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Kerala GCM consultation September 23rd and 24th, 2019 in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

DATE: 17-Sep-2019

The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) was adopted in Marakkesh, Morocco in December 2018 by United Nations (UN) member countries.  Even though it is a non-binding agreement, it is an intergovernmentally negotiated instrument covering all aspects of international migration.  GCM aims to better manage migration at local, national, regional and global levels, including reducing the risks and vulnerabilities migrants or refugees face at different stages of their journey. Out of 193-member states, 164 countries have adopted the compact

The adoption of the compact has led to a wide range of discussions in and outside parliaments, especially in receiving states. There are 23 objectives and commitments list in the agreement which includes collecting and using accurate data to develop evidence-based migration policy, ensuring that all migrants have proof of identity, enhancing availability and flexibility for regular migration,   encouraging cooperation for tracking missing migrants, ensuring migrants access to basic services, and provisions for their full inclusion and social cohesion. It emphasizes the sovereign right of the states to determine their national migration policy. It lists actions for governments and calls for inclusive treatment for migrants irrespective of their status.

As a signatory of the compact and being one of the important sending countries, India is expected to play a pro-active role in the implementation of the 23 objectives.  The government-level disseminations about the content and discussions on the implications of it have not taken place. It is already 9 months since the passing of the compact and is high time to bring different actors in the migration process together, towards materializing the objectives.

International organizations like the International Labour Organization, Solidarity Centre and Migrant Forum Asia, who have played key role in the drafting and negotiations of the document have started to link different state and non-state agencies in the process internationally, regionally and nationally to take this compact forward. A South Asia Regional consultation took place in Kathmandu, Nepal in July 2019. In October a national level consultation will take place in Delhi. Trade Union and Civil Society consultations are taking place at state levels prior to the national consultation. Subsequently ILO is organizing a Central Trade Union consultation too.

As part of this the Kerala State Level consultation is taking place on 23rd and 24th September 2019 in Thiruvananthapuram. This consultation is technically and financially supported by ILO. This consultation will be discussions and deliberations with various actors including PoE, NORKA Labour Department and other government officials, trade Unions, civil society organizations, media, academicians and other stakeholders.The workshop has been designed in such a way that experts in each area of the objective will contribute according to their experience and expertise.