Migrants Rights International

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

MRI Oral Statement Presented at the Informal Hearings

Oral Statement Presented at the Informal Interactive Hearings of the General Assembly with NGOs, Civil Society Organizations and the Private Sector


Segment 1: Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach to international migration, and ensuring respect for and protection of the human rights of all migrants and their families.


Mr. President, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen, in view of the UN Secretary General’s report and the General Assembly High Level Dialogue on Migration and Development, I make this statement on behalf of Migrants Rights International (MRI)—a global civil society network of migrant workers associations and unions, labor and community-based organizations and non-governmental organizations promoting the human rights of migrants.

1990 UN Migrant Workers Convention & UN Human Rights Mechanisms & Procedures

MRI welcomes the effort of the UN Secretary General and the General Assembly to highlight the issue of migration and bring it to the forefront of discussions of the international community, particularly the need to protect the human rights of migrants and the reference made to UN international human rights instruments and Conventions of the International Labour Organization, with the 1990 UN International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families being cited as the “most comprehensive international treaty dealing with the rights of migrant workers.”

MRI notes with regret, however, that despite being a document of the UN Secretary General, this Report does not make full reference to these UN human rights mechanisms in order to further enhance the human rights perspective in addressing migration and development. These, along with the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants, the UN Commission on Human Rights and the Durban Declaration and Program of Action, all offer sound human rights framework for the treatment of migrant workers.

We urge the UN Secretary General to use these mechanisms as the fundamental normative and analytical framework for its treatment of the issue of migration and development, so as to continuously remind States of their obligation to protect, promote and fulfil migrants’ human rights.

Global Consultative Forum and Civil Society Participation

With regard to the idea put forward by the Report of an intergovernmental “consultative forum,” MRI is seriously concerned about the absence of participation by civil society, trade unions, and migrants themselves. In particular, para. 21 of the Report states that Governments would only engage with NGOs and civil society “when they deem it desirable and necessary”. We view this as a threat to genuine migrant civil society participation. Any consultative forum on migration and development which does not include representatives from civil society, the NGO community, trade unions, migrants and their organizations, would not articulate policy ideas that leading to sustainable development.

MRI Framework

MRI promotes the rights-based approach to international migration that:

rectifies inequalities between women and men in the migration process; and that
acknowledges the current imbalances in economic and trade relations between developing and developed countries, that are dictated by strong corporate interests in the North and a neo-liberal economic agenda that intensifies poverty, destroys the environment, depletes farmlands, heightens conflict and armed struggle, strips indigenous peoples of their ancestral domain and identity, and creates human suffering -- all of which constitute the real root cause of migration.

Examining the Consequences of Migration within the Frame of Human Rights

MRI notes with deep concern that the current mode of labour migration denies migrants’ access to their human rights, especially economic, social and cultural rights. Migrant workers exist as a cheap, exploited and un-unionized labour force. The complexity of the migration discourse thereby demands a more deliberate process of engagement in debunking the myths around migration, and developing policies that would make migration a valuable experience for all.

MRI is deeply disturbed by the arguments presented in the Report that are strongly concentrated on labor mobility and on enhancing the positive economic benefits of migration, while lacking a firm analysis of how the migration process impacts on migrants’ labour and human rights. We caution that an overemphasis on labour market economics commodifies the migrant worker and treats them as mere factors of production.

Programmes of managed migration to maximize economic benefit tend to be regressive and restrictive in the name of national sovereignty and security.

MRI asserts, therefore, that any development discourse that denies the fulfilment of migrants’ human rights is simply unacceptable to migrants and members of their families. To protect, promote and fulfil human rights of every person, including all migrants regardless of status, asylum seekers and refugees, are the core obligations of States. Fulfilling migrants’ right to decent employment, equitable wages and proper working conditions, trade union rights, access to basic public services and social security, and the right to family reunification is essential to ensuring migrants’ well-being and integration in the host country.

The Human Rights of Vulnerable Groups of Migrants

MRI places special attention to the most vulnerable groups of migrants, which include undocumented migrants, women migrants and migrant domestic workers, children of migrant workers and aged migrants.

MRI views that the Report lacks systematic analysis of the reasons why irregular migration occurs on the scale it does across the world. In MRI’s experience, irregular migration increases when national immigration policies operate in excessively bureaucratic ways, with States imposing fragmented immigration policies that only exacerbate the further exploitation of migrants, placing them in dangerous and clandestine situations.

MRI urgently calls on Governments to regularise undocumented migrant, establish comprehensive solutions that incorporate migrant workers’ rights and perspectives, and create the social space in which migrants can prosper and achieve their full aspirations for a better life for themselves, their families, communities and countries.

Recommendations to the Continued Process of the UNHLD

Finally, in addition to the accredited participation for a 12-person civil society representation at the HLD, we urge the General Assembly and the Secretary General to recommend to all member States to include in their delegation to the HLD at least one civil society representative with considerable experience in working on migration, and that a consultative process be initiated at the country level prior to participation at the HLD.


Presented by:

Sajida Ally
Migrants Rights International
12 July 2006

Deputy Secretary General on the Role of CSO's in migration debate

CIVIL SOCIETY’S ROLE IN MIGRATION DEBATE TO ENSURE REAL RISKS NOT OVERLOOKED,
SAYS DEPUTY SECRETARY-GENERAL AT GENERAL ASSEMBLY HEARING


Following are Deputy Secretary-General Mark Malloch Brown’s remarks at the informal, interactive hearings of the General Assembly with non-governmental organizations, civil society and the private sector on international migration and development, in New York, 12 July:
These civil society hearing have become an important part of how the General Assembly prepares for debates, such as the forthcoming one on international migration and development. We had two similar hearings recently: one on HIV/AIDS during the high-level meeting of the General Assembly on that subject, and the second on the challenges facing the least developed countries.

We have already seen the consequences of these kinds of hearings in the meeting of the General Assembly on HIV/AIDS. It was quite clear that, as a consequence of the hearings, a very high degree of mobilization of civil society, and its willingness to lobby for a resolution at the General Assembly meeting itself, led to a hugely improved final resolution, which tackled a number of issues that Governments, left to themselves, would have skirted around for reasons of delicacy, protocol and just a reluctance to tackle socially difficult issues.

This is very clear proof of the importance and value of these hearings. They offer the opportunity to expand the debate beyond the vital critical inner circle of Governments, to those of you with very strong points of view, representing very strong and important constituencies. It is a huge strengthening of the UN’s convening role that hearings such as these take place. I can already suspect the kind of contribution you will make today on the issue of international migration and development.

I hope you have all looked at the Secretary-General’s report. It is a very optimistic report. It is a report that he, his Special Representative, Peter Sutherland, and the authors in DESA all believe offers a vision of how migration, if it is well managed and well supported, can be a win-win situation for both countries of origin and countries of destination.

Countries of destination gain enormously in economic, social, cultural, intellectual and many other ways, through the many contributions that migrants make, which are listed in the report. Countries of origin benefit through remittances and other economic returns. This win-win situation is vital, critical and true.

The role of civil society is to warn us, and to make sure that we don’t overlook the real risks of international migration, particularly in the area of human rights.

We have all seen, in all of our countries, how migrants are often the victims of unscrupulous employers without protection in the workplace. We have seen how they are denied rights in new host states -- not just political and civil rights, but also through the denial of access to education and health care for their families. We have seen the particular challenges that women -- who now form almost half the international migrant flow -- face, in particular during the period of their journey to new homes, when there is a risk that they will fall into the hands of those seeking to make a trade out of sexual exploitation. There is also the marginal role they often play in the new workplaces of their host countries, compared to their male counterparts, and the discrimination they face in the new host society.

Equally, I am sure you would want to press hard on the issue of the cost to the countries that migrants leave, and how we redress the “brain drain”. I, as a former head of UNDP, was very impressed by many of the debates in Southern Africa about how to protect the human capital in the health and education sectors, when so many doctors and nurses were leaving for higher-paid employment elsewhere. What was the economic way of compensating the Governments for this? What were the training and other approaches that could be used to minimize this loss of a critical and skilled service group to these economies, particularly to societies already under so much stress and challenge from HIV/AIDS?

Of course, it is all very well to say that remittances contribute to a win-win situation. But, remittances are most useful when they are protected by banking systems that allow money to reach relatives back home without exploitative charges, and which prevent the loss of monies through corrupt and inefficient banking sectors that don’t really have the rural networks.
Without this kind of support, the potential value to the societies of origin is often lost. So I hope these points, which sometimes we at the intergovernmental level tend to put aside in the rush to stress the win-win elements, will not be forgotten. I hope that you will contribute to enriching the debate with these kind of points.

The September high-level dialogue has three purposes.

