UNESCO Handbook Helps LAC Cities Receive Migrants, Refugees
Photo by Peter Berko
story highlights

The Handbook was prepared in response to the global phenomenon of human mobility in urban areas.

It outlines a practical tool, which aims to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by facilitating, promoting and replicating implementation of local public policies aimed at helping migrants and refugees.

The tool highlights 13 possible lines of action to be implemented by local governments to deal with international human mobility from a human rights perspective.

23 August 2018: The International Centre for the Promotion of Human Rights of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICPHR-UNESCO) has published a handbook to help local governments in cities in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region better receive and integrate migrants and refugees.

The publication titled, ‘The SDGs and Cities: International Human Mobility,’ provides an overview of cities’ various strategies, initiatives and efforts. It includes a practical tool with 13 possible lines of action to be implemented by local governments to deal with international human mobility from a human rights perspective, and emphasizes social participation and the systematic production of information.

The 13-part practical tool focuses on migrant and refugee populations in vulnerable situations.

The tool aims to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by facilitating, promoting and replicating implementation of local public policies aimed at helping migrants and refugees. It focuses on migrant and refugee populations in vulnerable situations, and aims to enhance and promote the exchange of experiences and best practices regarding international human mobility in LAC cities.

According to the report, almost 80% of Latin American population lives in cities. The study notes that the proportion of the immigrant population is higher in cities as migrants tend to settle in large urban areas. This causes difficulties for local authorities to implement policies for integrating new inhabitants, related to the lack of resources, services and technical capacity.

The Handbook describes 13 actions, relevant implementation strategies, reasons such actions are needed, indicators and targets associated with SDGs 10 (reduced inequalities), 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions), 4 (quality education), 3 (good health and well-being), 8 (decent work and economic growth), 5 (gender equality) and 11 (sustainable cities and communities). The actions include:

  • Guarantee access of migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees to public policy-making processes (SDG targets 10.7 and 16.7);
  • Create a specific institution for caring for, receiving and integrating them (SDG targets 10.7, 16.6 and 16.b);
  • Provide training for local governments, focusing on rights (SDG targets 10.2, 10.7 and 16.b);
  • Develop anti-discriminatory campaigns that underscore “interculturality” for human and sustainable development (SDG targets 10.7 and 16.b);
  • Implement programmes that grant local identification and improve access to housing, health and education (SDG targets 10.2, 10.7, 11.1 and 16.9);
  • Complement curricula in schools and teacher training colleges with intercultural and bilingual education (SDG targets 4.1 and 10.7);
  • Develop skills improvement programmes (SDG targets 8.7, 8.8 and 10.7);
  • Implement programmes to care for women migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees that are victims of gender violence, and design strategies to raise awareness about this problem (SDG targets 5.1, 5.2, 10.7 and 16.1); and
  • Provide cultural mediators and interpreters for health and healthcare services (SDG targets 3.8 and 10.7).

Between 2000 and 2015, the number of international migrants worldwide increased from 173 million to 244 million. Around nine million international migrants live in LAC countries. International and regional organizations are advancing an agenda to promote safe migration and respect for migrants’ rights through the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, which will be adopted in December 2018 in Marrakesh, Morocco.

The Handbook was prepared in response to the global phenomenon of human mobility in urban areas. The UNESCO Regional Office for Science in LAC and the LAC Coalition of Cities against Racism, Discrimination and Xenophobia collaborated with ICPHR-UNESCO on the Handbook. [Publication: The SDGs and Cities: International Human Mobility: Practical Handbook for Local Governments in Latin America and the Caribbean] [UNESCO Press Release]


related events


related posts