The Methodology and Application of a Migration with Dignity Framework
Shanna N. McClain*,, Carl Bruch*, and Mai Fujii**
*Environmental Law Institute
1730 M Street NW, Suite 700, Washington, D.C. 20036, USA
**Ocean Policy Research Institute, Sasakawa Peace Foundation, Tokyo, Japan
The scale of migration is increasing, and while great uncertainty exists in identifying exact numbers, the estimated number of international migrants is already surpassing 2050 projections in the order of 2.6%, or 230 million. As people migrate, they face a number of challenges including exposure to disease and other health threats, violence and assualt, trafficking and unlawful detention. However, of the protections available to migrants, the implementation and realization of these protections and how they impact the individual experiences of migrants and their loss of human rights and dignity rights across the migration cycle, are lacking. In acknowledgement of this, McClain et al. developed a legal and policy framework for Migration with Dignity, which identified six fundamental elements central to the migration experience that can supplement and support the implementation of migrant protections. The framework was built upon the foundational policy of former President of Kiribati, Anote Tong, who understood the climate change was impacting the lives and livelihoods of his people and that in the face of diminishing land area and opportunities, that the Kiribati should have the opportunity to determine when and how they migrate, and that in doing so that they are able to live a life that is equal to or better than the one they left behind. The Migration with Dignity framework offers an opportunity to provide policy and legal options to governments, policy makers, and NGO’s for how to improve to consider the dignity of migrants while they move, and improve the transition of migrants into new settings, while also fostering opportunities for improved livelihoods. However, in order to provide these opportunities, the framework would benefit from additional application of the fundamental elements across different contexts and in different settings. With this in mind, this article provides the necessary methodology for considering the social and legal dimensions of the framework, it also provides examples for how to apply the framework across multiple contexts.
-  International Organization for Migration, “World Migration Report,” 2020.
-  United Nations General Assembly Resolution, “Draft Convention relation to the Status of Refugees,” A/Res/429, December 1950.
-  United Nations General Assembly Resolution, “Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees,” A/RES/2198, December 1967.
-  United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), “UNHCR Viewpoint: ‘Refugee’ or ‘Migrant’ – Which is Right?,” July 2016, https://www.unhcr.org/news/latest/2016/7/55df0e556/unhcr-viewpoint-refugee-migrant-right.html [accessed December 15, 2021]
-  A. Tong, “Statement by H.E. President Anote Tong at the 69th UN General Assembly,” September 26, 2014.
-  C. Girard and S. Hennette-Vauchez, “Human Dignity: Survey on a Judicialization Process,” 2005.
-  United Nations, “Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” UN General Assembly Resolution 217A, 1948.
-  S. N. McClain, C. Bruch, E. Daly et al., “Migration with Dignity: A Legal and Policy Framework,” J. Disaster Res., Vol.17, No.3, pp. 292-300, 2022.
-  United Nations General Assembly, “The International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights,” UNGA Resolution 2200A (XXI), December 1966.
-  United Nations General Assembly, “International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,” UNGA Resolution 2200A (XXI), December 1966.
-  S. N. McClain, J. Seru, and H. Lajar, “Migration, Transition, and Livelihoods: A Comparative Analysis of Marshallese Pre-and Post-Migration to the United States,” J. Disaster Res., Vol.14, No.9, pp. 1262-1266, doi: 10.20965/jdr.2019.p1262, 2019.
-  Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, “The Invisible Majority,” November 2017.
-  Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, “Summary for Policymakers,” “Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis,” Contributions of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report, 2021.
-  Human Rights Council, “The Slow-onset Effects of Climate Change and Human Rights Protection for Cross-border Migrants,” “Annual Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and Reports of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Secretary-General,” A/HRC/37/CRP.4, March 2018.
-  S. N. McClain, C. Bruch, M. Nakayama, and M. Laelan, “Migration with Dignity: A Case Study on the Livelihood Transition of Marshallese to Springdale, Arkansas,” J. of Int. Migration and Integration, Vol.21, pp. 847-859, 2019.
-  S. Drinkall, J. Leung, C. Bruch, K. Micky, and S. Wells, “Migration with Dignity: A Case Study on the Livelihood Transition of Micronesians to Portland and Salem, Oregon,” J. Disaster Res., Vol.14, No.9, pp. 1267-1276, doi: 10.20965/jdr.2019.p1267, 2019.
-  R. Fujikura, M. Nakayama, S. N. McClain, and S. Drinkall, “Addressing the Health Problems After Immigration Faced by the Marshallese in Springdale, Arkansas: Lessons Learned from the City of Vienna,” J. Disaster Res., Vol.14, No.9, pp. 1309-1316, doi: 10.20965/jdr.2019.p1309, 2019.
-  International Organization for Migration Development Fund, “Migrant Women and Gender Violence: Strategies and Perspectives for Interventions,” 2015.
-  International Organization for Migration, “IOM Gender Equality Policy 2015-2019,” C/106/INF/8Rev.1, 2015.
-  International Organization for Migration, “Disability and unsafe migration: Data and policy, understanding the evidence,” Issue No.7, 2016.
-  International Organization for Migration, “Migration in the 2030 Agenda,” 2017.
-  International Organization for Migration, “Migrants and the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Initial Analysis,” 2020.
-  E. Ng, “Low-paid Migrant Workers Bear the Worst of Singapore’s Second COVID-19 Wave,” People’s World, April 10, 2020.
-  Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), “Immigrants by Sector,” April 2020.
This article is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 Internationa License.