BEBESEA successfully submitted a joint response to the call for input by the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights of Migrants, who has decided to to dedicate his forthcoming report to the 53rd session of the Human Rights Council to discuss how to expand and diversify regularisation mechanisms and programs to enhance the protection the human rights of migrants in irregular situations.
The joint response primarily draws on findings from our joint research during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as additional and most-recent information provided by practitioners who work in frontline organisations supporting migrants including those who are undocumented. Contributions to this joint response were given by four organisations; Indonesia’s NGO Coalition for International Human Rights Advocacy (HRWG), Serve the People Association (SPA), SBMI Malang and Trend Asia. The response was also endorsed by 10 other civil society organisations including one research institution.
“Regularisation process can facilitate the enjoyment of human rights by migrants holistically – civil political rights as well as economic, social and cultural rights – by allowing them improved access to social protection, including healthcare, decent work, education, adequate living conditions as well as family reunification.”
Our response highlights overall situations of migrants in irregular situations in East and Southeast Asia with several specific events and situations in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan.
We call for expansion of regularisation mechanisms for migrants in irregular situations, including people seeking asylum, that would lead to their long-term salutations and settlement.
“Any temporary status that does not lead to the rights to settlement in the destination country or legal status that is tied to particular employers or type of work, including income requirements, do not facilitate full enjoyment of human rights by migrants. Temporary registration leaves them no closer to finding a long-term solution to regularise their stay and are often systemic causes of human rights violations.”
We also highlight that “any regularisation process should also be implemented equally to all migrants, and not to be used discriminately for those who are considered “more deserving” such as those who are classified as ‘skilled workers.’ They should be implemented with a human-rights based approach, instead of an economic-driven policy.”