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GFMD Side Event – Humanitarian Protection, Admission And Stay In Disaster And Climate Change Contexts: Effective Practices In The Americas And Beyond

GFMD Side Event – Humanitarian protection, admission and stay in disaster and climate change contexts: Effective practices in the Americas and beyond

XII Global Forum on Migration and Development GFMD

HUMANITARIAN PROTECTION, ADMISSION AND STAY IN DISASTER AND CLIMATE CHANGE CONTEXTS: EFFECTIVE PRACTICES IN THE AMERICAS AND BEYOND 

Side Event

Tuesday, 21 January 2020

13:00-14:30

Room: Mitad del Mundo 1

Centro de Convenciones Metropolitano

   Quito, Ecuador

  1. Background

Every year millions of people are forced or compelled to leave their places of habitual residence because of floods, tropical storms, droughts, desertification, earthquakes and other natural hazards. The majority find refuge within their own country, but some have to move across an international border. While some movement is well documented, the total number of disaster displaced persons is unknown. Scientists project that climate change will increase disaster displacement in the future, both internally and across borders. Present international law does not provide a right to admission and stay for those compelled to leave their country of origin in disaster and climate change contexts.

Since its 2010 Summit in Mexico, the Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) has regularly discussed ways to address drivers of migration and displacement, be it conflict, human rights violations, climate change, disasters linked to natural hazards, or environmental degradation. The debates have also included the exchange of effective practices in terms of creating and establishing regular pathways, humanitarian visas and temporary protection for migrants and others compelled to move in such situations (e.g. climate change, disasters caused by natural hazards and environmental degradation).

Many of the possible actions, effective practices and policy instruments discussed and presented under the auspices of the GFMD have been included in the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), which was endorsed in a General Assembly Resolution on 19 December 2018 (A/RES/73/195). It is the first document negotiated in the framework of the United Nations in which the international community makes specific commitments to address the drivers that compel people to leave their countries of origin in the context of natural hazards, environmental degradation and the adverse effects of climate change, and to protect and assist those who are compelled to leave their countries in these contexts (see in particular objectives 2, 5, 21 and 23). Also, the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) adopted by the UN General Assembly on 17 December 2018 acknowledges and addresses the reality of increasing displacement in the context of disasters, environmental degradation and climate change, and provides a basis for measures to tackle the many challenges arising in this area.

  1. Aim and Scope of this Side Event at the GFMD Summit in Ecuador, Quito, 2020

This side event builds on past discussions of the GFMD, and situates them in the context of the implementation of the GCM, regarding concrete measures taken by Governments and other stakeholders to enhance the availability of safe passage and regular pathways for people who are forced or compelled to leave their countries of origin in the context of disasters and the adverse effects of climate change. The side event is also linked to and supports the substantive priorities of the Ecuadorian GFMD Chairmanship, for example regarding expected outcome of Roundtable 1.1: ‘Providing regular pathways from crisis to safety’.

The side event aims to present and highlight effective practices on admission and stay in disaster contexts at the national and regional level, and in particular, showcase innovation and policy guidelines being developed by Regional Consultative Process (RCPs). For example, member countries of the Regional Conference on Migration (RCM) in Central and North America, and the South American Conference on Migration (CSM) have developed and adopted regional non-binding guidelines on admission and stay in disaster and climate change contexts, based on national practice, policy and law in their respective regions.

Almost one year after the GCM was adopted and endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly, this side event will also seek to take stock of achievements made so far regarding disaster displacement and ways to prevent, reduce and address it. The side event will also seek to generate interest  in order to enhance action and scale up commitment and partnership with regards to addressing displacement and other forms of human mobility in the context of disasters, environmental degradation and the adverse effects of climate change, in ways which are consistent with international legal frameworks, standards and policy commitments.

  1. Format and methodology

The format of the side event will be a moderated, interactive roundtable discussion followed by short Q&A from the audience. The substantive focus is presentations and discussion of relevant effective practices and policy instruments by a select number of countries, regional and international organizations, including the Regional Processes on Migration in place in the Americas, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and UN agencies, representing various experiences responding to disaster displacement and ways to address it.

  1. Objective and expected results of the Side Event

The main objective of this side event is to provide an updated view on relevant policy development, including operational response to disaster displacement and safe pathways at global, regional and national levels to address displacement due to disasters and the adverse effects of climate change.

To this end, it is expected that this side event helps to:

  • Take stock of possibilities for coordination and follow up between the GFMD and other relevant global policy processes such as the GCM and GCR, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
  • Discuss best practices and policy options on the inclusion of human mobility caused by disasters and climate change at regional level, including Regional Consultative Processes (RCPs) and other regional organizations.
  • Raise awareness on the urgency for the development and implementation of practical steps and measures in addressing the humanitarian challenges people displaced by disasters face in all scenarios, including internal displacement and cross border displacement.
  1. Agenda (draft)
13:00 – 13:05 Welcome and opening remarks by the Government of France, Chair of the Platform on Disaster Displacement (PDD).
13:05 – 13:10 Introduction to the Side Event and introduction of Panelists by the Moderator.
13:10 – 13:50 Roundtable: Managing and addressing disaster displacement: what can be done at regional level?

·         Experiences and policy view from Regional Consultative Processes

          Regional Conference on Migration (RCM) and the South American Conference on Migration (SACM).

·         Following up to Brazil Declaration and Plan of Action

          United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

13:50 – 14:05 “Responding to displacement triggered by the effects of climate change and disasters: humanitarian implications on the ground “

(15 min)

International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

14:05 – 14:20 Q & A
14:20 – 14:30 Final remarks by the Government of Mexico, a member of the Steering Group of the Platform on Disaster Displacement.

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