The ‘Marrakech Compact’ was adopted December 2018 – Reflection by Donatus Lili

You may well ask what is the ‘Marrakech Compact’? It is the new name for the Global Compact for Safe Orderly and Regular Migration adopted in Marrakesh, Morocco on 10 and 11 December, 2018 and again adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 19 December, 2018 following a vote.

donatusThe Congregation was represented by Cecilie Kern, (right) from the GSIJP Office in New York, and myself Donatus Lili, the NGO Regional Designate for RIMOA.

The conference was preceded by side events organized by Civil Society Organizations and  Member States in conjunction with the United Nations. I attended 3 side events at Palmeraie Golf Palace in Marrakech, the official  venue for the adoption of the Global Compact on Migration. (GCM)

In the open discussion following one of the panels, I asked the representative of the donatus 2government of Sri Lanka, what recommendations he would make to governments in the Middle East on developing effective policies and measures to protect migrants’ rights with regard to religious tolerance as persons of African origin have been denied right to practice religion and obliged to wear the Muslim attire.  Further some women domestic workers are subjected to sexual exploitation by employers, endure  harsh working conditions, and only receive minimal salaries.

The response indicated that countries of origin need to teach migrants about their rights, in particular with regard to salaries and ensure that they know how to get help if needed during transits, or in the destination country.

The two days intergovernmental conference consisted of  statements by countries in support of the Global Compact on Migration and two dialogues (i) Promoting action on the commitments of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration and (ii) Partnerships and innovative initiatives for the way forward.

Of the 193 UN Member States, 164 were present in Marakesh for the  adoption the Compact. Members expressed dissatisfaction and stated that while the compact is non- binding it highlights the obligation of every member state to formulate strategies and policies towards facilitating safe, orderly and regular migration.  The compact is a framework, a blueprint.

His Excellency, Antonio Guterres, Secretary General of the UN, in his opening statement challenged some myths and false information concerning the Global Compact for Migration and highlighted the need for everyone on the move to obtain formal authorization and that human dignity and human rights must be respected and upheld irrespective of status   To deny this – to vilify any group of people – is the road to dehumanization and horror.  Societies are stronger, more resilient and enriched, not threatened, by diversity.  Every member, every group, must feel valued as such and simultaneously feel they belong to the society as a whole. This is the way to counter the current groundswell of racism and xenophobia.

donatus 4

Ms Ellen Johnson Sirleaf the former president of Liberia and Chair of the High-Level Panel on International Migration in Africa delivered a key note on December 11, 2018. I had the honor of meeting her after the session.

 

Some personal reflections on the experience:

The Global Compact for Migration (GCM) is extremely new to me. While I had done reading I found it difficult to understand. Through my participation in the side events and presence at the official adoption by UN Members states I have some more clarity.  I was confused when the Secretary General stated, “GCM is non –binding” meaning every state is free to adopt or not.   I would have preferred a binding treaty agreement. On the same note, a non-abiding agreement leaves each state free to develop measures and policies to fulfil the 23 objectives.

Attendance at the conference provided me with the opportunity to meet various NGO’s donatus 7who are engaged in migration policy and grassroots efforts.  Among these was Maria Pia Belloni, Chair, NGO Committee on Migration, in New York and UN Representative, World Organization for Early Childhood Education (OMEP)  See the NGO Committee Website for more information

My view on migration has changed.  I previously discouraged people from migrating but now I will ensure they have the correction information and migrate in a safe way using legal channels.  Statements that I heard indicated that a holistic approach to migration is necessary.  If there are well established frameworks it follows that the process works for all – including the migrant and the host country.

Follow the Women in Migration Network

Endorse-manifesto-2Women in Migration Network have a very informative website which may be of help to you as you follow the Intergovernmental Conference on Migration in Marrakesh to adopt the Global Compact on Safe, Regular and Orderly Migration.  There is one action that you can take – Endorses the Marrakesh women’s Rights Manifesto.  It is in a number of languages.  Click on this link for full details  Click on this link for full details   There are two ways to endorse the Manifesto – either individually or as an organization.

