Joint Declaration of the Inter-American Dialogue and UNICEF on the protection and integration of migrant children in the Americas, adopted at OAS General Assembly
The UNICEF Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean and the Inter-American Dialogue welcome the Declaration for the Protection and Integration of Migrant and Refugee Children in the Americas, made in the context of the 53rd Regular Session of the General Assembly of the Organization of American States (OAS).
UNICEF and the Inter-American Dialogue recognize the efforts that countries in the region have made to implement public policies aimed at guaranteeing the rights of children on the move and facilitating their access to essential services, both in transit and host countries.
Migrant and refugee children face increasing challenges. Many of them move through irregular routes, exposed to violence, including physical and sexual violence, smuggling, human trafficking, and extortion by criminal gangs. Migrant and refugee children and their families face multiple barriers in accessing their rights to physical and mental health, education and protection and are also often subjected to various forms of discrimination in transit and destination countries.
UNICEF and the Inter-American Dialogue call on countries in Latin America and the Caribbean to maintain close regional coordination to ensure the rights, safety and well-being of migrant and refugee children, including addressing structural causes of migration of children, enabling and expanding regular channels for orderly migration, and strengthening initiatives and programmes focused on protecting children ion the move in the region, both through humanitarian responses and longer-term development processes, as well as actions to promote the economic and social inclusion of families on the move.
UNICEF works in some of the world's toughest places, to reach the world's most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org/lac/en.