Latest round of UN-led global consultations spotlights migrants’ contributions to development

25 July 2017

Although the net benefits of migration far outweigh its costs, the public perception is often the opposite, a senior United Nations official pointed out on 24 July, as the latest round of consultations on a global compact for migration began in New York.

"Such public perceptions and attitudes negatively influence sound migration policy choices," said Louise Arbour, UN Special Representative for International Migration, in her remarks to the session, which wraps up tomorrow at UN Headquarters in New York.

"This must be reversed so that policy is evidence-based and not perception-driven. Policies responding to false perceptions reinforce the apparent validity of these erroneous stereotypes and make recourse to proper policies that much harder," she added.

The consultation is the fourth in a series of six thematic consultations that will take place this year and feed into the drafting of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), expected to be adopted by UN Member States in 2018.

An outgrowth of the New York Declaration, adopted at a 2016 UN Summit on refugees and migrants, the Compact will be the first intergovernmentally negotiated agreement, prepared under the auspices of the UN, to cover all dimensions of international migration in a comprehensive manner.

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