Read about the Global Compact on Migration from a Gender Perspective  HERE

 

Position Paper on Migration and the UN Global Compact on Migration …

Position-Slidshow-banner3As the updated Position Papers of the congregation are launched negotiations of the 5the week of the Global Compact on Migration have just finished – May 4 – 8, 2018Cecilie Profile

We must pay tribute to our excellent colleague and NGO Main Representative to the United Nations – Cecilie Kern – our migration expert – for keeping abreast of the negotiation, supporting in ever way possible the NGO Committee on Migration in their tracking and contributing  to the enhancement the negotiations to ensure the human rights of each and every migrant.  Her dedication and passion in this cause are unrivaled. Here is a Copy of the document start of negotiations on June 4.    Cecilia has provided an update on the current position as we moved into the week of June 4th negotiations. Read more here ETW GCM

 

The Papers are available in all three languages Spanish Documentos de Posición 2018  French Prises de Position 2018  and English Position Papers 2018

This work did not begin today or yesterday but has been ongoing since the year long negotiation leading up to the New York Declarations on Refugees and Migrants in September 2016 – a year after the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development including the Sustainable Development Goals.  The New York Declaration give rise to the work on the Global Compacts and here we are on the road to Morocco (10 and 11 December 2018) when the Global Compact will be adopted.  See More about the Conference  It will be preceded by the Global Forum on Migration which Good Shepherd have been engaged in over the years – with regresentatives coming from the Philippines, Malaysia and the GSIJPO in New York.

 

See New York Declaration on Refugees and Migrants   Available in Spanish and French.  What is in the position paper on Migration?

  1. Reference to the global situation today and the fact that the Global Compact on Migration is being negotiated.
  2. Why migration happens and what can happen in the process.
  3. Who is on the move today?
  4. Here is our main point of advocacy
  • all persons, regardless of migratory status are rights holders.’
  • protection of migrants is a moral imperative
  • upholding the integrity of the family 
  • ensuring the rights of the child and of spouses
  • avoid criminalization of the migrant 
  • implement human rights and labour rights 
  • no to xenophobia 

5.  Welcome the stranger – recognize and honor difference – listen – accompany – provide services

6.   Critical to responding

  •  cross border OLCGS projects – share with us in the comments box what you are doing.
  • know your local, national and regional reality
  • educate on human rights
  • be gender sensitive
  • focus on long term solutions
  • advocate – human rights, family unity,  no to detention of children, due process
  • address systems and structures that discriminate
  • seeks universal social protection floor policy
  • highlight the need for ‘protection’
  • oppose efforts to restrict migration
  • speak abut the failure to address political , social and economic inequalities

Be eager to see the final edition of the Global Compact on Migration which we expect after the 6th round of intergovernmental negotiation to be held in New York July 9th – 13th, 2018

Make links with the Sustainable Development Goals 3, 4, 5, 8, 11, 13, 16 and 17

Screen Shot 2017-09-15 at 8.40.24 AM

Document available in 6 UN Languages

The Mission of the Holy See to the UN hosted a side event on June 4 entitled ‘The Protection and Integration of Migrants in Vulnerable Situations.’   This could be a title for our position paper on Migration.  See   Goal:  “to facilitate a reflection and discussion on the main challenges and responses for the protection and integration of migrants in vulnerable situations, especially the selected target groups of women and girls, and families, and the selected target areas of health care and dignified work.”    Read the Holy See reflection on the side event Side Event

Prayer the prayer for June … a prayer for migrants and refugees.  English    Espanol  and Francais

 

 

 

2017 – Migration – human mobility -policies under review. ‘Now and How…’ work of 2018

In September 2016, for the first time Member States came together to discuss, at the global level, issues related to migration and refugees. The New York Declaration, which was adopted at the High-Level Summit, recognizes the need for a comprehensive approach to human mobility and enhanced cooperation at the global level and commits to:Screen Shot 2017-12-30 at 12.50.17 PM

The New York Declaration also launched two parallel processes for negotiations leading to an international conference and the adoption of a global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration and a global compact for responsibility sharing for refugees in 2018.

