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Refugees, fairness and taking up the slack: On justice and the International Refugee Regime

Refugees, fairness and taking up the slack: On justice and the International Refugee Regime
Refugees, fairness and taking up the slack: On justice and the International Refugee Regime
The central topic addressed in this essay is the relationship of duties of justice towards refugees and the distribution of responsibility for the protection of refugees (with particular focus on the questions of whether doing one’s fair share of refugee protection entails that one has done all that is required to discharge one’s duty of justice towards refugees). I address this topic in relation to the institutional context of the current international refugee regime. The first part of the essay lays out the normatively salient features of the current refugee regime and the relationship between duties of justice to refugees and the fair distribution of refugee protection that it institutes. In the course of this discussion, I draw particular attention to the fact that it is an important feature of the current refugee regime that it does not limit the duty to protect refugees to doing one’s fair share of refugee protection. The second part of the essay considers whether this feature of the refugee regime is justifiable by addressing arguments concerning whether duties of justice are limited to doing one’s fair share of refugee protection. In particular, this section addresses the argument proposed by David Miller that there is no duty of justice to take up the slack that is produced by the non-compliance of other actors. It argues that Miller’s argument is invalid and that duties of justice towards refugees may require doing more than one’s fair share, but also that there is an obligation to seek the fairest arrangements compatible with effective refugee protection. In the final section, I consider the significance and difficulties of the issue of a fair distribution of refugee protection for the contemporary refugee regime.
refugees, justice, fairness, responsibility, protection
2194-5616
141-164
Owen, David
9fc71bca-07d1-44af-9248-1b9545265a58
Owen, David
9fc71bca-07d1-44af-9248-1b9545265a58

Owen, David (2016) Refugees, fairness and taking up the slack: On justice and the International Refugee Regime. Moral Philosophy and Politics, 3 (2), 141-164. (doi:10.1515/mopp-2016-0001).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The central topic addressed in this essay is the relationship of duties of justice towards refugees and the distribution of responsibility for the protection of refugees (with particular focus on the questions of whether doing one’s fair share of refugee protection entails that one has done all that is required to discharge one’s duty of justice towards refugees). I address this topic in relation to the institutional context of the current international refugee regime. The first part of the essay lays out the normatively salient features of the current refugee regime and the relationship between duties of justice to refugees and the fair distribution of refugee protection that it institutes. In the course of this discussion, I draw particular attention to the fact that it is an important feature of the current refugee regime that it does not limit the duty to protect refugees to doing one’s fair share of refugee protection. The second part of the essay considers whether this feature of the refugee regime is justifiable by addressing arguments concerning whether duties of justice are limited to doing one’s fair share of refugee protection. In particular, this section addresses the argument proposed by David Miller that there is no duty of justice to take up the slack that is produced by the non-compliance of other actors. It argues that Miller’s argument is invalid and that duties of justice towards refugees may require doing more than one’s fair share, but also that there is an obligation to seek the fairest arrangements compatible with effective refugee protection. In the final section, I consider the significance and difficulties of the issue of a fair distribution of refugee protection for the contemporary refugee regime.

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Refugees, Fairness and Taking Up Slack (final) - Accepted Manuscript
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Accepted/In Press date: 31 August 2016
e-pub ahead of print date: 29 September 2016
Published date: November 2016
Keywords: refugees, justice, fairness, responsibility, protection
Organisations: Politics & International Relations

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 406287
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/406287
ISSN: 2194-5616
PURE UUID: a2cffd13-7b17-4915-8ab1-b09e9fc57b94
ORCID for David Owen: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-8865-6332

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Date deposited: 10 Mar 2017 10:44
Last modified: 23 Jul 2022 04:13

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