The Global Compact for Migration: what could it mean for women and gender relations?
Under half of international migrants throughout the world are women. While large movements of people, human rights and humanitarian crises, and migrant deaths are not new, the public attention given to the arrivals of refugees and migrants to the shores of Europe has compelled governments to engage in a multilateral manner. In September 2016, the United Nations General Assembly held its firstever summit dedicated to large movements of refugees and migrants, reaffirming the importance of existing legal instruments to protect refugees and migrants, and also foreseeing the development of two new Global Compacts: one on refugees, and the other for safe, orderly and regular migration. This article examines the process to elaborate the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration from a gender-responsive perspective. It takes into consideration the advocacy role that the Women in Migration Network and other civil society stakeholders have played in its development, identifies the various opportunities and gaps within the Global Compact, and explores how women’s organisations and development organisations can promote change for women in migration under the new Global Compact.