Migration policy

In engaging in the area of migration, National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have the purpose – individually and together with the International Federation and the ICRC – to address the humanitarian concerns of migrants in need.

They strive to provide assistance and protection to them, uphold their rights and dignity, empower them in their search for opportunities and sustainable solutions, as well as promote social inclusion and interaction between migrants and host communities.

In 2007, the 16th General Assembly of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies requested the Governing Board to establish a Reference Group on Migration to provide leadership and guidance and to develop a Federation policy on migration. The Council of Delegates welcomed this decision and highlighted the Movement-wide importance of the humanitarian consequences of migration. The 30th International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent also underlined the humanitarian concerns generated by international migration. Its declaration ‘Together for Humanity’ elaborated on the issue, acknowledging the role of National Societies in providing humanitarian assistance to vulnerable migrants, irrespective of their legal status.

The present policy on migration expands the scope of, and replaces the Federation policy on refugees and other displaced people. It builds on, and complements those resolutions of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement that relate to action in favour of refugees and internally displaced persons (see Annex). In order to capture the full extent of humanitarian concerns, the policy is deliberately broad. Therefore, while recognizing the specific rights of different categories under international law, it addresses the needs and vulnerabilities of, among others, labour migrants, stateless migrants, irregular migrants, as well as refugees and asylum seekers.

National Societies and the International Federation have a responsibility to ensure that their activities and programmes are carried out in compliance with this policy; that all staff and volunteers are aware of the rationale and content, and that all relevant governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental partners are adequately informed about it.

The Policy on Migration was endorsed by the 17th General Assembly of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in Nairobi, Kenya in November 2009.

Working with and for vulnerable migrants is one of the long-standing traditions of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. It is rooted in its Fundamental Principles and universal character as well as in its volunteer and community basis. However, patterns and issues associated with migration change over time. We should, therefore, continually examine our ways of working with and for migrants to ensure that our action remains strong, coherent, and mindful of crosscutting issues. The policy on migration is a living policy: It will be reviewed and, if necessary, revised as we evaluate its implementation


La Federación Internacional de Sociedades de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roja es la mayor organización humanitaria del mundo, con 190 sociedades miembros. Siendo uno de los componentes del Movimiento Internacional de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roja, nuestra labor se rige por los siete principios fundamentales: humanidad, imparcialidad, neutralidad, independencia, voluntariado, unidad y universalidad.