August 21, 2021
How Does COVID-19 infodemic influence the migration process and target migrants?
By trivial chapter| Immigration Visa
COVID-19 pandemic is without a doubt one of the most challenging perils faced by humankind in the last hundred years. The only events that even came close to the impact the COVID-19 had and continue to have on humanity were two world wars and the straining relations of the US and USSR at the height of the Cold War. This unchecked spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has created a health disaster that has left millions dead across the globe.
The Rise of Coronavirus
But this astronomically high count of the number of dead is not the only impact of the COVID-19. It impacted various aspects in the international community. It has unleashed a dark side of humanity as well. In the face of unclarity on who is responsible for the unleashing of this virus, or whether or not someone is responsible, as it is entirely possible that COVID-19 is a naturally occurred virus, people have started looking for someone to blame. Since this virus was first detected in Wuhan, China, the Asian community has become the most targeted group in Europe and across the Americas.
We see a significant uptick in the hate crime committed on Asian immigrants. Not only are hate crimes against the minority groups up across Europe and the Americas, but COVID-19 virus also ravages many such groups. And it is not hard to understand why that is the case. Segregated communities in Europe and poor infrastructure in such communities lead to a rapid rise in the Coronavirus cases. This also fuels the xenophobic attributes against them. Such communities are at greater risk in this pandemic as they are more likely to avoid crucial medical care because of such attitudes by the public. This is a vicious cycle that can only be reformed by the local and state government. But sadly, that is not what is happening in Europe and across the world.
Governments in such regions are adopting xenophobic policies restricting migration from the non-European areas that especially hit hard by this virus. This high level of disinformation campaign has forced the UN to label this pandemic as an infodemic – a portmanteau of ‘information and ‘epidemic’. The intentional misleading statements made by people in a position of power and disinformation about the spread of COVID-19 and vaccine have forced the UN to label this COVID-19 pandemic as an infodemic.
Stronger measures to curb this infodemic
Debates over immigration have always been susceptible to misinterpretation and then used to fuel anti-immigration fervour. This pandemic has only worsened this situation. Many countries, whose population influenced by this infodemic, adopted anti-immigration policies.
What helps to tackle such a situation?
Tackling misinformation indeed sounds like a difficult task. As a rumour spread like a wildfire, a truth takes a longer, slower path. This is why local governments and NGOs have to step up their efforts to tackle such misinformation. They need to take strict action against hate crimes committed against minority groups as well. There are several loopholes in the hate crimes law in several countries that need to be tackled. Tougher punishments are required for such atrocities committed by anyone. Immigrants applying for work permits need to be provided with the same protection. This is because the citizens of that country, and the embassies need to be more involved with the cases of hate crimes that happen in a foreign country.
Tech companies also need to play a more active role in rooting out fake claims, conspiracies and rumours. The good news is that many tech giants have started to involve in curbing disinformation. Although they are pretty late in responding to this hateful vitriol spread on their platform. But, it’s better late than never. EU institutions are also trying to dispel rumours that have been spread about the Coronavirus and condemning statements that target a specific group for the spread of COVID-19 in a region. Similarly, rumours about asylum seekers are being dispelled about such institutions as well. Many campaigns are there to make people aware of the fact that every asylum seeker. Vaccination is important for the worker that enters the region during COVID-19.
Immigration to Europe from India
Indian nationals who are looking to immigrate to Europe should make sure whether or not there have been any law changes in the country they are looking to immigrate to in the past few months influenced by the infodemic. Trivial Chapter is India’s leading expert in helping people out who are looking to immigrate to Europe. With Trivial Chapter, one can expedite their visa-approval process. They can also get the latest info about the immigration policies of a specific country.