Screen Shot 2017-12-30 at 12.50.29 PM

Thanks to Cecilie Kern I have this great shot of the time line and  Good Shepherd Engagement in the Global Compact for Migration – the big issues addressed under the following headings: Human Rights, Drivers of Migration, International Cooperation, Contribution of Migrants, Smuggling and Trafficking, and Labour Mobility.

These process are intertwined within three session of the Global Forum of Migration – in Dhaka, Bangladesh, in Berlin, Germany and the end one will be in Morocco at the end of 2018.   Good Shepherd have been present within these processes too bringing examples of good practice to the discussions.  Theresa Symons from Malaysia and Magdalena Saavedra from the Philippines were present in Dhaka;  Magdalena and Cecilie in Berlin.

There were a series of UN Regional Commission consultations – ECLAC, ESCWA, ECA, ESCAP, and ECE.    Good Shepherd only managed to attend one of these session  (ECLAC – in Santiago Chile!

Cecilie attended Phase 2 – Stocktaking Phase in December in Mexico.  She was also the representative for the NGO Committee on Migration.

Phase three begins in February 2018 with the publication of the ‘Zero Draft” and the commencement of negotiations.  This will take place in New York and Cecilie will follow the negotiations intently.  Negotiations at the global level set the guidelines for global processes and guidelines to be implemented at national level.  This work starting in February is not merely the work of the GSIJP office but also the work of each country where Good Shepherd has a presence as Member States are instructed by ‘Capital’ as to what is acceptable or not acceptable in the global compact.  You can read more Information  here.  See the Letter Template in 6 languages to help you with advocacy at national level.

Another website that has very valuable information is  Migration and Development Civil Society Network (MADE).   MADE evolved out of years of GFMD organising, and was launched in 2014, benefitting from initial co-funding from the European Union for three years. The coordination of GFMD civil society activities has now become part of the Migration and Development Civil Society Network (MADE), organised by the Civil Society Coordinating Office, operating under the auspices of the International Catholic Migration Commission (ICMC), in partnership with the International Steering Committee (ISC) and MADE regional and thematic coordinators.

A very important work of MADE are policy formulations taking account of the civil society recommendations.   The document that is currently in use to guide the global compact on Migration is ‘Now and How – 10 Acts for the Global Compact.’

Screen Shot 2017-12-30 at 12.50.40 PM

While this graphic looks cluttered  maybe you will be urged to look at the document if you see the 10 Acts more clearly

1. Drivers of human mobility
2. Safe human mobility pathways
3. Protection
4. Decent work and labor rights
5. Decent living conditions and access to justice
6. Education and skills
7. Inclusion and action against discrimination
8. Transnational and sustainable development
9. Rights, return and reintegration
10. Governance, implementation and monitoring

There are two points that are crosscutting all 10 Acts – The Rights of Children and Gender Responsive Policies – children and girls and women ….

See the document with signatures – 15 Good Shepherd signatures – Portugal, Brazil, Mexico, Burkina Faso, Kenya, US and Toronto Province, Malta, Myanmar, National Advocacy Office (USA) Uganda, Philippines (RGS-COW), Australia, Sri Lanka, Egypt and Lebanon!   See Document With Signatures

Maintenant et Comment Dix Actes pour le Pacte mondial

Ahora y Así Diez Pasos para el Pacto mundial

Arabic and Chinese coming soon.

“The Stocktaking phase of the Global Compact for Migration has come to an end in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Cecilie represented Good Shepherd and the NGO Committee on Migration in the Civil Society Stocktaking strategy meeting on 2-3 December, co-leading the civil society strategy and engagement with governments on the protection of migrants. She continued this dialogue during the official UN Stocktaking on 4-6 December. There was a spirit of determination, a strong endorsement of international cooperation, and a focus on rights & dignity of all migrants. #ForMigration #GlobalCompactMigration         READ MORE from the MADE Website

Cecilie has prepared the GCM Stocktaking Report a good overview of what happened the meeting, outlining core principles and the call for action orientated proposals  while noting issues that did not receive adequate attention.  What do you think?  Why not write a comment, share a good practice or your concerns.  You can do so in the comment section of the blog.

