GUIDELINE 5: Involve migrants in contingency planning and integrate their needs and capacities

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States, employers, recruiters and placement agencies, international organizations, and civil society have contingency plans and procedures to react to and mitigate the risks associated with crises. Many States of origin have contingency plans to assist their citizens abroad. If contingency plans do not exist, they should be developed during the pre-crisis phase to provide sufficient time to consider and test options.

Contingency plans should take into account and integrate migrants’ presence, potential needs, and capacities. Plans should anticipate migrants’ requirements for relocation, evacuation, communication, emergency shelter, food and non-food relief, health care, and psychosocial support. Plans should address ways to identify and respond to the needs of particularly vulnerable populations, such as migrant children, including unaccompanied and separated children, children of migrants in an irregular immigration status, migrant victims of trafficking, elderly migrants, and migrants with disabilities. Plans should also address the protection of migrants in detention. Contingency plans should be flexible, actionable, clear, and adapted to relevant regional, national, and local dynamics.

Involving migrants and civil society in the preparation of contingency plans can be particularly useful. Migrants and civil society can identify circumstances where targeted approaches are necessary to address the specific needs of migrants, such as language requirements. Employers and recruitment and placement agencies should be involved in contingency plans for migrant workers and their families.

Regularly updating and testing contingency plans can also be helpful to identify gaps and weaknesses in actions towards migrants and to ensure those charged with protecting migrants have the authority and capacity to do so. Joint contingency planning between emergency response actors and those working primarily with migrant populations can facilitate resource sharing and common understanding of risks, migrant populations, and local infrastructure. Contingency plans can include a crisis management structure that identifies responsibilities of different actors.

Sample Practices

  • Multi-stakeholder contingency plans to share resources and capacities to assist migrants, including by undertaking multi-stakeholder asset mapping exercises.
  • Crisis alert systems that monitor crises in host States and direct authorities to act based on the intensity of the crisis, such as obligation to evacuate migrants.
  • Evacuation plans that set out clear rules and criteria for carrying out evacuations, such as document requirements and eligibility for evacuation.
  • Emergency drills involving migrants to test contingency plans and identify obstacles and challenges.
  • Inter-agency contingency plans that take into account migrants’ potential needs in crises.
Country:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom
Type of Practice:
Government bodies

Part of the European External Action Service (EEAS)' Crisis Response Department, the Consular Crisis Management Division currently has two roles:

Country:
Mexico
Type of Practice:
Government bodies

Grupos Beta (Beta Groups) is a service by the National Institute of Migration (INM) of Mexico dedicated to the protection and defense of the human rights of migrants and are specialized in providing orientation, rescue and first aid, regardless of nationality or immigration status.

Country:
Italy
Type of Practice:
Mobile and internet-based technologies

"Where Are We In The World" is a service of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation that allows Italians temporarily abroad to report on their personal data on a voluntary basis in order to plan more quickly and precisely rescue operations.

Country:
Australia, Republic of Korea
Type of Practice:
Contingency plans

Like all Australian missions overseas, the Australian Embassy in Seoul maintains regularly updated consular contingency plans based on an ‘all hazards’ approach.

Country:
Global
Type of Practice:
Government bodies

This chapter on Consular Crisis Management of the US Government online Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM) provides additional guidance for consular officers in planning for consular crisis management and actually managing a crisis.

Country:
Global
Type of Practice:
Research and reports

This report summarizes the main themes and findings of an expert consultation on Planned Relocation, Disasters and Climate Change: Consolidating Good Practices and Preparing for the Future organized by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Brookings-LSE Project on...

Country:
Global
Type of Practice:
Contingency and preparedness plans

The Emergency Response Preparedness (ERP) approach is a practical, flexible, responsive and resource-light system for understanding and preparing for potential emergencies.

Country:
Global
Type of Practice:
Tools

The IFRC has engaged in a comprehensive analysis of smart practices that enhance the resilience of migrants, culminating in the development of a wide-ranging online database based around the findings.

Country:
Albania, Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Morocco, Portugal, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, San Marino, Serbia, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Ukraine
Type of Practice:
Trainings and capacity building

The Council of Europe’s European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA) and Intercultural cities programme (ICC) have joined their expertise to organise a workshop which explored the access and participation of migrants, refugees and asylums seekers to disaster prevention...

Country:
United States of America
Type of Practice:
Government Bodies

The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) was created in 1985 under the Federal Advisory Committee Act to promote security cooperation between American private sector interests worldwide and the U.S. Department of State.