CARE Canada Statement In Response to New York Refugee Declaration
Sep 19, 2016
The following statement is from CARE Canada President and CEO Gillian Barth:
CARE welcomes efforts of UN member states to highlight the specific needs of refugees and migrants and we are inspired by the Government of Canada’s leadership on these important issues.
The Prime Minister’s announcement of a 10 per cent increase in humanitarian aid alongside new multi-year funding to support those affected by crisis are significant pledges that will allow agencies to do more to help the world’s displaced.
At the same time, the adoption of the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants is a positive step.
The Declaration’s recognition of women and girls as powerful agents of change is particularly important. We also welcome the acknowledgement of civil society actors as critical to any solutions moving forward.
This is progress, but we remain concerned the language of the document remains largely non-committal, that there are few concrete actions, and that few provisions have been made to hold states accountable for their commitments.
CARE Canada encourages all member states to fix these shortcomings before the adoption of a Global Compact on Refugees in 2018. We believe Canada is well placed to play a significant role in these efforts as it assumes the chairmanship of the UN Refugee Agency’s executive committee.
True global responsibility sharing must not be reduced to responsibility shifting, as we are seeing in some parts of the world.
Ultimately it falls to all member states to implement these measures together
Immediate action is needed, for example, to resettle 10 per cent of the global refugee population by the end of this year.
Tomorrow, President Obama’s Leaders’ Summit on Refugees, co-hosted by Canada, presents an opportunity for leading states to step up and set strong precedent for resettlement, and for helping those host countries that are shouldering enormous responsibility in housing and assisting millions of refugees abroad.
The status quo cannot continue. Too many people sit in limbo in camps or urban settings poorly-equipped to support an influx of people. Too many lives have been lost.
It is the responsibility of all countries, including Canada, to ensure new international commitments help bring about a world in which refugees and migrants are not only able to survive, but to thrive.
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Communications Specialist | CARE Canada
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