UNANIMA representative Teresa Blumenstein and Olga Sanchez, a Combini Sister were also present

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

There is also a Global Compact for Refugees.  See for details  The process is different but there will also be a zero draft negotiated. By February 2018 UNHCR will prepare a draft of the Global Compact on Refugees and formal consultation with Member States and other relevant stakeholders will commence.

 

Migration in Focus – Geneva – Berlin

The Third Informal Thematic Session in preparation for the negotiation of the Global Compact on Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration took place in Geneva on 19-20 June, 2017.  This session focused on International co-operation and governance of migration in all its dimensions, including at borders, transit, entry, return, readmission, integration and reintegration.  Cecilie Kern from the GSIJP office represented us in Geneva and from there to Berlin for the Global Forum on Migration and Development.  See Full Report

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Statement from the Floor in Geneva

Mercy Global Action

Another Interesting Perspective from Mercy Global Action

MADE

Migration and Development Civil Society Network

Statement on International Migration…

DCq9mBBWAAAThKD.jpg-large

NGO Com on Migration  Misión de México ONU  Switzerland at the UN    IOM        GCM

Representative of the GSIJP Team and Mercy International Association team in Geneva for the thematic consultation on migration.   Today Cecilie Kern delivered our joint statement on behalf of both organizations.

 

Read the statement GCM Thematic Session 3 – Informal Stakeholder Dialogue Statement Final

Some snippets:    …vital to maximizing the positive benefits of migration and reducing vulnerabilities for people on the move.    …policies are human rights-based, and therefore universal, and applicable to all migrants, regardless of status.  …border management policies must be human rights-based and gender and age-sensitive. Authorities, including border agents, police, military and other security forces, must be held accountable for human rights violations, including exploitation and corruption.  … provide all migrant women workers with safe, orderly and regular channels for migration that guarantee human rights, full labor rights and social protection for them and their families … Families should never be separated by policy enforcement, and children, including unaccompanied and separated children, should never be placed into detention or criminalized for their migratory status or that of their parents …

Congratulations Cecilie and Colleen – well done!   Today is ….

Refugee Day

Migration – 3rd Thematic Session on International Cooperation

June 19 and 20 at the UN in Geneva the 3rd Thematic Session on Migration is in progress.  The theme is ‘International cooperation and governance of migration in all its dimensions, including at borders, on transit, entry, return, readmission, integration and reintegration.’  The GSIJP Office is represented by Cecilie Kern.  She is accompanied by Colleen Cloonan of the Mercy Global Action at the UN.   Cecilie will delver a joint statement on behalf of both organizations.  The statement is a response to the Issues Brief #3 and supplemented by  experiences from Theresa Symons (MDO Office – Asia Pacific), Magdalena Saavedra from the Philippines and Mercy Global Action office at the UN.

Clare Nolan did an article for Global Sisters Report  in January 2017 based on the experiences of Theresa and Magdalena following the Global Forum on Migration in Dhaka, Bangledesh.

Colleen Cloonan, Cecilie Kern and Winifred Doherty 

Tomorrow June 20th is World Refugee Day 2017.  A separate compact is being prepared to address the issue of Refugees.  Read this article  “Crisis in South Sudan, world’s fastest growing refugee emergency.”

We express appreciation to Sr Regina Hanko of the Province of Austria-Switzerland and Czech Republic for preparing the prayer this month.   English  French and Spanish     See more at Spanish French and English

Here is another prayer in English that has come in my e-mail –  World Refugee Day 2017 Prayer Service

According to the United Nation there are an estimated 58 million people displaced worldwide, 2.3 million asylum seekers, and 34 million people have been forcibly displaced within their own countries. António Guterres announced “These truly are alarming numbers. They reflect individual suffering on a huge scale and they reflect the difficulties of the international community in preventing conflicts and promoting timely solutions for them. The time is NOW to show that the global public stands with refugees.” (Facts and figures: UNHCR assessed April 2016) Taken from the prayer service prepared by ‘Becoming Neighours, Toronto’  See more