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Migration and Displacement

December 2020

Quaker Statement on Migration

Working together American Friends Service Committee, Britain Yearly Meeting, Friends Committee for National Legislation, Quaker Council for European Affairs and Quaker United Nations Office have developed a statement on migration drawing on Quaker foundations and work with migrants and on migration. The core of the statement says:

Rooted in our belief that there is that of the sacred in everyone, our spiritual leading to uphold the inherent value and agency of every human being, and our commitment to building a world without violence, we are heartbroken by migration policy that dehumanizes some members of our human family on the basis of where they come from. We reject the notion that security for some can be achieved through means that use or result in violence and insecurity for others. We abhor the many forms of violence used in the management of migration and the effect current migration systems have in dividing our human family. 

We are committed to working for a world where dignity and rights are upheld regardless of migration status and not on the basis of citizenship or perceived deservedness.  Our faith calls us to work alone and with others for migration justice.  

Friends, Meetings and Quaker agencies and organizations around the world work for migration justice, bearing witness to the Quaker testimonies of peace and equality. Though our working methods may differ, the organizations that developed this statement are united by the shared vision expressed in this statement.

We encourage Meetings, Quaker organizations and Friends’ groups or associations to consider supporting the statement and signing on to it. 

If your organization, group or Meeting would like to sign on to support the statement or if you have questions about the statement or comments on it please email the Quaker UN Office’s Human Rights and Refugees team: Laurel Townhead ltownhead@quno.ch and Najmah Ali nali@quno.ch

The list of supporting Meetings, groups and organisations will be updated regularly and can be seen below: 

The Quaker Asylum and Refugee Network 

Quaker Earthcare Witness 

Esher Meeting

Trenton Meeting of Friends

West Brattleboro Quaker Worship Group

Montana Gathering of Friends 

Geneva Monthly Meeting

Switzerland Yearly Meeting

Honolulu Friends Meeting

St Andrews Local Meeting

Pima Monthly Meeting

Pittsburgh Friends Meeting

Midlothian Friends Meeting

Bridge City Friends Meeting

Sandpoint Friends Meeting 

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October 2020

Briefing Paper: Using the Regional Migration Reviews to Further Human Rights Protection

The Global Compact for Migration (GCM), adopted in 2018, is a significant commitment from governments to take a people centred and human rights based approach to migration policy and to work together towards this. The GCM invites regions to undertake reviews of the implementation of the compact every four years starting in 2020. These processes will feed into the International Migration Review Forum, also due to take place every four years, starting in 2022.

The 2020 Regional Migration Reviews are the first opportunity for States and others to reflect together on the initial steps taken and on how to make further progress to implement the GCM. They are also the first opportunity for detailed multilateral discussion on migration governance following the Covid-19 pandemic and to identify ways to adapt with the GCM as a guiding framework. 

This paper is intended to help migrants, NGOs and other stakeholders to engage with the Regional Migration Reviews as part of their work to improve the promotion and protection of the human rights of migrants.

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July 2020

'A lethal disregard': QUNO's written statement on the human rights of migrants at the 44th Human Rights Council

QUNO submitted this written statement on the occasion of the annual Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants at the 44th session of the Human Rights Council, drawing the Council's attention to the ongoing mortality and morbidity of people on the move all over the world. The statement complements an oral statement to be delivered during the Interactive Dialogue by QUNO's Representative for Human Rights and Refugees, Laurel Townhead. This statement forms part of QUNO's ongoing programme of work on the promotion and protection of the human rights of migrants. 

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December 2018

Briefing for Friends - A short guide for engaging with the Global Compact on Migration

On 10th December 2018, after a two year negotiation process, States formally adopted the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. As an international agreement determined to enhance cooperation on migration policy, the Global Compact provides an unprecedented opportunity to acknowledge that all countries are places of origin, transit and destination, and that States have a shared responsibility in their approach to people on the move. 

This briefing paper offers an explanation of the final text, a brief timeline of how it was developed, some suggestions of how Friends can use the document to support their witness and their activism, and a short description of what QUNO’s next steps will be. 

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December 2018

Foundations for Implementation (By Individual Objectives)

Foundations for Implementation is a guide to assist States in the implementation of the Global Compact for Migration. Here, you can view, download and print the guidance for each objective separately, or you may view the publication in its entirety at the link listed at the bottom of this page.

The publication brings together explicit existing recommendations drawn from the UN's Special Procedures and Treaty Bodies presented in line with the Compact's 23 objectives. The intention is that this publication will offer authoritative guidance to assist States in meeting the agreed objectives through practical actions

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November 2018

Foundations for Implementation

A guide to assist States in the implementation of the Global Compact for Migration. The publication brings together explicit existing recommendations drawn from the UN's Special Procedures and Treaty Bodies presented in line with the Compact's 23 objectives. The intention is that this publication will offer authoritative guidance to assist States in meeting the agreed objectives through practical actions.

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December 2017

Briefing for Friends: Human Rights of Migrants under the New York Declaration

The New York Declaration on Refugees and Migrants was adopted by States in September 2016 and initiated a two-year process to develop two ‘Global Compacts’ aimed at improving States’ response to refugees and migrants.  Our briefing paper provides an update on the development of the Global Compact on Migration over the past year and how the process is expected to proceed in 2018. QUNO has been working to support the adoption of a Global Compact on Migration that is ambitious, effective and human rights based.  This paper details how QUNO has been working on this issue and how Friends can engage with this process.

