By The Nation
The five-minute video, part of the United Nations agency’s “Fight Unfairness” campaign, carries the hashtag #AChildIsAChild and is posted at facebook.com/unicefthailand/videos/10155114451089632/ and www.unicef.or.th/achildisachild.
It urges viewers to overlook such children’s migrant status and recognise them as children as worthy of equal opportunities in life as any everyone else.
In the video, three cheerful Thai youngsters are asked whether they go to school on weekdays and what they do when they feel ill. They’re then told to ask their migrant friends the same questions, encountering very different answers.
The Thai children come to the conclusion that all children should have the same basic rights and life opportunities.
“Children are children, no matter who they are or where they come from, whether they are migrant, refugee, stateless or disabled,” Unicef representative for Thailand Thomas Davin said.
“They should get to see a doctor when they’re sick and to go to school and graduate like other kids. All children need love, attention, protection and equal opportunities to fulfil their dreams when they grow up.”
Although migrant children are assured access to basic services in Thai law, they in fact often face obstacles in doing so.
They might suffer from a social stigma and discrimination, have insufficient money to pay for services, be wary of contact with state officials, or simply not know what services are available to them, Davin said.
“Friends of Unicef” celebrities supporting the campaign include Davika “Mai” Hoorne, Vanessa “Noodi” Race, Kiatisuk “Zico” Senamuang, Tachaya “Keng The Voice” Pathumwan and Chakkawal Saothongyuthitham.