Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA), together with the Global Coalition on Migration (GCM) and the MADE Network, organized and facilitated a parallel program to the official regional meeting of the Migrants in Countries in Crisis (MICIC) Initiative*. The parallel program of the civil society network was held on 21-22 March 2015 at the Crowne Regency in Makati City, Philippines, while the MICIC gathering organized by the IOM, the Philippine and US governments and other core group members took place on 23-24 March 2015 in Dusit Thani, also in Makati City.
In the civil society process, participants reviewed the analysis of global civil society on stranded migrants, migrants caught in crisis situations, and the perpetual crises that migrants face daily. This analysis has evolved and taken shape over many years of work with migrant communities and engaging in national, regional, and international government processes.
The MICIC Initiative seeks to address the protection needs of migrants in acute onset emergencies in destination countries. Governments and agencies involved in the MICIC Initiative have indicated that there is no specific protection framework to address the particular needs of migrants caught in countries experiencing crisis. This analysis falls short, as it fails to account for existing human rights frameworks that, if properly adopted and implement by States, would reduce migrants’ risks, decrease their vulnerability, and empower them as actors in emergency response strategies. As emergencies such as conflict and natural disasters are becoming the norm rather than the exception, it is crucial that governments move beyond humanitarian assistance and ground guiding principles for emergency responses in existing human rights frameworks.