Migrants remain largely invisible across SDG data
SDG targets 10.7, 17.18 and many others require quality and regular migration data. However, monitoring migration in the context of the 2030 Agenda is challenging and relevant data are scarce. Efforts to improve SDG data disaggregation by migratory status and measure “safe migration” help address this.
SDG target 10.7 calls on States to “facilitate orderly, safe, regular and responsible migration and mobility of people, including through the implementation of planned and well-managed migration policies.” However, defining and measuring both “safe migration” and “well-managed migration policies” is challenging; all four SDG indicators that contribute to 10.7 monitoring are classified as Tier II, indicating that States do not regularly produce data on any of these indicators and/or that methodologies are relatively under-developed. Meanwhile, SDG target 17.18 calls for greater availability of “high-quality, timely and reliable data, disaggregated by income, gender, age, race, ethnicity, and migratory status”. To date, however, this has also been difficult. Disaggregation of SDG indicators remains low and migrants are largely invisible in official SDG data, meaning that as we approach 2030, we still do not know what the effects of the SDGs are on migrants and whether they are being left behind.1 Nevertheless, progress has been made in the UNECE region to monitor both targets.
- IOM, forthcoming publication linked to ongoing disaggregation project
Efforts to measure “safe migration” under target 10.7 have progressed
Indicator 10.7.3 measures the “number of people who died or disappeared in the process of migration towards an international destination.” The data for this is provided by IOM’s Missing Migrants Project, which is compiled from a variety of official sources – such as coast guards and medical examiners – as well as unofficial sources, including non-governmental organizations (NGOs), media reports, and surveys of migrants. Measuring the number of lives lost on migratory routes is challenging as the vast majority of lives lost occur on irregular routes. For example, many bodies are lost at sea on hazardous overseas journeys: MMP data indicates that at least 14,000 migrant remains have been lost in the Mediterranean Sea since 2014. However, the challenges of identifying migrant deaths are also due to the lack of official sources which collect data on this issue. Currently, no country provides data on migrant deaths within their jurisdiction at a national level, and most official actors do not collect this even at a local level.2 This necessitates reliance on non-governmental sources that operate in and monitor remote routes; however with the outbreak of COVID-19 and the ensuing mobility restrictions, many of these sources are no longer in operation.
- For a deeper discussion of the quality of data sources on missing migrants, see Singleton et. al (2017) Measuring unsafe migration: The challenge of collecting accurate data on migrant fatalities. Migration Policy Practice VII:2.
Encouraging progress at regional and national levels towards data disaggregation
Beyond monitoring target 10.7, the Inter-Agency Expert Group (IAEG) on SDG indicators recommends 24 indicators be disaggregated by migratory status. In the United Nations Global SDG Database, in 2020 only one indicator was disaggregated by migratory status: indicator 8.8.1, Fatal and non-fatal occupational injuries per 100,000 workers, by sex and migrant status. Out of the 27 countries that disaggregated this indicator by migratory status, 22 were in Europe. More encouraging evidence is seen beyond official databases, however, at regional and national levels. For example, indicators from Eurostat relevant to the SDGs (such as on poverty, income and more) are regularly disaggregated by migratory status. Many countries in the region also regularly generate disaggregated data across sectors. For example, the Italian National Statistical Office (NSO) disaggregates all 24 recommended SDG indicators by country of citizenship in its SDG Information System (2019) and in Norway data are linked between three government agencies to generate data on migrants’ living conditions and provide disaggregated data for several SDG indicators (Statistics Norway, 2017).
Despite methodological and other difficulties in measuring migration topics in the context of the 2030 Agenda, there are ongoing efforts by IOM and others to improve this. In particular, there are opportunities to improve SDG-migration data availability in the region. Despite the lack of disaggregated SDG data at the global level many countries, particularly in the UNECE region, often already gather relevant data. States can leverage existing national data towards the SDGs and include such disaggregation into relevant SDG platforms so there is sufficient data to ensure that no migrant is left behind in the region.
