By APD writer Melo M. Acuna
MANILA, Aug. 14 (APD) – More countries are expected to promote safe, orderly and regular migration practices after two years of successful negotiations which resulted into the draft Global Compact on Migration (GCM). The document is expected to be adopted by government leaders in Marrakech in Morocco this coming December.
“The fact that you got countries come together after years of negotiations is quite a historic agreement and monumental achievement for the world,” thus said International Office for Migration chief of mission to the Philippines Kristin Dadey said.
She was interviewed at the sidelines of the Manila-sponsored Future of Migration Conference at Conrad Hotel.
She said the GCM will have a great impact because it has brought the topic of migration where it should be, “at the forefront of global dialogue and discourse.”
Asked if the Global Compact on Migration would significantly reduce human trafficking, Ms. Dadey said while it may not be stopped completely, more attention, commitments and actions would be made by various governments with the so-called compact.
She added human trafficking is a horrific crime that affects countries. While world leaders committed to end modern-day slavery, Ms. Dadey said the private sector needs to play its role as well.
Ms. Dadey said human trafficking is driven by the desire for cheaper goods and services.
Asked about exploitation of migrants in the most vulnerable situations, Ms. Dadey said undocumented migrants are more often subjected to abuse.
“Workers protection is the host governments’ responsibility,” she added.
“Of course, there’s that desire to promote, safe and orderly migration but workers, whether legal or illegal, should be protected by host countries,” she said.
Although strong commitments have been made by various governments to promote the migrant workers’ well-being, there’s still a lot to be done because “implementation is the key.”
“Migration is not only beneficial to migrants but to the receiving countries as well,” Ms. Dadey said.
She commended the Philippine delegation led by Undersecretary Sarah Lou Y. Arriola to the GCM negotiations as the country has a strong advocate in President Rodrigo Duterte. Ms. Dadey said the Filipino chief executive has been consistent in his campaign to protect migrant workers.
“President Duterte has always said ‘Filipinos are slaves to no one,’” Ms. Dadey added. She said the Philippines should be congratulated for its strong advocacy efforts.
She explained migration is indeed here to stay.
Asked of IOM’s projects in the Philippines, Ms. Dadey said they have partnered with the government and the private sector to promote safe and orderly migration and stop trafficking.
“We’re also into programs helping people affected by natural and man-made calamities including armed conflict, specially in the southern island of Mindanao,” Ms. Dadey added.
(ASIA PACIFIC DAILY)