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November 2017

Joint Key Messages for a Human Rights Based Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration

The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration must be grounded in international human rights law. This is the central message of a new paper produced by a group of Geneva-based non-governmental organisations (NGOs) who are interested in a human rights-based response to migration at the UN level. QUNO convenes this informal group of NGOs, with a particular focus on ensuring a human rights basis to this new international agreement on migration, which is due to be adopted in 2018.

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September 2017

Friend's Briefing on Migration Addendum: Share your experiences

The processes to towards two new international agreements, ‘global compacts’, on refugees and migrants are now well underway and as part of the consultation phases, anyone is welcome to submit written information relevant to with or both of the global compacts. We are aware that many Friends are involved in activities on these issues, but we do not have the full breadth and depth, so we encourage you to share your experiences of your work with refugees and migrants. The attached short document explains how you can submit information to the global compacts, and what sort of information would be most useful.

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June 2017

Towards a Human Rights Based Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration: Paper #3: Implementation, Monitoring and Accountability Mechanisms

This paper presents examples of implementation, monitoring and accountability mechanisms under six multilateral agreements that we believe can be learnt from in considering how to achieve an effective global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration. The examples draw on a range of international agreements from different areas of policy and range from long-standing UN mechanisms to very recent agreements for which the specific means of implementation are still under negotiation. This paper hopes to assist stakeholders in considering some of the potential options for effective implementation of this new international agreement.

This paper is part of QUNO’s paper series, “Towards a Human Rights Based Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration,” a set of contributions to the global compact on migration process. To access these papers, please see this section of our website.

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April 2017

Towards a Human Rights Based Global Compact on Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration Paper 2: Expectations following the Agreement of Modalities Resolution

QUNO is closely following the process for negotiating a Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. This process part of the UN’s response to the large numbers of people on the move around the world. The Global Compact was mandated by the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, a high-level statement adopted by States on 19th September and is due to be adopted in September 2018.

Following the adoption on 6 April of General Assembly resolution 71/280 on the modalities for developing a Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, QUNO has prepared a short paper on expectations of the process.  This contains the steps which we believe are needed to support the adoption of a human rights based Global Compact (as called for in the New York Declaration and the modalities resolution). 

QUNO’s previous paper on the Compact, on input to the modalities resolution, is here.

February 2017

Briefing for Friends: Protecting Refugees and Migrants

On September 19th 2016, the UN set a new agenda under the ‘New York Declaration’ for responding to large movements of people crossing borders. Our briefing aims to inform Friends about the Declaration and the developments it initiates for improving global governance on refugees and migrants. It also describes how QUNO is engaging in these opportunities, as well as ways that Quakers around the world can link up with, and benefit from, UN level initiatives.

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January 2017

Briefing for Friends on opportunities and challenges for the protection of refugees and migrants at the UN level

On September 19th 2016, the UN set a new agenda under the ‘New York Declaration’ for responding to large movements of people crossing borders. Our briefing aims to inform Friends about the Declaration and developments it initiates. It also describes how QUNO is engaging in these opportunities, as well as ways that Quakers around the world can link up with, and benefit from, UN level initiatives.

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November 2016

Initial Input to Discussions on the Modalities Resolution for a Global Compact on Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration

QUNO is actively contributing to the process for negotiating a Global Compact on Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. This UN-level process is a major State-led response to the large numbers of people on the move around the world. It was mandated by the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, a high-level statement adopted by States on 19th September and will be finalised in 2018.

As States work towards drafting a resolution on the Modalities of this State-led process, QUNO has compiled an inputs paper which focusses on ensuring the human rights grounding (and compliance) of the Compact and the central role of civil society in the process.

This inputs paper makes several recommendations including:

  • Including human rights as a key message that cuts across thematic and regional consultations, and that this focus is grounded in existing international human rights law.
  • Using the Human Rights Council and other human rights mechanisms and expertise to make substantive contributions to the development of the Global Compact. 
  • Ensuring a central role for civil society (including migrants themselves) throughout the process.
  • Creating informal discussion spaces alongside the formal negotiations, as based on previous successful negotiations processes.

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December 2014

Geneva Reporter, October - December 2014

In this issue:

  • What is an NDC? Elements for a New Climate Agreement 
  • Drones: Transparency and Protection 
  • I Belong: Eradicating Statelessness 
  • Biological Diversity, Food Security and Small-scale Farmers’ Innovation 
  • Highlights from QUNO New York
  • News in Brief

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January 2003

Former Child Soldiers as Refugees in Germany

Published jointly with Terre des hommes Germany, this research concerns the experiences and circumstances of former child soldiers seeking asylum in Germany. It focuses on some of the problems these extremely vulnerable young persons face, and attempts to assess their needs. The study highlights challenges imposed by the asylum process, providing insights and recommendations that will be useful in other national contexts. The English edition, unlike the original German version, does not include detailed discussion on German asylum law and process, as it is intended for a broader audience.

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