IOM launches open South America portal
Buenos Aires – IOM, the International Organization for Migration, this week launched the Open South America Portal, a web platform providing migrants and stakeholders in the region with access to reliable and timely information on human mobility restrictions and health and safety measures adopted by governments in the COVID-19 pandemic.
Open South America, available in Spanish, English and Portuguese, shares official information by country on the latest measures, including border restrictions, quarantine requirements and COVID-19 tests for migrants and travellers.
The portal also provides updated information on authorized entry points and key places for travellers and migrants, such as consulates, migrant care and health centres, airports, border crossings points and ports. This information can be explored through an interactive map.
The platform, funded by the IOM Development Fund, is also accessible to vulnerable migrants who may be stranded or are at risk of receiving misinformation on migration.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, South America has been one of the most impacted regions worldwide. According to the World Health Organization figures, as of 8 July 2021 there were 33,475,765 COVID-19 cumulative cases in the region, which represents 89 per cent of the total cases in Latin America, and 18 per cent of all infections recorded globally.
Countries such as Brazil, Peru, Colombia and Ecuador all experienced severe outbreaks. For example, Brazil currently reports the third highest number of cumulative cases (18,855,015) and second highest death toll (526,892) globally.
“Open South America will facilitate orderly, regular and responsible migration in South America amid the uncertain times of COVID-19 and after the pandemic,” said Minister Ana Laura Cachaza, General Director of Consular Affairs of the Government of Argentina.
“Migrants’ access to up-to-date information through innovative online tools is essential considering the changing migration dynamic in the region due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Marcelo Pisani, IOM Regional Director for South America.
29,000 Nigerians, Ghanaians, Somalians, other Africans migrated through the Mediterranean Sea to Europe in 2021 —IOM
The International Organisation for Migration has said that 29,000 individuals including Nigerians, Ghanaians, Somalians and other Africans have emigrated to Europe through the Mediterranean Sea this year.
About 13,000 were arrested by the coast guards and returned home while 761 migrants were said to have perished in the sea.
Disclosing this to journalists in Abuja on Friday, the Chief of Mission, IOM Nigeria, Mr Franz Celestin, said less than five per cent of migrants usually made it to Europe, adding that the vast majority stay in Africa.
He further said that a lot of migrants were trafficked within the Economic Community of West African States, adding that Mali was the number one destination point for trafficked Nigerian women.
Responding to questions on the number of people who have undertaken the perilous trip to Europe through the Mediterranean, the IOM Chief said, “A combination of unemployment and underemployment is pushing people to migrate.
“In this year, 29,000 migrants from Sub-Sahara Africa have migrated to Europe through the Mediterranean. About 13,000 were intercepted by the coastguard while 761 died.”
Celestin stressed the importance of tackling human trafficking which he said grossed about $150 billion annually.
“Traffickers make a lot of money and they would continue to do it until a coordinated response is evolved to stop them. We are collaborating with Interpol in this respect; we are connected to the Interpol i/247 database. We connected the MIDAS to the Interpol database where we pass the information on traffickers to the Interpol,” he stated.
Celestin explained that the IOM has been involved in the biometric registration of children in the North-East, noting that the agency has registered no fewer than 17,053 children in 18 different internally displaced person camps between 2019 and May 2021 in Borno State.
The agency chief also disclosed that IOM was involved in the G7 Famine Prevention and Humanitarian Compact for North-East.
FG condemns killing of Nigerian footballer in UK
The Federal government has condemned the alleged killing of a Nigerian Footballer, Kelvin Igweani, by the UK police.
Recall that Igweani, a Nigerian Footballer, was shot dead by officers, who attended a call out to a house, where a child was found with serious injuries.
Reacting, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), in Abuja on Wednesday described the incident as very unfortunate,and sad.
Dabiri-Erewa condoled with the family of the deceased and the Nigerian communities in the UK while praying that God grants rest to the soul of the departed.
“We call on the UK government for a thorough and proper investigation to be carried out on the incident,” the statement added.
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