The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed from a health crisis to a phenomenon which threatens global human and economic progress, including the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It is affecting the health, livelihood, income and security of people across the globe.
This period has seen the largest lockdown in history affecting the employment and livelihood of millions of people, especially workers in the informal sector and marginalized communities.
Migrants are among the most vulnerable categories during the crisis, especially migrant workers. Now, every country in the world has implemented border closures, travel restrictions, prohibitions on arrivals from certain areas, and heightened screening. Many migrants have experienced discriminatory policies, racism and xenophobia. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected millions of migrants working or studying abroad stranded away from home, with unequal or uncertain access to health and other critical services.
In societies across Asia civil society organizations (CSOs) become first responders, stepping up to fill the gaps left by governments and business. This report by Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA) provides an account of the extraordinary response and mobilization of civil society to this crisis. It seeks to capture a moment in history when the values of solidarity were expressed in multiple acts of kindness, generosity and advocacy, overcoming fear.
It draws on first hand reports and accounts of individuals and organizations who have been on the frontline in countries of origin and destination. Many have in effect been first responders. At a time when many governments were slow to act, or acted in ways that excluded, civil society led the way, responding from a commitment to shared human dignity.
Click the link below to download the full report: