Caribbean nations rally together to address climate-induced migration

Houses destroyed in Mahaut Dominica (IOM – Jorge Gallo)

Nine Members of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) made an urgent call for enhanced cooperation and action to address the impacts of human mobility due to climate change and environmental hazards on the people of the region, including massive displacements, and economic and non-economic loss and damage, during the
Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) Climate Week 2023 held in Panama from 25-27 October 2023.

Dr. Clarence Henry, Senior Technical Officer of the Regional Integration Unit at OECS Commission, presented the “Ministerial Declaration on Migration and Climate Change” on behalf of the Ministers of National Security and Immigration of Antigua and Barbuda, the Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the British Virgin Islands, and Anguilla on Wednesday 25 October during a side event at the region’s Climate Week conference.

“OECS Ministers with responsibility for immigration matters, in recognition of the high level of vulnerability of the OECS region to the wide range of environmental and climate hazards, in this Ministerial Declaration articulate their deep concern for the adverse impact of climate change and they place an urgent call in this Declaration for enhanced cooperation and action that will address the following climate change impacts: the massive displacement of populations; the diverse patterns of internal and international migration; the need for relocations of communities
most exposed to environmental impacts; the need to address the data gap associated with human mobility and the paucity of finance and the need for partnership to address this gap.”

Global stakeholders gathered in Panama at the LAC Climate Week to discuss and address the climate crisis. Participants recognized the need for a collaborative, region-wide response to effectively tackle the challenges ahead, and praised the steps being made by the OECS in the development of the “Cross-border Evacuation Protocol for Countries of the Eastern Caribbean in the Context of Disasters”, under a Joint Programme led by the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office in Barbados and Eastern Caribbean, and funded by the UN Trust Fund for Human Security (UNTFHS). The side event was hosted by implementation partners from this programme – IOM-UN Migration, The UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), the Platform on Disaster Displacement (PDD) and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to put the recommendations of the Warsaw International
Mechanism (WIM) Task Force on Displacement into action.

For more information, contact Project Coordinator, IOM Dominica: Viola Pascal [[email protected].]

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