GANHRI ANNUAL CONFERENCE
Ensuring human rights-based and gender-responsive
implementation, follow-up and review of the Global Compact for Migration: The
role of National Human Rights Institutions
Wednesday, 6 March 2019
10 to 18 hours, Room XVIII, Palais des Nations,
On 10 December 2018, the
international community adopted the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and
Regular Migration (Global Compact), in Marrakech, Morocco. The Global Compact
on Migration is a political agreement for improved migration governance at the
global, regional and national level, and shared principles to develop migration
policies that assure the respect of human rights.
The Global Compact presents
a historic opportunity to ensure human rights-based and gender-responsive
migration governance. However, the success of the Global Compact will depend on
how it is implemented and monitored, and the extent to which it makes a positive difference in
the lives of migrants and the populations in their countries of origin,
transit, and destination.
Whilst the Global
Compact was negotiated and adopted by States, there is a clear commitment to
implement, follow-up and review the Global Compact in cooperation and
partnership with all relevant stakeholders. National human rights institutions
(NHRIs) have an essential role, as recognised in the Global Compact.
institutions with a broad human rights mandate and functions in line with the
United Nations Paris Principles, NHRIs have been and can make significant
contributions to furthering the human rights-based
and gender-responsive implementation of the Global Compact, and have a
particular role to play in following-up and reviewing progress towards the
Global Compact’s objectives.
NHRIs play unique
bridging roles – between international, regional and national spheres; between
different government institutions; between government, civil society and
rights-holders; across a range of human rights and their State’s corresponding
international obligations and commitments.
This bridging role
positions them particularly well to help implement, follow-up and review the
Compact’s set of cross-cutting and interdependent guiding principles, including
and in particular the principles of people-centred, human rights-based,
gender-responsive, child-sensitive, whole-of-government and whole-of-society,
ensuring that implementation respects the rule of law and is rooted in the 2030
Agenda for Sustainable Development. They also have a key role in educating and
training on the human rights dimension of the Global Compact. Cooperating with
other NHRIs, and working collectively through their regional networks and
GANHRI, NHRIs are also well placed to address the cross-border nature of
In line with the
Paris Principles, NHRIs are vested with a broad set of functions and powers
which generally include research; legal and policy advice; education and
promotion; monitoring; investigating; handling complaints; cooperating with
other national, regional and international organisations; and interacting with
Each of these functions can be leveraged to make distinctive and valuable
contributions to the 23 objectives laid out in the Global Compact for Migration,
at all stages of implementation, follow-up and review, including in the development
of national implementation plans; monitoring of progress; and follow-up and
review, at national, regional and global levels.
Specifically, NHRI contributions may include:
- Promoting the
development and implementation of human rights-based and gender-responsive
national implementation plans: Whilst the Global Compact is universal, national
implementation plans will need to be developed that reflect national
contexts and that facilitate coordination, cooperation, implementation,
monitoring and review. NHRIs’ bridging roles – as outlined above –
uniquely position them to promote inclusive consultative processes for
priority-setting, policy-making, planning and budgeting – both locally and
nationally – that are human rights-based and people-centred,
gender-responsive and that adopt a whole-of-government and
governments on human rights-based and gender-responsive implementation: By assessing
laws, policies, administrative practices and budgets, NHRIs can provide
valuable advice to governments on how to contextualise and operationalise
the Global Compact in full compliance with international human rights. For
instance, NHRIs could conduct human rights impact assessments of specific
policies and programmes proposed or put in place to implement the Global
Compact, taking into specific consideration the multiple and intersecting
forms of discrimination that all migrants, and particularly migrant women
and girls, may face. They can assess existing policies and programmes through
the lens of human rights, not least as part of identifying priorities for
national action plans, but also to use the Global Compact as a nudge to
review existing practice that does not comply with human rights. Given
their advisory role, NHRIs are also well-placed to advise on how to
address inequalities and discrimination and develop strategies to promote
gender equality and the empowerment of migrant women and girls. NHRIs can also sensitize
authorities and public opinion, through training and teaching human
rights, to combat all forms of discrimination.