One, of course, is to raise awareness on the issue of international migration and development -- although the headlines from around the world have made sure that few people are unaware of the challenges of this issue today.

Second is to really try and spell out the linkages between international migration and poverty reduction, both the pluses and the minuses, and how we can correct the minuses.
Third is to highlight the best practices and best policies being used by countries to tackle these issues.

The Secretary-General, Peter Sutherland, DESA and I see the consultative forum as one of the more important recommendations of the Secretary-General’s report. It reflects a feeling that work on migration policy at the national and international level is much too divided between different domestic ministries, between ministries of labour, interior, refugee affairs, social affairs and foreign ministries. Too few Governments have a locus for thinking about international migration and the range of domestic and international issues it raises.

Forming an international and consultative forum will force countries to assign responsibility for this issue, and then to engage with their counterparts in the North and South around the world to start getting the right tradeoffs between the issues of those countries from which migrants come, and those countries to which migrants go. Of course, it is no longer a simple North-South division; there is a lot of interregional migration and other flows, which have largely got lost in the debate so far.
We hope a discussion of this kind would involve Governments, UN agencies and the IOM, which has played an important role. We hope Governments would allow space for civil society participation at the appropriate moments in their discussions as well. We hope, if this happens, that we can start to institutionalize the discussion around migration, in order to drive better policies everywhere.

Today, with this hearing, we are embarking on an important process, which we hope will culminate in a much strengthened, much more thoughtful, much more just and equitable handling of the international migration issue in the years ahead.

GENERAL ASSEMBLY HOLDS CIVIL SOCIETY HEARINGS ON MIGRATION

Sixtieth General Assembly

Civil Society Hearings on Migration
and Development (AM & PM)

MIGRANTS HUMAN RIGHTS, COST OF ‘BRAIN DRAIN’, PROTECTING REMITTANCES AMONG ISSUES
RAISED AS GENERAL ASSEMBLY HOLDS CIVIL SOCIETY HEARINGS ON MIGRATION

Gathered in New York today, representatives of non-governmental organizations called on the United Nations and its Member States to work in a spirit of genuine cooperation with civil society to come up with a comprehensive global people-centred policy on migration and development, and to put the “migration puzzle” together, while keeping the human rights of migrants central in the debate.

Ahead of the General Assembly High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development -- scheduled for 14-15 September 2006 –- representatives of non-governmental organizations, civil society and the private sector lead the four-part, informal and interactive hearings with Member States and United Nations agencies, which focused on the promotion of migrants’ human rights, socio-economic policy challenges for sending and receiving counties, and the promotion of partnerships and capacity-building to benefit countries and migrants alike. Acting Assembly President Cheick Sidi Diarra of Mali moderated the hearings.

While stressing the absolute necessity of highlighting “positives”, such as boosts for receiving country labour markets and the importance of remittances -- money earned abroad and sent back to the country of origin –- speakers cautioned against glossing over or discounting the human and social cost of migration. They called for greater overall attention to the root cause of much of today’s migration, as well as to the reality that many migrants continued to remain on the margins of societies, both in their home countries and in their host countries, with no effective social, economic or political participation.

Many were concerned that the Secretary-General’s report (document A/60/871), which served as the blueprint for the hearings, did not balance the economic dimension of migration with an equivalent emphasis on the people-centred, social dimensions of development. They were not “units of labour” said one speaker, who noted the intersecting race, class and gender vulnerabilities of migrants, as well as the discrimination and social marginalization they faced, and said that an effective consideration of international migration, therefore, must be squarely focused on, among others, employment, social inclusion and poverty eradication.

One speaker said that no real headway could be made, unless the international community squarely addressed the complex issues surrounding racism and gender equality. She urged migrants and activists working on their behalf to adopt a “nothing about us without us” stance to ensure that the concerns of all migrants were openly discussed and taken on-board in intergovernmental processes of refugees, as well as migrants. Another non-governmental organization representative urged everyone to take advantage of the hearings to press for action on issues that Governments would rather ignore. Others echoed that sentiment, calling for special attention to indigenous migrants, migrant victims of trafficking, migrant youth and internally displaced persons.

Examining challenges for social and economic policies, some participants took that notion a step further, with one non-governmental organization representative saying that the aim of connecting development and migration should be to reinforce the fight against the root causes of poverty. States must also consider how a deeper commitment to human rights would improve progress towards more equitable worldwide development, thereby reducing the pressure to migrate. Indeed, access to education, more and better jobs, decent working conditions and free access to basic health care were elements that contributed to the prevention of forced migration.
Several speakers pointed out, however, that simply providing jobs or access to employment was really only a half measure without ensuring that such employment was safe, dignified, non-exploitive and paid fair wages.

One speaker called on the Secretary-General and other top United Nations officials to press Member States to ratify or accede to the International Convention on the Protection of Migrant Workers and Their Families, and to vigorously promote and support relevant International Labour Organization instruments and covenants, which together formed the core of the international normative framework on international migration.
Calling for an integrated and holistic approach, Peter Sutherland, Special Representative of the Secretary-General on International Migration and Development, via video-link from Rabat, where he had just attended a meeting between African and European Union ministers on the impact of migration, said that the complexities of migration today demanded that civil society and private sector actors participated actively in the debate. Indeed, civic actors, particularly those from migrant communities, were real partners in development today, and were critical to generating cooperation and partnerships among all stakeholders to minimize the negative effects of migration and to take advantage of the assets offered by migrants for development.
Mark Malloch Brown, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, said it was up to civil society to warn the international community to ensure the real risks of migration were not overlooked -- particularly in the area of human rights. And while the effective management of international migration could be a win-win situation for both receiving countries and countries of origin, it was no secret that many migrants, particularly women, were routinely marginalized, denied not only civil and political rights, but also access to education and health care, among others.

He expected that, during the hearings, civil society would press hard on such issues as the real costs to the countries that migrants left, and how “brain drain” could be more effectively addressed. By example he said, a major discussion was under way concerning Africa, and how to protect and compensate Governments for the human capital that was lost, say, in the health-care field in societies that were already under so much stress from HIV/AIDS. Further, remittances must be protected. International and regional banking systems must ensure that such funds were safely transferred back to home countries and not diverted, or co-opted by corrupt or abusive banking networks, otherwise, potential value would be lost.

Among the recommendations on the way forward, one non-governmental organization representative called for tax relief on remittances for development, boosting cooperation between sending and receiving countries on support for migrant business opportunities, and including migration for development strategies in poverty reduction strategies. Another suggested pouring money into training unskilled migrant workers, rather than into building detention centres and holding cells.

One speaker said that it was important for Governments to promote freedom of movement for migrant youth towards the creation of a “true path for development” beyond remittances that would link the diaspora with home countries, while establishing an international framework for an exchange of knowledge and skills. Still, others said that the global debate on migration must include the business community, regional processes, and must consider issues such as the erosion of the middle class in sending countries and voting while in the diaspora.

The participants in the hearings also expressed support for the Secretary-General’s proposal to create a “consultative forum” on migration and development issues, but were concerned that his report noted that such a panel would seek the participation of non-governmental organization representatives and civil society when Governments “deemed it desirable and necessary”.

They strongly reiterated their belief that any such forum that did not include civil society, trade unions, migrant and their networks, among others, could not fully articulate policy ideas that would lead to genuine and sustainable development.

Summing up the discussions, Mr. Diarra said the results of the hearings represented an important contribution to the upcoming High-Level Dialogue. Speakers had underlined the importance of ensuring respect and protection of the rights of all migrants and their families, particularly the right to life, work and equitable remuneration, among others. They had also insisted on promoting the ratification of relevant international treaties and covenants, particularly ahead of the September Dialogue. They had also recommended that the dialogue should be transparent and inclusive, so that any plans or initiatives that might flow from the event would be more people-centred, and to ensure that national security concerns or economic arrangements did not eclipse migration policies.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

NGO Responses to the Secretary General's Report ! ! !

The report on NGO comments on the Secretary General's report on international migration and development, which were solicited on-line and compiled by NGLS is now out.

The report is available on the NGLS and www.unmigration.org websites. It is also being distributed to all the Hearings participants and copies will be made available in the Trusteeship Council Chamber on 12 July for Member States and media to pick up.

