UN steps up measures to protect migrants and refugees amid Coronavirus outbreak

In a major step taken to protect the migrant workers during Coronavirus outbreak across the world, four UN agencies have released a joint statement ensuring the safety of the migrants during the pandemic. The World Health Organization, Human Rights office, the UN Refugee Agency, and the International Organization for Migration joined hands for the protection of the migrants during the crisis.

In the joint statement, the agencies noted that it is important to ensure that the health and rights of the migrants, refugees and the stateless are protected amid the pandemic. In order to assure that, the organizations stressed on international cooperation, asserting that the leading financial institutions across the world can help providing financial aid to the states in need. The International Labour Organization has also stressed that the governments must ensure that support reaches the migrants, low-wage labour in such tiring times.

The joint statement also called for the release of the migrants and refugees held in detention centers keeping in mind the lethal consequences of the coronavirus outbreak in the difficult conditions the people live in.

As per reports, millions of refugees, asylum seekers are among the most vulnerable to the virus outbreak. Furthermore, with the borders sealed across the world, the access to basic health care and prevention has become limited for the people. While there have been no reports on the COVID-19 outbreak reaching the refugee camps, but it is only a matter of time that the pandemic infiltrates the displaced communities.

Migrants, refugees and internally displaced have already been facing multiple obstacles in accessing proper healthcare and sanitation facilities across the world. Amid the pandemic outbreak, it has become even more difficult for them to access clean water and hygiene facing due to shortage of supplies in such densely-populated settlements.

Meanwhile, in multiple countries, the United Nations has stepped up its efforts to control the spread of Coronavirus to migrants and refugee camps. From providing healthcare training and sanitation products (soaps, masks) to Rohingya Camp in Bangladesh to conducting temperature screening of people in camps/settlements in Jordon, Ethiopia and Uganda, various steps are being taken for the protections of migrant workers, refugees and stateless across the world by the United Nations.

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