2019/03/29 Malee Sunpuwan-Perceptions of Thais Towards Refugees and Migrants from Myanmar
Title：Perceptions of Thais Towards Refugees and Migrants from Myanmar
Venue：Room 106A, HA2 Bldg, NCTU
Speaker：Malee Sunpuwan (Assistant Professor, Institute for Population and Social Research, Mahidol University, Thailand)
Thailand has been a destination for refugees, displaced persons, and migrant workers for three decades. There are hundred thousands of refugees living in 9 camps located along the border and about 10,000 living in urban settings. It is also estimated that about 4 million migrants are legally and illegally staying in Thailand. Survey of Thai public opinion towards refugees and migrant workers from Myanmar conducted in four provinces on the Thailand-Myanmar border showed that the public was highly concerned with security issues and that the majority of the Thais surveyed believe that refugees and migrant workers posed a threat to public safety and might carry diseases. Respondents also saw refugees and migrants as competing for jobs and national resources with native Thais. Those who lived closer to the refugee camps, who are rural residents, generally had more positive views of migrants and refugees than those in urban areas located farther from the camps. These results will be discussed in terms of what perspectives that would help to dispel misperceptions and improve the integration of refugees and migrants into Thai society.