One hundred and eight leaders participated in the “National Consultation on Migration” 20-22 March 2015 at the Indian Social Institute, Bangalore. The participants reflected on the issues and challenges presented by Migration across the country and explored possible ways of addressing this complex reality. VIVAT International-India, in collaboration with Indian Social Institute, organized and facilitated the consultation.
The prevalence and breadth of the issue of migration is rapidly expanding and opens new frontiers for mission and ministry for us. Thanks to the interventions and research papers, as well as the narration of the experiences on the ground by the resource persons, participants have a richer and more in depth understanding of how our communities are being impacted by the movement of peoples who are all in search of a better quality of life.
After our three days of collaborative exchange of ideas and experiences we share our joint understanding of migration.
We believe that:
- Restoring human dignity and rights, the right to life, and the right to safe movement is a challenge and calling that needs our concrete response.
- Migrants are human persons with potential to know, organize and work for their rights and dignity. They are entitled to rights and to claim their rights.
We realize that:
- Migration is inevitable. People migrate for many reasons, among them seeking a better standard of living and opportunities to earn a livelihood. However, economically and socially marginalized individuals and groups are often forced to migrate because their place of origin is often unsafe due to the loss of opportunities to have a livelihood or lack of security. They are vulnerable to exploitation and violence in their place of origin, throughout the migratory process and in the destination places. They are not recognized as important contributors to the national economy and to nation building.
- Dalits, Tribals, Women and Children are the most vulnerable populations in the migratory flows.
- The lack of a national policy on migration makes migrants vulnerable.
- Since migration is a multifaceted, multilayered, multi-dimensional, complex and complicated issue the response must be carefully crafted to be as comprehensive as possible. It requires us to join hands with likeminded groups and individuals. It is important to address migration both at source and destination levels.
- Invisibility, accessibility and information are three main gaps in addressing migration. We have to strategize our responses to arrive at a clarity of our involvement by seeing the reality, understanding it complexities, analyzing the factors and forces at play, strategizing our responses, networking and advocacy.
We commit ourselves:
- To grow in the conviction of addressing the issue of distress migration both at the source and destination points. We will enter into the lives of migrants, listening to their experiences, documenting their wisdom and reflecting on the lessons learned from them in all the areas where we work.
- To initiate actions to address the vulnerability of tribal and dalit migration, gender and migration and children’s issues both at source and destination places.
- To explore the possibility of forming solidarity groups of migrants.
- To establish VIVAT International India, its infrastructural mechanisms and guidelines based on vision-mission-objectives, goals.
- To network with civil society organizations, government organizations, movements and likeminded individuals.
- To strengthen VIVAT International India through sharing of effective practices and periodic reports.
- To create policy formation and service delivery program for migrants at the Congregational level in the Provinces.
- To facilitate and animate the member organizations in terms of capacity building, pooling and sharing resources, advocacy and lobbying for the cause of migrants.