To read the full report please click on the following link:

http://www.un.org/esa/population/hldmigration/Text/Migration.pdf

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

List of Speakers and Spokespersons for the Informal Interactive Hearings


Informal Interactive Hearings of the General Assembly with Non-Governmental
Organizations, Civil Society Organizations and the Private Sector
on International Migration and Development
United Nations Headquarters, New York
12 July 2006

Trusteeship Council Chamber

Confirmed Speakers and Spokespersons as of 7 July

Segment 1: Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach to international
migration, and ensuring respect for and protection of the human rights of all
migrants and their families

Speakers

Ms. Sajida Zarren Ally – Migrants Rights International
Mr. John Bingham – International Catholic Migration Commission
Ms. Genevieve Gencianos – Public Services International

Spokespersons

Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development- Ms. Nalini Singh
CCA- Mr. Charles Uwiragiye
Centro de Estudios Migratorios Latinoamericanos- Mr. Mario Santillo
December 18- Mr. Rene Plaetevoet
Human Rights Watch- Ms. Nisha Varia
Indigenous World Association for the Aldet Centre- Mr. Albert Deterville
La Strada- Ms. Ana Ravenco
Mekong Migration Network- Ms. Jacquline Pollock
Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants- Mr. Don Flynn
Realizing Rights- Ms. Heather Grady
Solidarity Center- Ms. Neha Misra
Youth International Sayhi Nigeria- Mr. Kingsley Essomeonu

Segment 2: International migration and development - challenges for social and
economic policies in sending and receiving countries

Speakers

Ms. Ana Avendano – AFL-CIO
Ms. Gloria Camacho – CEPLAES
Mr. Rex Marlo Y Varona – Asían Migrant Centre

Spokespersons

AfricaRecruit -Ms. Onome Ako
Center for Migrant Advocacy Philippines- Ms. Ellene Sana
Essential Workers Immigration Coalition- Ms. Laura Reiff
Federation of Kenyan Employers- Ms. Jackline Mugo
The Foundation for Democracy in Africa- Mr. Fred Oladeinde
Institute for Public Policy Research- Mr. Dhananjayan Sriskandarajah
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)- Ms. Helené Lackenbauer
Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS)- Mr. Marc Valadao

Hague Process on Refugees and Migrants- Mr. Philip Rudge
Migrant, Refugee and Displaced Continental Network- Ms. Manuela Natividad Obeso Gonzales
National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights- Ms. Catherine Tactaquin

Segment 3: International migration and development - challenges for social and
economic policies in sending and receiving countries (continued)

Speakers

Ms. Jacqueline Coke-Lloyd – Jamaica Employers’ Federation
Ms. Anastasia Crickley – NCCRI, Pavee Point, OSCE, EUMC
Mr. Emeka Chikezie – African Foundation for Development
Mr. Santiago De La Cruz – CONAIE

Spokespersons

American Council on International Personnel- Ms. Lynn Shotwell
Christian Children's Fund- Ms. Asa Ekvall
Dialects - Ms. Diana Senior
Franciscans International- Ms. Alam Liliane
Joint Committee for Migrant Workers in Korea (JCMK)- Ms. Kim Mi-Sun
Philippine Resources for Sustainable Development, Inc.- Mr. Robert Sagun
International Presentation Association Sisters of the Presentation- Georgina Ann Costello
NGO Subcommittee on the Human Rights of Immigrants and Refugees- Richard Mandelbaum
Tebtebba Foundation and UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues- Victoria Tauli-Corpuz
Think Centre and Convener of the ASEAN Taskforce on Migrant Workers- Sinapan Samydorai

Segment 4: Policy responses - Promoting the building of partnerships and capacitybuilding
and the sharing of best practices at all levels, including the bilateral and
regional levels, for the benefit of countries and migrants alike

Speakers

Mr. Austin Fragomen – Fragomen, Del Ray, Bernsen & Loewy, LLP
Ms. Hope P. White-Davis – The World Association of Former United Nations Interns
Mr. Michael Boampong – Young People We Care (Video Conference?) or Ms. Marioliva
Gonzalez - Red Global de Accion juvenil, GYAN Mèxico AC

Spokespersons

American Bar Association- Ms. Ellen Lafili Yost
Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development- Ms. Pia Oberoi
Center For Migration Studies Of New York INC- Mr. Leonir Chiarello
Global Rights- Ms. Ann Jordan
International Center for Policy Studies, OSI/HESP Academic Fellowship Program- Ms. Olesya
Kotsyumbas
Pathfinder Group- Mr. Ikram Ul-Majeed Sehgal
Servicio Jesuita para Migrantes de Centroamérica- Mr. José Luis Rocha
Sumando Uruguay- Mr. Fabrizio Scrollini
Southern African Migration Project (SAMP)- Mr. Jonathan Crush
US Chamber of Commerce- Mr. Randel Johnson
Vancouver Status of Women- Ms. Angela Contreras
Welfare Association of Repatriated Bangledesh Employees- Mr. Syed Saiful Haque

Friday, July 07, 2006

Provisional Programme of the Informal Interactive Hearings


To be held at United Nations Headquarters, Trusteeship Council Room
12 July 2006, New York

10.00 – 10:40 Opening of the Hearings

10:45 – 11:45 Segment 1: Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach
to international migration, and ensuring respect for and
protection of the human rights of all migrants and their
families.
11:50 – 13:00 Segment 2: International migration and development -
challenges for social and economic policies in sending and
receiving countries.
15:00 – 16:15 Segment 3: International migration and development contd.-
challenges for social and economic policies in sending and
receiving countries.
16:20 – 17:30 Segment 4: Policy responses - Promoting the building of
partnerships and capacity-building and the sharing of best
practices at all levels, including the bilateral and regional
levels, for the benefit of countries and migrants alike.
17:30 – 18:00 Closing of the Hearings

CSO Hearings Orientation Meeting

The meeting will take place at the Church Center, located at the corner of 44th Street and
1st Avenue
, New York, on the second floor and in other rooms, to be requested. No special
building pass is required to enter the building.

The meeting will serve as a preparatory event for NGOs/CSOs/the private sector, prior to
their interactive dialogue with UN Member States at the hearings on 12 July. It will
allow speakers, spokespersons and attendees to be briefed on the background, logistics
and organizational aspects of the hearings, on their respective roles, and on strategies to
enhance their participation. The objective is to ensure that the Hearings become an
important entry point for NGOs/CSOs/the private sector, into the High Level Dialogue on
International Migration and Development, to be held at UN Headquarters on 14-15
September 2006.

The meeting will also provide an opportunity for civil society representatives to network
among themselves and with various UN agencies and programmes as well as other
international organizations involved in international migration issues. Speakers and
spokespersons will interact in thematic and regional breakout sessions with other civil
society actors, thereby working towards effective and coordinated messages for
presentation at the Hearings on 12 July and an informal working lunch with several UN
agencies, the IOM and the World Bank will take place from 12.30 to 2.30.
9:30- 10:15 Orientation
Welcoming remarks and general introduction
Vice President of the General Assembly (TBA)
General landscape of migration - background of Secretary General’s Report.
Mr. Gregory Maniatis, DESA (TBA)
Presentation of the Secretary General’s Report
Ms. Hania Zlotnik, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population
Division
10:15-11:00 Objectives and Logistics: Background and expectations for the day
Ms. Gemma Adaba - Task Force Member
Ms. Elisa Peter – United Nations Non Governmental Liaison Service
Ms. Shamina de Gonzaga – Office of the President of the General Assembly

11:15-12:30 p.m. Thematic Breakout Sessions
The sessions will feature small group discussion focused on the themes of the four panels
of the hearings. These are as follows:

Session 1. Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach to international migration,
and ensuring respect for and protection of human rights of all migrants and their families.
Session 2. International migration and development – challenges for social and economic
policies in sending and receiving countries.
Session 3. International migration and development cont’d – challenges for social and
economic policies in sending and receiving countries.
Session 4. Policy responses – Promoting the building of partnerships and capacitybuilding
and the sharing of best practices at all levels, including the bilateral and regional
levels, for the benefit of countries and migrants alike.
12:30-2:30 p.m. Informal Interactive Working Lunch, sponsored by IOM
Lunch will be a round table event featuring tables presided over by representatives from
the International Organization on Migration (IOM), UNIFEM, UNICEF, UNFPA,
UNITAR and the World Bank. The working lunch will provide an opportunity for
participants to learn about the organizations and agencies’ migration-related programmes
and projects and will give participants a chance to network and discuss issues of
importance to them.
2:30-3:45 p.m. Regional Breakout Sessions
Small groups will discuss regional migration concerns.
4:00-5:00 p.m. Plenary Session
Rapporteurs from the breakout sessions will present conclusions and recommendations
from each group.
Notes: The Secretary General’s Report on Migration will serve as the background for all
discussions in both the thematic and regional breakout sessions.
Eight designated facilitators will implement breakout groups, set guidelines, generate
questions for discussion, and keep time. Rapporteurs, who will present the conclusions
and recommendations of their groups at the plenary session that will close the meeting.
Collection and Editing of reports: Rapporteurs from the breakout sessions will be
responsible for production of the conclusions and recommendations of their particular
session. Interns with laptops will facilitate collection, collation and editing of these
reports for distribution to participants at the end of the hearings on July 12.

