Amanda Lubit (Dublin City University)

Paper short abstract:

Lockdown was a time of immobility and confinement, with individual movements restricted. Existing limitations on asylum-seeking and refugee women's mobility worsened yet they found empowerment through new forms of mobility using digital technologies.

Paper long abstract:

The lockdown greatly restricted individual movement of refugee and asylum-seeking women living in Belfast. The mobility of this population was already greatly restricted due to lack of rights, finances, and access afforded due to their precarious legal status. The pandemic exacerbated these inequities, leaving women without access to basic needs such as food banks, support organisations, and donations of necessities like baby supplies and clothing. Not only were women unable to leave their homes, but many also lacked the ability to connect with others digitally due to a lack of internet, Wi-Fi, devices or any way to securing these. A local organisation created by and for these women worked to address these needs, adapting their services to the rapidly changing situation the pandemic created. Not only did they secure devices and internet services for their members, but they also developed new ways of connecting women.

At the same time as lockdown limited women's mobility, it also created new opportunities for online mobility that some women found empowering. I contrast the immobility of lockdown with the mobility women discovered online by creating online meetings using Zoom to share in activities such as cooking, yoga, and gardening. These activities involved movement within one's home being shared through the use of technology, broadening opportunities and participation for many.

Panel P010a
Navigating hurdles and pacing (im)mobilities in times of corona [AnthroMob Network] I
  Session 1 Wednesday 27 July, 2022, -