Why the Global Compacts on Refugees and Migration Matter





For the past year, ABA ROLI has contributed to the global conversation about the development of "...the most significant international documents on migration and refugees in 20 years," also known as the Global Compact on Refugees and the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration

Critical to these contributions is Linda Bishai, the director of Research, Evaluation, and Learning (REL) at ABA ROLI, whose new Just Security article "It's a Start - Why the Global Compact on Refugees and Migration Matter" analyzes both the strides and shortcomings of the two compacts. While the two compacts are non-binding and "will not solve hard problems," they mark a departure from the previous "focus on emergency aid" as the appropriate response to migration and refugees, according to Bishai. Now, the compacts call for responses to identify additional related issues, as well as the "underlying reasons" that drive people to flee their country of origin. Read Bishai's full article here

In April and August, respectively, ABA ROLI's annual Issues Conference and Rule of Law Luncheon examined the critical role rule of law development serves in the global displacement crisis, as well as how the legal community can successfully assist migrants and refugees. In addition to the events, ABA ROLI's 2018 issues paper "When People Flee: Rule of Law and Forced Migration" explored the legal challenges that affect migrants and refugees, and included several recommendations for how to resolve them. 

Solutions to refugees and migration issues, according to fellow ABA ROLI REL expert and  co-author of the 2018 issues paper, Paula Rudnicka, can be found in the rule of law. In Rudnicka's recent International Law News article Integrating Rule of Law: New Solutions to the Global Displacement Crisis, she stated that the "rule of law development is indispensable both to the prevention and resolution of forced migration and to the protection of people who flee" and identifies four rule of law approaches to displacement: building just legal systems, promoting good governance, strengthening accountability mechanisms, and ensuring empowered protection.

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