International Migration and Development Report of the Secretary General

In Praise of Migration
By Kofi A. Annan
5 June 2006
The Wall Street Journal

Ever since national frontiers were invented, people have been crossing them -- not just to visit foreign countries, but to live and work there. In doing so, they have almost always taken risks, driven by a determination to overcome adversity and to live a better life. Those aspirations have always been the motors of human progress. Historically, migration has improved the well-being, not only of individual migrants, but of humanity as a whole.

And that is still true. In a report that I am presenting tomorrow to the U.N. General Assembly, I summarize research which shows that migration, at least in the best cases, benefits not only the migrants themselves but also the countries that receive them, and even the countries they have left. How so? In receiving countries, incoming migrants do essential jobs which a country's established residents are reluctant to undertake. They provide many of the personal services on which societies depend. They care for children, the sick and the elderly, bring in the harvest, prepare the food, and clean the homes and offices.

They are not engaged only in menial activities. Nearly half the increase in the number of migrants aged 25 or over in industrialized countries in the 1990s was made up of highly skilled people. Skilled or unskilled, many are entrepreneurs who start new businesses -- from round-the-clock delis to Google. Yet others are artists, performers and writers, who help to make their new hometowns centers of creativity and culture. Migrants also expand the demand for goods and services, add to national production, and generally pay more to the state in taxes than they take out in welfare and other benefits. And in regions like Europe, where populations are growing very slowly or not at all, younger workers arriving from abroad help to shore up under funded pension systems.


All in all, countries that welcome migrants and succeed in integrating them intotheir societies are among the most dynamic -- economically, socially and culturally -- in the world. Meanwhile, countries of origin benefit from the remittances that migrants send home, which totaled around $232 billion last year, $167 billion of which went todeveloping countries -- greater in volume than current levels of official aid from all donor countries combined, though certainly not a substitute.

Not only do the immediate recipients benefit from these remittances, but also those who supply the goods and services on which the money is spent. The effect is toraise national income and stimulate investment. Families with members working abroad spend more on education and health care at home. If they are poor -- like the family in the classic Senegalese film, "Le Mandat" -- receiving remittances may introduce them to financial services, such as banks, credit unions and microfinance institutions. More and more governments understand that their citizens abroad can help development, and arestrengthening ties with them. By allowing dual citizenship, permitting overseas voting, expanding consular services and working with migrants to develop their home communities, governments are multiplying the benefits of migration. In some countries, migrant associations are transforming their communities of origin by sending collective remittances to support small-scale development projects.

Successful migrants often become investors in their countries of origin, andencourage others to follow. Through the skills they acquire, they also help transfer technology and knowledge. India's software industry has emerged in large part from intensive networking among expatriates, returning migrants and Indian entrepreneurs both at home and abroad. After working in Greece, Albanians bring home new agricultural skills that allow them to increase production. And so on.

Yes, migration can have its downside -- though ironically some of the worst effects arise from efforts to control it: It is irregular or undocumented migrants who are most vulnerable to smugglers, traffickers and other forms of exploitation. Yes, there are tensions when established residents and migrants are adjusting to each other, especially when their beliefs, customs or level of education are very different. And yes, poor countries suffer when some of their people whose skills are most needed -- for instance health-care workers from Southern Africa -- are "drained" away by higher salaries and better conditions abroad. But countries are learning to manage those problems, and they can do so better if they work together and learn from each other's experience.

That is the object of the "high-level dialogue" on migration and development that the General Assembly is holding this September. No country will be asked or expected toyield control of its borders or its policies to anyone else. But all countries and all governments can gain from discussion and the exchange of ideas.
That's why I hope the September dialogue will be a beginning, not an end. As long as there are nations, there will be migrants. Much as some might wish itotherwise, migration is a fact of life. So it is not a question of stoppingmigration, but of managing it better, and with more cooperation andunderstanding on all sides. Far from being a zero-sum game, migration can be made to yield benefits for all.

---Mr. Annan is secretary general of the U.N.

For the Full Text of the Report Please click on the link below:

http://www.un.org/esa/population/hldmigration/Text/Report%20of%20the%20SG%28June%2006%29_English.pdf

MRI's Comments on the Report of the Secretary General

Comments to the Report of the UN Secretary General’s Report to the 60th Session of the UN General Assembly on agenda item 54 (c): International Migration and Development


Migrants Rights International (MRI)—a global civil society network of migrant workers associations and unions, faith-based groups, labor, community-based organizations and non-governmental organizations promoting the human rights of migrants—submits this written comment to the report of the UN Secretary General in view of the UN General Assembly High Level Dialogue on Migration and Development on 14-15 September 2006. The comment refers to Segment one of the informal interactive hearings on 12 July 2006 and the September High Level Dialogue, i.e. “Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach to the international migration, and ensuring respect for and protection of the human rights of all migrants and members of their families.”

1990 UN Migrant Workers Convention

MRI welcomes the effort of the UN Secretary General and the General Assembly to highlight the issue of migration and bringing it to the forefront of discussions by the international community. We welcome the emphasis made in the Report on the need to protect the human rights of migrants and the reference made to the UN international human rights instruments and Conventions of the International Labour Organization as “constituting the core of the international normative framework on international migration” (para. 283). Particular mention is made of the 1990 UN International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families as the “most comprehensive international treaty dealing with the rights of migrant workers.” Such reiteration should be constantly made by the UN Secretary General so as to continuously remind States of their obligation to protect, promote and fulfil migrants’ human rights and to join other States in ratifying the said Convention, and for those States that have already ratified, to implement the Convention fully and effectively.

Global Consultative Forum and Civil Society Participation

In exploring how the United Nations can better serve its Member States by facilitating intergovernmental cooperation on international migration issues, the UN Secretary General’s Report (hereafter referred to as the “Report”) suggests the creation of a “consultative forum” or “global consultative process” that would offer Governments “a venue to discuss issues related to international migration and development in a systematic and comprehensive way. Such forum or process would complement and add value to the regional consultative processes on migration” (para. 40).

MRI supports the idea of an intergovernmental cooperation such as a “forum” or “consultative process,” but is seriously concerned about the absence of participation by civil society, trade unions, and migrants themselves in this process. We are important partners and stakeholders in this issue of international migration and development. MRI’s members are migrant workers themselves: the ones that are and will be directly affected by these intergovernmental decisions. Therefore, we are deeply disturbed that the UN Secretary General wrote in para. 21 of his Report, with reference to the consultative forum:

“It would (also) offer an opportunity for Governments to engage, when they deem it desirable and necessary, with relevant stakeholders, who bear valuable knowledge and experience, including non-governmental organizations (NGOs), experts and migrant organizations.” (italics added)

We underscore this conditional phrase -- “when they deem it desirable and necessary” -- as a threat to genuine migrant civil society participation. Many migration policies and regulations have failed because governments refused to acknowledge or to listen to the voices of migrants and civil society organizations working with migrants. Often in the past, the failure of States to consult with migrant civil society has led to the creation of incoherent, fragmented, highly bureaucratic and non-transparent migration policies that in turn have led, intentionally or unintentionally, to violations of migrants’ human rights.

It is now time for Governments and the international community to acknowledge the value of migrant civil society organizations in shaping migration policy and take the necessary steps to institutionalize their genuine participation in these processes.

MRI, with its member and partner organizations worldwide which include grassroots-based organizations and migrants themselves, offers its willingness to participate in such global consultative forum in order to bring in the voice and experience of the migrants and propose alternative solutions built on the foundation of human rights.

MRI Framework

As MRI, we promote the rights-based approach to international migration, based on the principles of human rights protection, promotion and fulfilment. This is a framework that:

recognizes inequalities between women and men in the migration process thereby calling for the promotion of gender-sensitive migration policies; and
acknowledges the current imbalances in economic and trade relations between developing and developed countries, dictated by strong corporate interests in the North and a neo-liberal economic agenda that intensifies poverty, destroys the environment, depletes farmlands, heightens conflict and armed struggle, strips indigenous peoples of their ancestral domain and identity, and creates human suffering -- all of which constitute the real root cause of migration.

Examining Root Causes and Consequences of Migration within the Frame of Human Rights

MRI believes that an international agenda to discuss migration and its relationship with development is a welcome though already long delayed initiative. However, we are deeply disturbed by the arguments and proposals presented in the Report. These are strongly concentrated on labor mobility and on enhancing the positive economic benefits of migration, while lacking a firm analysis of the real root causes of why people migrate and how these are linked to the lack of access to human rights, especially economic, social and cultural rights. Among these rights are the right to decent employment, equitable wages and proper working conditions, trade union rights, access to basic public services and social security.