- Monitoring and
holding to account: NHRIs provide an independent, authoritative source
of information and a distinctive lens to collect and analyse data and
information, which can be used to evaluate whether efforts to implement
the Global Compact are respecting, protecting and fulfilling human rights
and addressing the specific needs of, and vulnerable situations faced by
groups in focus including migrant women and girls. NHRIs are also
well-placed to track and link the implementation of previous
recommendations of other human rights monitoring mechanisms including the Treaty
Bodies, the Special Procedures, and the Universal Periodic Review, as well
as the review and follow-up mechanisms of the 2030 Agenda and of regional
mechanisms, thereby promoting human rights-centred and system-wide
coherent implementation monitoring. NHRIs can also cooperate with other
NHRIs, which is essential given the cross-border nature of migration, and,
for example, exchange information about returnees and identify where
policies are putting people at risk.
patterns of inequality and discrimination: NHRIs are well-positioned
to look into systematic or structural problems with regard to
discrimination and inequalities in the context of migration. Their broad
functions such as investigations, complaints handling and reporting can be
used to evidence disadvantages and inequalities faced by migrants,
especially migrant women and girls, migrants in vulnerable situations, and
other groups in focus, while taking into consideration the multiple and
intersecting forms of discrimination they face.
contexts and institutional capacities vary widely, the Global Compact will be
of critical relevance to the work and mandates of NHRIs all over the world. A
number of concrete examples – across all regions – is illustrative of the kind
of contributions that NHRIs can, and already do make, to promote human
rights-based approaches to migration. Many NHRIs, however, also face obstacles
and challenges, including narrowly drawn mandates, constraints on their
independence, and lack of capacities. In addition, States often lack
responsiveness to NHRIs’ advice, and across regions public xenophobic
narratives are widespread.
importance of the Global Compact process as well as previous and ongoing
engagement by individual NHRIs relating to migration, GANHRI established a Task
Force on the Global Compact to coordinate the participation and contribution of
NHRIs – both in their individual capacity and collectively through their
regional networks and GANHRI - during the development of the Global Compact. It
is therefore imperative that NHRIs, together with other stakeholders, act with
speed to map out specific strategies and actions post adoption of the Global
The Annual Conference
will bring together participants from NHRIs from all regions, and their
partners from the UN and civil society, as well as Member States, to consider
the role and contributions of NHRIs towards ensuring human rights-based and
gender-responsive implementation, follow-up and review of the Global Compact.
NHRIs and other
stakeholders will have an opportunity to highlight initiatives already in
place, as well as identify challenges, and identify actions, partnerships and
innovative ideas they foresee as means of promoting gender-responsive implementation,
follow-up and review of the Global Compact in a way that respects, protects and
fulfils the human rights of all migrants and contributes to the empowerment of
women and girls.
also have an opportunity to identify opportunities for cooperation as well as
to discuss how the Global Compact architecture – including the International
Migration Review Forum, Capacity-Building Mechanism (CBM) and UN Network on
Migration – can help to strengthen NHRIs’ (including their global and regional
networks’) capacity, mandate, independence, and overall contributions to
migration and migration governance.
The Annual Conference
will focus specifically on the roles of NHRIs in relation to:
- Understanding the Global Compact
and the relevance of migration governance to the unique mandate of NHRIs: How does the
content of the Compact align with NHRIs’ aims and objectives and existing
strategies? How can NHRIs contribute to raising awareness of the Compact
and fact-based discussion of its contents and opportunities? What can be
learned from existing follow-up and review processes to make the regional
and international review fora effective? What can be learned from existing
national level processes for review and reporting to international bodies
to make review and reporting effective, inclusive and participatory?
implementation: What can be learned from human rights-based
national action planning processes that NHRIs have already contributed to?
How can the role of NHRIs be used to identify priority areas for implementation
that respects, protects and fulfills human rights? What role can NHRIs
play in establishing/supporting inclusive and participatory national
action planning? What role can NHRIs play in establishing/supporting
inclusive and participatory monitoring? How can NHRIs contribute to
ensuring that differential/discriminatory gendered impact of policies is
understood and countered? How can NHRIs create or support platforms for
women and girls to be actively engaged in policy development and monitoring?
- Regional and sub/cross-regional
cooperation: How can NHRIs
work together to highlight human rights violations and analyse regional
and international patterns? How can NHRIs work together to share good
practice in human rights-based implementation? What role should NHRIs play
in the regional review fora?
- Global Follow up
and Review: What role should NHRIs play in the
international review fora?
The Annual Conference
will conclude with a Statement, which will be developed and adopted by
participating NHRIs through a consultative process.
The Statement will serve as guidance for NHRIs’ future contributions towards
ensuring human rights-based and gender-responsive implementation of the Global
Compact, in line with their mandates and functions under the Paris Principles.
Concept note: EN FR SPA AR
The Annual Conference will be interpreted into
the four GANHRI languages Arabic, English, French and Spanish.
For further information please visit www.ganhri.org or
contact the GANHRI Geneva Representative Katharina Rose (firstname.lastname@example.org).