Type of practice: Awareness raising and communication tools
Name of Stakeholder: International Organization for Migration
Type of Stakeholder Implementing the Practice: International Organizations, Migrants and the Diaspora
Type of crisis: Conflict, Natural Disaster, Other
Crisis phase: Crisis Preparedness, Post-Crisis Action
"i am a migrant” is the UN Migration Agency’s platform to promote diversity and inclusion of migrants in society. It’s specifically designed to support volunteer groups, local authorities, companies, associations, groups, indeed, anyone of goodwill who is concerned about the hostile public discourse against migrants.
“i am a migrant” allows the voices of individuals to shine through and provides an honest insight into the triumphs and tribulations of migrants of all backgrounds and at all phases of their migratory journeys. While it aims to promote positive perceptions of migrants, it doesn't shy away from presenting life as it is experienced. It seeks to combat xenophobia and discrimination at a time when so many are exposed to negative narratives about migration – whether on social media feeds or on the airwaves.
The campaign uses the testimonials of migrants to connect people with the human stories of migration. The anecdotes and memories shared on the platform help us understand what words such as “integration”, “multiculturalism” and “diversity” truly mean.
- Empowering migrants
GUIDELINE 3: Empower migrants to help themselves, their families, and communities during and in the aftermath of crises
In order to help themselves and others and to enjoy their rights, migrants need access to identity documents, basic public services, and financial and other resources. Migrants’ ability to help themselves and enjoy their rights can be undermined by factors related to their entry and stay, means of arrival, connections to local populations, and conditions in the host State, including in workplaces. These factors can in turn undermine emergency response and recovery efforts.
States, private sector actors, international organizations, and civil society can promote migrants’ resilience and empower migrants to help themselves during and after a crisis by addressing underlying conditions of vulnerability. Respecting, protecting, and fulfilling migrants' human and labor rights in ordinary times advance these goals as do efforts to ensure migrants are able to access information, basic services, and administrative, judicial, and other redress mechanisms.
Legal, policy, and operational factors that constrain protection should be addressed. Examples of obstacles include laws, policies, and practical barriers that arbitrarily restrict the movement of migrants, enable arbitrary detention, discriminate between migrants and citizens in the provision of humanitarian assistance, or permit exploitative employment or recruitment practices.
In times of crisis, fear of immigration enforcement can inhibit migrants, particularly those in an irregular immigration status, from accessing necessary help. In this context, it is important to separate immigration enforcement actions from those that promote migrants’ access to services, humanitarian assistance, identity documents, and movement.
Stakeholders can provide migrants—prior to departure from the State of origin, upon arrival in the host State, and during their stay in the host State—with pertinent information related to country-specific conflict or natural disaster hotspots, rights and potential rights violations or abuses, ways to access timely, credible, and regular information, emergency contact points, and what to do and where to go in the event of a crisis. Building migrants’ skills to communicate in the host-State language and increasing migrants’ financial literacy may prompt migrants to invest in savings, take out micro-insurance, and better prepare for navigating unforeseen circumstances.
- Pre-departure and post-arrival training for migrants that includes crisis-related information.
- Positive communication about migrants, including through migrant role models and campaigns to promote tolerance, non-discrimination, inclusiveness, and respect.
- Financial products, including micro-insurance, savings accounts, and fast-cash loans that target migrants’ needs, including low-income migrants.
- Measures that respect, protect, and fulfill migrants’ human and labor rights, including addressing barriers that inhibit migrants’ ability to enjoy their rights.
- Identity cards for migrants in an irregular immigration status to promote their access to services.
- Ethical recruitment processes and accreditation, and integrity certification schemes.
- Community-based alternatives to detention for migrants.