The Report, while recognizing the centrality of human rights, only refers to the obligations of the States to protect the human rights of migrants, particularly in the receiving countries. However, MRI wishes to stress that States also have the additional obligation to promote and fulfil the human rights of every person under its jurisdiction, which includes all migrants regardless of status, asylum seekers and refugees. To protect, promote and fulfil are the core obligations of States to human rights, as provided for in the international human rights instruments. Implementation of these human rights obligations is essential to ensure migrants’ well-being and integration in the host country, and consequently contributing to development.

The Human Rights of Undocumented Migrants

MRI places special attention to the most vulnerable groups of migrants, which include women migrant domestic workers and undocumented migrants. MRI promotes and defends the human rights of these migrants through monitoring and denouncing cases of violations, conducting policy advocacy, establishing migrants` access to redress mechanisms, promoting grassroots organizing and capacity building among migrants, and providing direct assistance.

Working directly with vulnerable migrants, MRI views that the Report lacks systematic analysis of the reasons why irregular migration occurs on the scale it does across the world. Likewise, there is the lack of reliable, sex-disaggregated data to fully comprehend the scale of international migration, particularly the number of migrants going through irregular channels. In MRI’s experience, irregular migration increases when national immigration policies operate in excessively bureaucratic ways, usually considering only the interests of the host country and excluding those of the migrant workers. Insensitive to the migrants’ human rights situation, States continue to impose stringent “stop-gap” solutions or fragmented immigration policies that do not solve the problem but only exacerbate the further exploitation of migrants and place them in dangerous and clandestine situations.

MRI supports the regularisation of undocumented migrants as mentioned in para. 147 of the Report. However, we believe that regularization should go even further towards establishing comprehensive solutions that incorporate migrant worker rights and perspectives as well as allowing the social space in which immigrants can prosper and achieve their aspirations.

Promoting the Rights-Based Approach to International Migration

MRI notes with concern that throughout the Report, managing migration and the maximization of the economic benefits of labour mobility and remittances seem to take primacy over human rights considerations. The establishment of a new framework of “co-development” defined as “the coordinated or concerted improvement of economic and social conditions at both origin and destination countries based on the complementarities between the two” (para. 109) could undermine the rights-based framework to international migration if not properly defined within the frame of human rights.

With reference to co-development, para. 109 of the Report states:

“Migration plays a positive role by providing the workers to satisfy the labor demand in advanced economies and in the dynamic developing economies while at the same time reducing unemployment and underemployment in countries of origin and in the process, generating remittances, savings and know-how for the benefit of the latter.”

MRI cautions Governments and the international community that the overemphasis on the labor market economics of migration creates the risk of “commodifying” the migrant workers, i.e. treating them as mere factors of production and not as human beings with basic human rights.

Finally, we note with regret that despite being a document of the UN Secretary General, the Report itself does not make full reference to or utilize the contributions of existing United Nations human rights mechanisms and procedures in order to further enhance the human rights perspective in addressing migration and development. The UN human rights treaty bodies and their general comments, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants, the UN Commission on Human Rights and the Durban Declaration and Program of Action of the 2001 World Conference Against Racism all offer sound human rights framework to the treatment of migration and migrant workers. The Report, as befits its status as a report from the UN Secretary General, could have done better by making full references to these instruments and mechanisms and using these instruments as the basic normative and analytical framework for its treatment and analysis of the issue of migration and development.





Submitted by:

Sajida Ally
On behalf of Migrants Rights International
Geneva, Switzerland
30 June 2006



This document was drafted by the MRI Secretariat with substantive inputs from MRI’s partners in the various global regions. The following individuals and organizations played a substantive role in the generation of this document:

1) Genevieve Gencianos, Switzerland
2) Nonoi Hacbang, Commission for Filipino Migrant Workers (CFMW), the Netherlands
3) Manfred Bergman, CADI, Italy
4) Pablo Ceriani & Pablo Asa, Centro de Estudio Legales y Sociales (CELS), Argentina
5) William Gois, Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA), the Philippines
6) Colin Rajah, National Network for Immigrant & Refugee Rights (NNIRR), USA
7) Don Flynn, Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM), Belgium

MIGRANT FORUM IN ASIA (MFA) believes that migrants’ rights are human rights. Documented or undocumented, irrespective of race, gender, class, age and religious belief, migrant workers’ rights are guaranteed by the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Convention on the Protection of Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families and other international conventions.
Conceived in 1990 in a meeting of migrant workers’ advocates in Hong Kong, MIGRANT

FORUM IN ASIA or MFA was formally organized in 1994 in a second forum, “Living and Working Together with Migrants in Asia”, held in Taiwan.

MFA is a regional network of non-government organizations (NGOs), associations and trade unions of migrant workers, and individual advocates in Asia that are committed to protect and promote the rights and welfare of migrant workers. It is guided by a vision of an alternative world system based on respect for human rights and dignity, social justice, and gender equity, particularly for migrant workers.
MFA acts as facilitator, a regional communication and coordination point between member-organizations and advocates, forging concerted action to address discriminatory laws and policies, violence against women migrants, unjust living and working conditions, unemployment in the homeland, and other issues affecting migrant workers

MFA welcomes the draft report of the Secretary General in preparation for the High Level Dialogue (HLD) on ‘Migration and Development’ to be held on 14-15 September 2006 at the UN Head Quarters in New York. We recognize the significance and the timely nature of the HLD. The complexity of the migration discourse demands a more deliberate process of engagement in debunking the myths around migration and developing policies that would make migration a positively more valuable experience for all.

1) In this regard MFA supports the proposal in the report of a consultative forum under the auspices of the United Nations, “as a venue to discuss issues related to international migration and development in a systematic and comprehensive way (para 40).” However we draw the attention to the fact that there is a need to look at similar initiatives undertaken by the UN in order to foster dialogue, understanding and cooperation, and to their effectiveness in delivering the same.

We express grave concern at the statement in the report which explains that the consultative forum “would also offer an opportunity for Governments to engage, when they deem it desirable or necessary (emphasis mine),with relevant stakeholders, who bear valuable knowledge and experience, including non-governmental organizations (NGOs), experts, and migrant organizations. (41).”

Any consultative forum on migration and development which does not include representatives from civil society, the NGO community, and migrants and their organizations in its constitutive element, cannot fully articulate policy ideas that would lead to genuine and sustainable development.

2) The report lacks a sharp gender perspective on the issue of migration, given the increase in the feminization of labour migration, on the development perspective shared in the report, and on the interfacing of the two.

3) The flip side of the ‘positive’ dimension of globalization would necessarily be the right to mobility. We cannot on the one hand speak of international migration today, as in earlier times, being “intrinsically linked to the development of both receiving and sending countries (109),” and then revert to manage migration programmes that are regressive and restrictive in the name of national sovereignty and security. Our experience has shown that such measures only serve to breed discrimination, fear of the other, racism, xenophobia, and an increase in irregular and undocumented migration.

We therefore reiterate the reports concern for establishing a genuine dialogue process that would go beyond the current level of regional consultative processes, “especially since the latter do not usually address issues related to development, focusing instead on managing regional migration flows (emphasis mine) (40).”

4) While the report dwells on the need for a freer international mobility of skilled and unskilled labour for an increase in global income and its equitable distribution (152-153), it fails to question the neo-liberal market economy which creates the very conditions that serve as push and pull factors for migrants in struggling and failing economies. Furthermore the report suggests that because international migration seemingly contributes to poverty reduction, “it is useful to take migration into account in developing countries poverty reductions strategies and in preparing and planning documents for the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) process, as is being done in some developing countries (189).” We therefore highlight in the report the temporary nature of international migration as a poverty reduction strategy
because of remittance flows, and caution against such a policy development as it can “ easily masquerade as a substitute for sound development policies and countries can become dependent on remittance flows (226).”

5) The general co-development perspective that emerges from a reading of the report tends to
emphasize the economic aspect of development, the commodification of migrant labour, and a view of remittances that shrouds the struggle and sacrifice of the migrants. It would be helpful if the discussions during the HLD would expound on a deeper understanding of co-development raising concerns from a humane and socially just alternative co-development framework.

6) We appreciate the instances in the report where the need for a rights based approach to the shaping of a co-development migration policy have been indicated. However we firmly believe that this must go beyond the level of “consideration (35).” The 1990 UN Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, together with the ILO Conventions 97 and 143, the Declaration and Programme of The World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance, the other core human rights instruments and the outcomes of UN Conferences and summits held since 1990, provide a solid framework upon which a co-development migration policy by a constituent forum must essentially be built.

7) Finally while recognizing the accredited participation for a 12 persons civil society representation at the HLD we urge the General Assembly and the Secretary General to recommend to all member states to include in their delegation to the HLD at least one representative from civil society having considerable experience in the area of addressing issues related to migration, and that a consultative processes be initiated at country level prior to participation at the HLD.

Migrant Forum Asia30 th June 2006

Call For Comments on the Secretary General's Report ! ! !

