Today (Sunday 18th December) marks International Migrants Day, a day to celebrate migration and the diversity it brings; a day to recognise how our communities, workplaces and schools are enriched with new talent, ideas and energy. Migration is good for societies and for economies.
Edel McGinley, Director of Migrant Rights Centre Ireland (MRCI) said “In 2016, migration has been repeatedly, falsely, framed as a negative. The truth is that migration brings stability, adding to revenue intake, pensions and social welfare. The fact is that the more open we are to adapting to change, to embracing diversity, to attracting new talent, accepting different ways of working, the more able we are to respond to the shocks of the global economic system in which we live.”
She continued “The more we recognise that we are all much more alike than we are different, the better and more resilient our society will become. No matter where we are born, we all share similar ambitions, hopes and dreams. Most people and families in Ireland have an experience of migration, of seeking a better life and more opportunity for their families. So every time we talk about migration, we are talking about Irish people too.”
McGinley concluded “Europe faces demographic challenges – the population of working age is declining and the number of dependent older people is increasing. The fact is that the EU’s workforce will decrease by approximately 50 million by 2060. The inescapable fact is that we need more migration, not less.”
Notes to Editor
The total number of international migrants has increased from an estimated 175 million in 2000 to 244 million persons in 2015. Nearly two thirds of all international migrants live in Europe (76 million) or Asia (75 million). Migration is now more widely distributed across more countries. Today the top 10 countries of destination receive a smaller share of all migrants than in 2000. One of every ten migrants is under the age of 15.
International Migrants Day
On 4 December 2000, the General Assembly, taking into account the large and increasing number of migrants in the world, proclaimed 18 December International Migrants Day (A/RES/55/93). On that day, in 1990, the Assembly adopted the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (A/RES/45/158).