Migration has become one of the most important social,
political and economic issue facing countries in the Western
Hemisphere today. In the last decade, most OAS member states
have become countries of origin, transit and destination for
migrants from throughout the region and the globe.
These modern migration patterns transcend the capacity of
State specific regulation. As a result, the promotion and
the protection of the human rights of migrants, including
migrant workers and their families, has not only become
an inescapable political and legal issue on the agenda of
individual state governments, but has also put the OAS at
the forefront of hemispheric efforts to ensure the
protection of the human rights of migrants.
In this capacity, the Department of International Law has
provided support to OAS political bodies and member states
in the drafting of the Inter-American Program for the
Promotion and Protection of the Human Rights of Migrants
including Migrant Workers and Their Families. The
Inter-American Program, adopted by the General Assembly in
2005 as the cornerstone in OAS efforts in this area, was
completed by a Working Group of the Committee on Juridical
and Political Affairs of the Permanent Council and was
approved by General Assembly Resolution [AG/RES.
2141 (XXXV-O/05)] in June 2005.
The Program is designed around a set of activities,
guidelines and best practices for OAS, member states,
international organizations and civil society to follow. The
basic purpose is to promote the exchange of best practices
and cooperation among sending, transit, and receiving
countries in order to fully respect and protect the human
rights of all migrants and promote more effective exchange
of information on legislation and migration policies.
The protection of the human rights of migrants is
fundamental to the hemisphere and the Inter-American program
represents an essential mechanisms in that effort.