The NGLS Call for Comments on the Secretary-General’s Report is open until 30 June.
NGLS is calling for comments that will mirror the structure of the Informal Interactive Hearings with NGOs, Civil Society and the Private Sector and the High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development in September:

Segment 1: Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach to international migration, and ensuring respect for and protection of the human rights of all migrants and their families.

Segments 2 & 3: International migration and development - challenges for social and economic policies in sending and receiving countries.

Segment 4: Policy responses - Promoting the building of partnerships and capacity-building and the sharing of best practices at all levels, including the bilateral and regional levels, for the benefit of countries and migrants alike.

Respondents may respond to any theme or section of the report but please indicate which Segment is being responded to and, more specifically, which paragraph of the report.

Please limit comments to a maximum of 1,000 words.

Please indicate first your name in "Identity" box, then organization and region inside the

"Organisation" area before submitting text comments.

The Call for Comments is meant to create space for civil society, especially those organizations who will be unable to participate in the Hearings, to provide their views, suggestions and ideas on issues discussed in the Secretary-General’s Report on International Migration and Development which will provide the framework for discussion during the Informal Interactive Hearings with NGOs, Civil Society and the Private Sector and the High-Level Dialogue. Comments will be collected and, based on the response rate, a compilation of comments will be drawn up and made available to NGOs and Member States attending the 12 July Informal Interactive Hearings.

For more information click on the link below:
http://www.un-ngls.org/site/article.php3?id_article=49

Informal Interactive Hearings of the General Assembly with Non-Governmental


United Nations Headquarters, New York
12 July 2006

Criteria for the selection of speakers and spokespersons

The Task Force will advise the President on the list of speakers and spokespersons
based on the following criteria:
• Broad substantive expertise from a policy, advocacy or programmatic perspective
on issues related to international migration and development;
• Representation of organizations or networks of a public interest nature, focused,
inter alia, on migration issues, and operating at the national, regional or
international level;
• Balance in terms of gender, geographic (sending and receiving countries) and
sectoral representation, as well as in relation to racial, ethnic, and intergenerational
diversity;
• Representation of organizations or community groups of migrants in host
countries. The selection process should attempt to capture experiences from
various types of migration flows: South/North; South/South; East/West (in the
case of Europe);
• Given the unique nature of the subject matter: “migration and mobility”, selection
and funding considerations should go beyond traditional criteria – emphasis on
participants from the south- to consider also the case of migrants from the south
resident in the north or south. Relevance and competence in terms of issues and
experiences should be overriding considerations in this case.

Migrant Forum in Asia invited to Join the Task force for CSO Hearings ! ! !

Migrant Forum in Asia, a regional network of non-government organizations (NGOs), associations and trade unions of migrant workers, and individual advocates in Asia that are committed to protect and promote the rights and welfare of migrant workers was invited to join the "Task Force" convened by the United Nations (UN) President of the General Assembly to help ensure effective and active participation of stakeholders in the informal interactive hearings to be held on 12 July 2006. The interactive hearings is part of the the lead up activities in preparation to the High-level Dialogue on migration and development scheduled for 14-15 September 2006.

Details on the task force can be found in the following link:

http://www.un.org/esa/population/hldmigration/Text/Task-Force_Terms-of-Reference.pdf

2006 PGA's TASK FORCE on Hearings for the High Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development

2006 PGA’s TASK FORCE on Hearings for the High Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development

Terms of Reference

The President of the General Assembly is convening a ‘Task Force’ of civil society and private sector representatives as well as UN focal points to help ensure effective and active participation of stakeholders in the informal interactive hearings to be held on 12 July 2006, in the lead up to the High-level Dialogue on migration and development scheduled for 14-15 September 2006.

The Task Force will report to the President and seek to provide a link into the U.N. for some of the key civil society and private sector groupings and coalitions interested to contribute to the debate on international migration and development.

I Mission of the Task Force:

The Civil Society Task Force will help support the General Assembly President and his Office in key decisions relating to the attendance and participation of civil society and private sector organizations in the GA informal interactive hearings on migration and development, as well as contribute to format, topics for discussion and list of speakers for this event.

II Composition of PGA’s Task Force:

A Task Force of 8 individuals from NGOs, civil society, the private sector and U.N. departments will be comprised of the following:

A representative of NGO Network from sending countries
A representative of NGO Network from receiving countries
A representative of a development NGO Network
A representative of a migrants’ network
A representative of a human rights organization
A representative of a youth organization
A representative of the trade union movement
A representative of a faith-based organization dealing with migration
A representative of the private/business sector

Individuals will be invited following consultation and advice from a UN inter-departmental group consisting of officials from the Office of the President of the General Assembly (OPGA), DGACM, DESA Population Division, NGLS, DESA-NGO Section, UNFPA and the Global Compact. This group will look to ensure that collectively the Task Force representatives:

- represent all key geographical regions;
- are able to speak on behalf of a large constituency or network;
- have worked on issues relating to international migration and development;
- are gender sensitive and gender balanced.

Task Force members will be selected on the understanding they can commit to volunteer the appropriate time and effort from April to July 2006.

The General Assembly President’s Office will be chairing the Task Force. Representatives from DESA Population Division, DGACM, UNDP-CSO Division, NGLS, Global Compact, DPI, DESA NGO section, DESA-Division for the Advancement of Women, DESA-Division on Financing for Development, DESA-Youth Unit and UNFPA would also be invited to attend.

III Activities for the Task Force include:

Modus Operandi

Weekly or bi-weekly meetings/conference calls to be chaired by OPGA or a designated chair
Communication via email

Task Force to advise the President on:

Shaping the design for the informal interactive hearings, including format, topics for discussion and list of speakers

  • Working with broader civil society and private sector groupings to identify key speakers for the hearings
  • Communicating key issues to broader civil society and private sector groupings to keep them informed of pertinent developments
  • Preparation and briefing for the civil society participants and speakers
  • Recommend civil society and private sector representatives for press conference
  • Selection of civil society and private sector speakers for high-level dialogue

    Task Force to advise on:

    Advising on logistical issues and needs for civil society attending the hearings
    Post-hearings debriefing

IV Task Force Timeline:

Agree Terms of Reference (send invitation)
19 April

Disseminate general information on hearings
20-30 April

Initial Conference Call of the Task Force:
- Design selection process of participants
21 April

2nd Task Force Meeting/Call:
- Design selection process of participants
- Discuss agenda/format for hearings
28 April

Deadline for submission of nomination form by NGOs, CSOs and private sector organizations interested to participate in the hearings
1 May

3rd Task Force Meeting/Call:
- Prepare for selection of participants and speakers
- Discuss agenda/format for hearings
5 May

Initial List of Participants for Hearings Submitted
8 May
4th Task Force Meeting:
- Follow-up on invitation of selected participants
- Set up short list of replacements (participants)
- Discuss agenda/format for hearings
- Discuss list of speakers for hearings
12 May

5th Task Force Meeting:
- Follow-up on invitation of selected participants
- Follow-up on replacements
- Finalize agenda/format for hearings
- Discuss list of speakers for hearings
19 May

6th Task Force Meeting:
- Follow-up on replacements
- Finalize list of speakers
- Discuss preparatory briefing for hearings
- Communicate to applicants who is invited to participate
31 May

7th Task Force Meeting:
- Finalize format of preparatory briefing
- Follow-up on list of speakers
- Follow-up on list of participants
2 June

Briefing for participants and speakers at the briefing
11 July
GA Informal Interactive Hearings
12 July

8th Task Force Meeting: Postmortem on hearings
Selection of CSO/PS speaker for September High-Level Meeting
Week of 17 July

Civil Society Hearings on Migration: Orientation Hearings

Civil Society Hearings on Migration
Orientation Meeting, 11 July 2006

The meeting will take place at the Church Center, located at the corner of 44th Street and
1st Avenue, New York, on the second floor and in other rooms, to be requested. No special
building pass is required to enter the building.

The meeting will serve as a preparatory event for NGOs/CSOs/the private sector, prior to
their interactive dialogue with UN Member States at the hearings on 12 July. It will
allow speakers, spokespersons and attendees to be briefed on the background, logistics
and organizational aspects of the hearings, on their respective roles, and on strategies to
enhance their participation. The objective is to ensure that the Hearings become an
important entry point for NGOs/CSOs/the private sector, into the High Level Dialogue on
International Migration and Development, to be held at UN Headquarters on 14-15 September 2006.

The meeting will also provide an opportunity for civil society representatives to network
among themselves and with various UN agencies and programmes as well as other
international organizations involved in international migration issues. Speakers and
spokespersons will interact in thematic and regional breakout sessions with other civil
society actors, thereby working towards effective and coordinated messages for
presentation at the Hearings on 12 July and an informal working lunch with several UN
agencies, the IOM and the World Bank will take place from 12.30 to 2.30.

