The Statelessness Network Asia Pacific (SNAP) is a civil society network with the goal of promoting collaboration and information sharing on addressing statelessness in Asia and the Pacific.
A stateless person is not recognised as a citizen by any State.
As a result, stateless people often have limited or no access to fundamental human rights such as education, employment, housing, and health services, and are often unable to pay taxes, buy and sell property, open a bank account or register a birth, marriage or death.
Stateless people are also at a heightened risk of exploitation, human trafficking, arrest and arbitrary detention because they often have difficulty proving who they are or links to a country of origin.
Worldwide, there are at least ten million stateless people.
In Asia and the Pacific, the main causes of statelessness are gaps in nationality laws and policies and practices that discriminate on the basis of gender, ethnicity and/or religion.
RATIONALE FOR SNAP
Civil society actors are in a unique position to respond to the challenge of statelessness in Asia and the Pacific through civil society’s existing direct engagement with stateless populations and decision makers. In fact, there are many examples across the region where civil society actors, in collaboration with governmental actors and UN agencies, have successfully addressed statelessness for specific populations.
However, before SNAP's launch there was limited collaboration and information sharing between civil society actors on lessons learned and strategies used to address statelessness. Therefore, SNAP aims to bridge this gap. Collaboration and exchange between civil society actors will enhance individual actors’ impact and create opportunities for collective action.