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CSOs to Hold Own Global Migration Forum, Assail Official Event

Civil society groups will hold a parallel event to the 2nd Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD), which they fear will tackle only “managed migration” and the development side of migration. Teodoro Navea, representative of the Philippine working group, said the parallel event will be called the People’s Global Action on Migration, Development and Human Rights.

He said the week-long activity will be held since “migration is not the responsibility of the government alone but also of civil society groups.”

2nd GFMD

The Philippine government will host the 2nd Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) on October 27-30 with representatives from more than 100 countries expected to participate.

The forum seeks to complement efforts at the United Nations to protect and advance the rights of migrant workers.

The first GFMD was held in Brussels, Belgium in July 2007. Government and civil society delegates from 139 countries participated.

The GFMD developed as a regular forum following a meeting known as the High-Level Dialogue on Migration organized by the UN in New York in September 2006.

Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Esteban Conejos has said the GFMD will discuss “practical solutions” to problems faced by migrant workers.


Navea criticized the official GFMD saying it has “limited opportunities for mass participation and are already highly structured according to the desires and goals of the host governments.”

He said civil society’s parallel activity will focus on human rights abuses on migrants as well as the situation of migrants in their places of deployment.

The parallel activity is slated for October 22 to 30, 2008 at the Rajah Sulayman Park in Manila, while the GFMD will be held at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City.

Navea said the civil society event will be independent from the official GFMD process.

It will bring together concerned groups to discuss the problems caused by migration and how they can be addressed.

Participants will include migrant workers’ organizations, NGOs, trade groups, labor unions, faith-based organizations, women and representatives of the academe from Asia, Europe, Africa, America and Latin America.

by Julie Javellana, abs-cbnNEWS.com

Pinoy Migration, 7/12/2008 6:22 PM

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MFA is a regional network of non-government organizations (NGOs), associations and trade unions of migrant workers, and individual advocates in Asia who are committed to protect and promote the rights and welfare of migrant workers.

It is guided by a vision of an alternative world system based on respect for human rights and dignity, social justice, and gender equity, particularly for migrant workers.

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