9:30- 10:15 Orientation
Welcoming remarks and general introduction
Vice President of the General Assembly (TBA)
General landscape of migration - background of Secretary General’s Report.
Mr. Gregory Maniatis, DESA (TBA)
Presentation of the Secretary General’s Report
Ms. Hania Zlotnik, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population
Division

10:15-11:00 Objectives and Logistics: Background and expectations for the day
Ms. Gemma Adaba - Task Force Member
Ms. Elisa Peter – United Nations Non Governmental Liaison Service
Ms. Shamina de Gonzaga – Office of the President of the General Assembly

11:15-12:30 p.m. Thematic Breakout Sessions
The sessions will feature small group discussion focused on the themes of the four panels
of the hearings. These are as follows:
Session 1. Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach to international migration,
and ensuring respect for and protection of human rights of all migrants and their families.
Session 2. International migration and development – challenges for social and economic
policies in sending and receiving countries.
Session 3. International migration and development cont’d – challenges for social and
economic policies in sending and receiving countries.
Session 4. Policy responses – Promoting the building of partnerships and capacitybuilding and the sharing of best practices at all levels, including the bilateral and regional levels, for the benefit of countries and migrants alike.

12:30-2:30 p.m. Informal Interactive Working Lunch, sponsored by IOM
Lunch will be a round table event featuring tables presided over by representatives from
the International Organization on Migration (IOM), UNIFEM, UNICEF, UNFPA,
UNITAR and the World Bank. The working lunch will provide an opportunity for
participants to learn about the organizations and agencies’ migration-related programmes
and projects and will give participants a chance to network and discuss issues of
importance to them.

2:30-3:45 p.m. Regional Breakout Sessions
Small groups will discuss regional migration concerns.

4:00-5:00 p.m. Plenary Session
Rapporteurs from the breakout sessions will present conclusions and recommendations
from each group.

Notes: The Secretary General’s Report on Migration will serve as the background for all
discussions in both the thematic and regional breakout sessions.
Eight designated facilitators will implement breakout groups, set guidelines, generate
questions for discussion, and keep time. Rapporteurs, who will present the conclusions
and recommendations of their groups at the plenary session that will close the meeting.

Collection and Editing of reports: Rapporteurs from the breakout sessions will be
responsible for production of the conclusions and recommendations of their particular
session. Interns with laptops will facilitate collection, collation and editing of these
reports for distribution to participants at the end of the hearings on July 12.

Click on the link below for more information

http://www.un.org/esa/population/hldmigration/NGO_Hearings.html

Civil Society Organizations Hearings to Prepare for The UNHLD ! ! !

Informal Interactive Hearings with NGOs, Civil Society and the Private Sector - 12 July 2006

As part of the preparatory activities leading to the High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development, the General Assembly will hold Informal Interactive Hearings with representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs), civil society organizations and the private sector on 12 July 2006 at United Nations headquarters in New York. The objective of the Informal Interactive Hearings is to provide an opportunity for NGOs, civil society and the private sector to interact with Member States and offer input for the High-level Dialogue.
“I attach great importance to the Informal Interactive Hearings of the General Assembly with Non-Governmental Organizations, Civil Society Organizations and the Private Sector on International Migration and Development, which will take place on 12 July 2006 at United Nations Headquarters in New York. It is critical that Member States have an exchange of views with a wide range of constituencies, including migrants themselves, when they are preparing for the High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development in September.”Kofi AnnanUnited Nations Secretary-General

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Secretary General Appoints Peter Sutherland as Special Representative for Migration

23/01/2006
Secretary-General
SG/A/976 BIO/3735
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York
SECRETARY-GENERAL APPOINTS PETER SUTHERLAND AS SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR MIGRATION

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan is delighted to announce that Peter Sutherland has agreed to act as his Special Representative to assist in the preparation of the high-level dialogue on international migration and development, to be held by the General Assembly in September.

Mr. Sutherland -- a former Attorney General of Ireland, former European Union Commissioner and former Director-General of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade and the World Trade Organization -- is currently Chairman of BP plc. He is also an honorary Ambassador for United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), and has previously been a member of the Commission on Human Security (the idea for which was launched at the United Nations Millennium Summit in 2000). He has indicated that he wishes his new assignment to be on a pro bono basis.

The General Assembly has requested the Secretary-General “to prepare a comprehensive overview of studies and analyses on the multidimensional aspects of migration and development, including the effects of migration on economic and social development in developed and developing countries, and on the effects of the movements of highly skilled migrant workers and those with advanced education”, while also addressing short-term and seasonal workers within the context of labour movements. The Secretary-General hopes to provide this overview, drawing on various inputs, including in particular the report and recommendations of the Global Commission on International Migration, at latest by the end of May. He looks forward to benefiting from the advice of Mr. Sutherland, as well as other experts, in the preparation of the overview, and he relies on him to help bring it to the attention of Member States at the highest level during the run-up to the high-level dialogue.

Mr. Sutherland said today: “Migration can be an enormous force for good: one of the great drivers of economic growth, individual liberty and personal prosperity. As such, I am delighted to undertake this assignment for Kofi Annan. The goal is to maximise the benefits of migration and minimise potentially negative impacts.”

See biographical details below:

Peter D. Sutherland is Chairman of BP plc (1997 - current). He is also Chairman of Goldman Sachs International (1995 - current).

Of Irish nationality, he was born on 25 April 1946 and was educated at Gonzaga College, University College Dublin and the King’s Inns. Mr. Sutherland graduated in Civil Law. He was also admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States of America. From 1969 to 1981 he practised at the Bar. He is a Bencher of the Middle Temple, London and is an Honorary Bencher of the King’s Inns.

In addition to his Chairmanships listed above, he also serves on the Board of Directors of the Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc, and is associated with the following organizations: Trilateral Commission (Europe), Chairman; World Economic Forum, Foundation Board Member; the European Institute (United States), Director; Chief Executive’s Council of International Advisers, Hong Kong; the Federal Trust, President; Chairman of the Consultative Board of the Director-General of the World Trade Organization; and Goodwill Ambassador to the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (2 March 2005).

Prior to his current position, Mr Sutherland served as: Attorney General of Ireland (1981-1984); European Commissioner responsible for Competition Policy (1985-1989); Chairman of Allied Irish Banks (1989-1993); and Director-General of the World Trade Organization, formerly GATT (1993-1995).

His awards include an honorary Knighthood (United Kingdom 2004), the Gold Medal of the European Parliament (1988), the First European Law Prize (Paris 1988), the David Rockefeller International Leadership Award (1998), the Grand Cross of Civil Merit (Spain 1989), the Grand Cross of King Leopold II (Belgium 1989), the New Zealand Commemorative Medal (1990), Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur (France 1993) Commandeur du Wissam (Morocco 1994) the Order of Rio Branco (Brazil 1996) and the Grand Cross of the Order of Infante Dom Henrique (Portugal 1998). He was also presented with the Robert Schuman Medal for his work for European Integration. Furthermore, he received the European Person of the Year Award (1988), the Irish People of the Year Award (1989), the Consumer for World Trade Annual Award (1994) for distinguished service, and the Dean’s Medal (1996) from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.

He has received 14 honorary doctorates from universities in Europe and America. He was awarded an honorary fellowship of the London Business School in recognition of his contribution to business and trade (1997).

His publications include the book Premier Janvier 1993 ce qui va changer en Europe (1989) and numerous articles in law journals. He chaired the Committee that reported to the European Economic Community (EEC) Commission on the functioning of the Internal Market after 1992 (the Sutherland Report).

Mr Sutherland is married and has three children. His leisure interests include reading and sport.

For the Official UN announcement click on the link below:

http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2006/sga976.doc.htm

Organization of the High Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development

United Nations A/60/864

General Assembly Distr.: General

26 May 2006
Original: English
06-36555 (E) 010606

*0636555*

Sixtieth session
Agenda item 54 (c)

Globalization and interdependence: international
migration and development

Organization of the High-level Dialogue on
International Migration and Development


United Nations Headquarters, 14 and 15 September 2006

Note by the Secretary-General

I. Introduction

1. The General Assembly, in its resolution 58/208 of 23 December 2003, decided
to devote a high-level dialogue to international migration and development in 2006
during its sixty-first session, in accordance with the rules and procedures of the
Assembly, with modalities to be decided upon. In the same resolution it requested
the Secretary-General to report to the General Assembly at its sixtieth session on the
organizational details of the High-level Dialogue. This request was reconfirmed by
the Assembly in its resolution 59/241 of 22 December 2004.

