Refugees and Migrants: Promoting Ecosystem Protection and Human Rights

Event Date: 
Wednesday, August 29, 2018

The IOM is organizing, together with WaterLex, the University of Geneva, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Geneva Water Hub, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), an event on "Refugees and Migrants: Promoting Ecosystem Protection and Human Rights."

The millions of migrants and refugees in transient accommodation create an environmental and a humanitarian crisis. To find long-term and sustainable solutions, we need to increase awareness of the connection between the right to a healthy environment, and its connection with the right to safe water and sanitation. These are both rights and obligations, not just of states, but also for every individual. Balancing the scientific approach with sustainable solutions is extremely challenging, as the intricacies of individual human agendas and politics often conflict with ecosystem protection and a holistic solution that considers all considerations, both human and ecological.

If we can strengthen the governance around community decision making such that all people are considered, whatever race, situation, gender, age, culture or disability, then the solutions are more likely to be both sustainable, and protective of human rights to water and sanitation. In this event, we plan to bring real case studies to light, with representative people from refugee situations, outlining the importance of inclusion and transparency in consultation processes, and how people’s rights to water and sanitation can be aligned with sustainable solutions, and can help to protect our environment as well as our people.

Day: 29 August 2018
Time: 14:00 - 15:30