Migration a Broad and Historical Topic with a Global Scope

by Martha B. Baird Ph.D., CNS, CTN-A, FTNSS

Migration is a broad and historical topic with a global scope of concern to all of our members. The UNHCR (2022) reported more than 100 million persons are displaced worldwide in 2023 (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), 2022). It is no secret that the dehumanizing rhetoric and hyperbole about migrants and asylum seekers heralds back to the World War 2 era. How can and should the TCNS respond to this?

The mission of the Transcultural Nursing Society (TCNS) is to enhance the quality of culturally congruent, competent, and equitable care that results in improved health and well-being for people worldwide. How can we achieve this? As advocates of culturally relevant care what can we do to improve health of the vulnerable worldwide?

As a board member of a refugee resettlement organization in the Midwest USA, I have had the opportunity to be very close to this issue. Our mission at Jewish Vocational Service (JVS) is driven by, Tikkun olam (the Hebrew, ‘To save or repair the world’), or the pursuit of social justice. Tikkun olam is based on the idea that "Jews bear responsibility not only for their own moral, spiritual, and material welfare, but also for the welfare of society at large". Don’t we, as nurses, also feel this responsibility? Our concerns with human suffering should mobilize us to act globally to address the challenges associated with forced human migration.

Several TCNS scholars representing different countries have suggested creating a Special Interest Group (SIG) about the challenges of migration. This would provide a space for those of us who are currently addressing the migration crisis to share ideas, solutions, and build support for advocacy in our respective countries and areas of practice.

I would like to engage TCNS members in conversation about ways we can unite across nations and organizations to address the human crises driven by violence, poverty, persecution, and a desire to foster the health and well-being of the next generation. I am attaching a document by Lutheran Immigration Services (LIRS) titled, Asylum: Key Messages and Talking Points (May 10, 2023) to address this challenge.

Download Lutheran Immigration Services (LIRS) titled, Asylum: Key Messages and Talking Points

To all my fellow TCNS members, Tikkun olam. Let’s try to save the world.

Martha B. Baird Ph.D., CNS, CTN-A, FTNSS
Director-elect TCNS Scholars Group
Board President Jewish Vocational Service (JVS)