2. At its sixtieth session, the General Assembly, in its resolution 60/227 of
23 December 2005, decided to convene the High-level Dialogue on International
Migration and Development in New York on 14 and 15 September 2006 to discuss
the overall theme of the multidimensional aspects of international migration and
development in order to identify appropriate ways and means to maximize its
development benefits and minimize its negative impacts.
3. In the same resolution the General Assembly decided that the High-level
Dialogue would consist of four plenary meetings and four interactive round tables,
within existing resources. It further decided on the organization and themes for the
four round tables.

4. Recognizing the importance of the contribution of civil society in the
preparatory process of the High-level Dialogue, the General Assembly decided to
hold, within existing resources, one-day informal interactive hearings with
representatives of non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations and
the private sector.


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5. The General Assembly invited the President of the General Assembly, within
existing resources, in consultation with Member States, and with the assistance of
the Secretariat, to organize prior to the High-level Dialogue up to two panel
discussions with a focus on its overall theme.

6. The General Assembly also invited relevant United Nations agencies, funds
and programmes, as well as the International Organization for Migration, to
contribute to the preparation of the High-level Dialogue.

7. The General Assembly further invited the regional commissions to contribute
to and coordinate dialogue at the regional level in preparation for the High-level
Dialogue, and also invited appropriate regional consultative processes and other
major initiatives undertaken by Member States in the field of international migration
to contribute to the High-level Dialogue.

8. The General Assembly reiterated that the outcome of the High-level Dialogue
would be a Chairperson’s summary, which would be widely distributed to Member
States, observers, United Nations agencies and other appropriate organizations.

9. In addition, the General Assembly requested the Secretary-General to prepare
a note on the organization of work of the High-level Dialogue. The present note is in
response to that request.

II. Organizational arrangements

A. Plenary meetings

10. The High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development will
consist of four plenary meetings, as follows:
Thursday, 14 September 2006, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 3 p.m. to
6 p.m. Friday, 15 September 2006, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.

11. Introductory statements will be made by the President of the General
Assembly, the President of the Economic and Social Council and the
Secretary-General at the opening of the plenary meeting on Thursday morning,
14 September.

12. The High-level Dialogue will be open to the participation of Member States,
which are invited to participate at the ministerial or highest level possible; the Holy
See, in its capacity as Observer State, and Palestine, in its capacity as observer, the
International Organization for Migration, as well as other intergovernmental entities
and organizations having received a standing invitation to participate as observers in
the sessions and the work of the General Assembly and the relevant United Nations
agencies, funds and programmes. Participation will be in accordance with the rules
of procedure of the General Assembly.

13. In order to accommodate all the speakers, statements will be limited to four
minutes, on the understanding that that would not preclude the distribution of more
extensive texts.




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14. Summaries of the deliberations of the four round tables will be presented
orally by the chairpersons of the round tables at the concluding plenary meeting of
the High-level Dialogue (see also para. 24).

B. Interactive round tables

15. The High-level Dialogue will hold four interactive round tables, as follows:
Thursday, 14 September 2006, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Round table 1: Effects of international migration on economic and
social development.

Round table 2: Measures to ensure respect for and protection of the
human rights of all migrants, and to prevent and combat
smuggling of migrants and trafficking in persons.
Friday, 15 September 2006, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Round table 3: Multidimensional aspects of international migration and
development, including remittances.

Round table 4: Promoting the building of partnerships and capacitybuilding
and the sharing of best practices at all levels,
including the bilateral and regional levels, for the benefit
of countries and migrants alike.

16. The four round tables will have 40 to 48 seats each for heads of delegation and
other participants in the round tables. Each head of delegation attending a round
table may be accompanied by one adviser.

17. All other participants in the High-level Dialogue will be able to follow the
proceedings of the round tables via a closed-circuit television in the overflow
rooms.

18. The chairpersons of the four round tables shall be Ministers from the African
States, the Eastern European States, the Latin American and Caribbean States, and
the Western European and other States. Those four chairpersons shall be selected by
their respective regional groups in consultation with the President of the General
Assembly.

19. The composition of the four round tables will be subject to the principle of
equitable geographical distribution. Thus, for each regional group, the distribution
of its members for participation in each round table shall be made in the following
manner:

(a) African States: 11 Member States;
(b) Asian States: 11 Member States;
(c) Eastern European States: five Member States;
(d) Latin American and Caribbean States: seven Member States;
(e) Western European and other States: six Member States.

20. Each delegation will be requested to indicate its preference for one of the
round tables to the chairperson of its respective regional group. Space permitting,

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delegations may be able to attend more than one round table. The chairpersons of
each regional group shall communicate to the President of the General Assembly
which of its members wishes to participate in each round table, ensuring that
equitable geographical distribution is maintained and allowing for some flexibility.
Member States are encouraged to be represented at the round tables at the highest
possible level.

21. A Member State that is not a member of any of the regional groups may
participate in a round table to be determined in consultation with the President of
the General Assembly. The Holy See, in its capacity as Observer State, and
Palestine, in its capacity as observer, the International Organization for Migration,
as well as other intergovernmental entities and organizations having received a
standing invitation to participate as observers in the sessions and the work of the
General Assembly may each participate in a round table to be determined in
consultation with the President of the General Assembly.

22. Each round table may accommodate up to four heads of entities of the United
Nations system, determined in consultation with the President of the General
Assembly.

23. Pursuant to resolution 60/227, representatives of non-governmental
organizations in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, civil
society organizations and the private sector, one from each grouping having been
selected during the informal interactive hearings, may also participate in each of the
round tables of the High-level Dialogue. The President of the General Assembly
will determine the list of such representatives, taking into account the principle of
equitable geographical representation, in consultation with Member States (see also
para. 36).

24. Summaries of the deliberations of the four round tables will be presented
orally by the chairpersons of the round tables at the concluding plenary meeting of
the High-level Dialogue (see also para. 14).

25. The round tables will be closed to the media and the general public.
C. Panel discussions

26. The panel discussions will take place as follows:

Panel discussion 1: Thursday, 8 June 2006, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
in New York

Panel discussion 2: Tuesday, 4 July 2006, from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
in Geneva

27. The panellists will be selected by the President of the General Assembly. They
may include heads of relevant United Nations agencies, funds, programmes and
regional commissions, as well as the International Organization for Migration.

28. The panel discussions will be open to the participation of Member States, the
Holy See, in its capacity as Observer State, Palestine, in its capacity as observer, and
other intergovernmental entities and organizations having received a standing
invitation to participate as observers in the sessions and the work of the
General Assembly.
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29. Representatives of non-governmental organizations in consultative status with
the Economic and Social Council, civil society organizations and the private sector
may also attend the panel discussions.

D. Informal interactive hearings

30. The one-day informal interactive hearings with representatives of
non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations and the private sector
will be held on Wednesday, 12 July 2006, and will be presided over by the President
of the General Assembly.

31. The hearings will consist of two meetings. Each meeting will comprise two
sequential segments and will consist of brief presentations by invited participants
from non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations and the private
sector.

32. Following the presentations, there will be an interactive discussion with
alternate interventions from Member States and invited participants from
non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations and the private sector.
Those intervening will be requested to identify themselves prior to their intervention
and will be allowed a maximum of two minutes each to speak.

33. The meetings shall take place as follows:
Wednesday, 12 July 2006, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Segment 1: Promoting a comprehensive rights-based approach to
international migration, and ensuring respect for and
protection of the human rights of all migrants and their
families.

Segment 2: International migration and development — challenges
for social and economic policies in sending and
receiving countries.
Wednesday, 12 July 2006, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Segment 3: International migration and development — challenges
for social and economic policies in sending and
receiving countries (continued).

Segment 4: Policy responses — promoting the building of
partnerships and capacity-building and the sharing of
best practices at all levels, including the bilateral and
regional levels, for the benefit of countries and migrants
alike.

34. The hearings will be open to the participation of accredited representatives of
non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, the private sector,
Member States and observers of the General Assembly.

35. The President of the General Assembly will determine the list of invited
participants and the exact format and organization of the hearings, in consultation
with Member States and representatives of non-governmental organizations in


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consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, civil society
organizations and the private sector.

36. Pursuant to resolution 60/227, representatives of non-governmental
organizations in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, civil
society organizations and the private sector, one from each grouping having been
selected during the informal interactive hearings, may also participate in each of the
round tables of the High-level Dialogue. The President of the General Assembly
will determine the list of such representatives, taking into account the principle of
equitable geographical representation, in consultation with Member States (see also
para. 23).

37. A summary of the hearings will be prepared by the President of the
General Assembly prior to the High-level Dialogue on International Migration and
Development.


For the PDF version of the above text pls. click on the link below:

http://daccessdds.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/N06/365/55/PDF/N0636555.pdf?OpenElement


For the official website of the UN High Level Dialogue please click on the link below:

http://www.un.org/esa/population/hldmigration/