Member area

Inclusive societies and labour markets for successful integration of migrants – TUAC statement for the OECD Ministerial Meeting on Migration and Integration

17 January 2020

(Retrouvez ci-dessous la Déclaration du TUAC pour la réunion ministérielle en français)

Today, at the OECD Ministerial Meeting, member countries will come together to discuss how migration and integration policies are made future ready. The TUAC calls on the OECD and member countries to seize the opportunity of the Ministerial to move forward with the urgent task of ensuring comprehensive and balanced policies towards migration and integration with a strong focus on labour market policies.

The TUAC is looking to the OECD and ministers to ensure a policy response that addresses the protection and respect of human rights of migrants as well as the root causes of forced or involuntary migration.

In 2018, OECD countries received about 5.3 million new permanent migrants and 1.09 million asylum applications. Combined with the 4.9 million temporary workers that entered OECD countries in 2017, fears of the possible impact of immigration on national workers in terms of employment, wages and working conditions can partially explain the increasing concerns regarding unmanaged migration and integration.

The successful integration of migrants is paramount. At the Ministerial Meeting, the TUAC will be calling on OECD and member countries to ensure meaningful government consultations with representatives of civil-society institutions in addition to negotiations and social dialogue between employers and trade unions. These are crucial elements for a successful economic and social integration of migrants.

Geopolitical instability, divisions and lack of economic development are amongst the root causes of migration. OECD countries should cooperate to more effectively deal with causes of forced migration.  Under circumstances where the alternative to migration is death, violence, suppression, or extreme poverty, those problems should also be addressed. One fundamental right should be the right to stay at home.

TUAC General Secretary, Pierre Habbard, looks forward to the meeting and the discussion with OECD ministers. “The OECD and member countries should address the social and labour market needs of migrants. They should also address structural changes and megatrends such as demographic changes, climate change, technological developments, geopolitical instabilities and uncertainties. And they should engage in a whole-of-society approach based on social dialogue with employers and trade unions. This is the only way to ensure the successful integration of migrants”, says Pierre Habbard.

On the longer term migrants and immigration offer opportunities to maintain growth and welfare for many OECD countries affected by ageing societies. In this regard, it should be stressed that all migrant workers have the right to be protected against any kind of discrimination, exploitation, or abuse. You do not lose your human rights when becoming a migrant.

Member countries should pay particular attention to at-risk sectors and businesses for migrants, including recruitment and employment agencies where discriminatory treatment can effectively replace labour law protections or can leave migrant workers at the mercy of unscrupulous employers.


Read the TUAC statement for the Ministerial Meeting here.

Lisez la déclaration du TUAC pour la réunion ministérielle ici.