Banner: Stand up for the human rights of all migrants

Stand up for the human rights of all migrants

On the occasion of International Migrants’ Day, as part of a global call to Stand Up for Human Rights, the UN Human Rights Office launched a series of animated videos to amplify the voices of migrants, the communities that welcome them and the conversations they have along the way. Together with all the people who have participated in this endeavour, we ask you to join us and stand up for the human rights of all migrants everywhere.


Stand up for the human rights of all migrants
How do we change the migration narrative from one of fear, division and exclusion to one that reaffirms our shared values and embraces our common humanity?

Migrant stories are our stories
As we look back on our video series, we realize these aren't just migrant stories, they are human stories. They are OUR stories. A big thanks to @harikondabolu and everyone who shared their stories with us. Join us and #StandUp4Migrants #StandUp4HumanRights!

Feature story


Screenshot of the Siblings animation © OHCHRValues we all share in migrant voices that long to be heard
The UN Human Rights Office launches an animated video series that gives a voice to people on the move and aims to change an often harmful public narrative on migration.

About International Migrants’ Day - #StandUp4Migrants

On 18 December, we celebrate migrants. People who have moved across borders, each with their own story, struggles and successes. Every migrant has their own reasons for leaving behind homes and families, and every migrant has their own unique experiences along the journey, their own personal story of exile and belonging. But these stories often remain hidden, like the many migrants themselves who are compelled to endure a life in the shadows of our societies, prevented from enjoying the rights and freedoms so many take for granted.

Anti-migrant discourse in the political sphere, the media and public debate have become commonplace and are often used for cheap political gains, or as a means of boosting sales and advertising revenue. Migrants are demonised, vilified and used as scapegoats for deep-rooted fears about terrorism, crime, unemployment, welfare systems, and the uncertainties of globalization. Dividing societies into ‘us’ versus ‘them’ enables a justification of violence, hatred and discrimination against migrants including refugees as well as minorities associated with migration. In the ultimate analysis, it is our societies that will lose the most from the spreading of such hatred.

Policies that affect the lives of migrants are better and more sustainable when they are based on facts and evidence. We also know, however, that a more rational debate about migration cannot be only rationalistic. As well as the evidence, it must also be about emotions, empathy and values. Each one of us, migrants and citizens, people on the move and those who have never moved, must listen to one another. By having conversations with those we perceive as different, by listening to their experiences as individuals, we can recognise how we all share a longing to belong, a quest for equality and a right to human dignity. Ultimately, the shared values of human rights connect us all and lay testimony to our common humanity. We realise that we have more in common than that which divides us.

On 18 December 2017, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights launched an animated video series with the purpose of amplifying the stories of migrants and their families, of the communities that welcome them and the conversations they have along the way. We were joined in this series by comedian Hari Kondabolu*, who has been honoured by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio for his ability to unite people of all backgrounds and beliefs in laughter, while raising awareness about important matters of social justice and equality. We are grateful to Hari Kondabolu and to all the migrants who have shared their stories with us.
Together with the migrants and their friends and communities who have participated in this endeavor, we ask you to join us, s hare our stories and stand up for the human rights of all migrants.

How to take action and stand up for migrants

You can find all the migrant stories below and on our social media channels: Facebook /unitednationshumanrights, YouTube/UNOHCHR, Twitter @UNhumanrights.

  • Join us, share our videos, tag us, #StandUp4Migrants and #StandUp4Human Rights!
  • Use the videos and stories in your advocacy, campaigns, educational materials, capacity building and other activities to raise awareness about the human rights of migrants.
  • Reach out to someone in your community who is a migrant or someone who you see as  different from you. Have a conversation, listen to each other’s experiences and find out what you have in common.

​Videos


Stand up for the human rights of all migrants

How do we change the migration narrative from one of fear, division and exclusion to one that reaffirms our shared values and embraces our common humanity?

Hari Kondabolu

Find out why Hari Kondabolu thinks migrants’ stories matter and how we all have a role in confronting xenophobia.

Alene and Eli

Love has no boundaries. Listen to Alene share her dreams and story with her teenage son, Eli. How far would you go to support someone you love?

Hari and Uma Kondabolu

Hari Kondabolu and his mother, Uma Kondabolu, discuss growing up amongst diversity, facing bullying and how to stand up for what is right.

Moussa and Robert

The bonds of friendship transcend borders and continents. Moussa and Robert speak about their love of music, enduring dangerous journeys, and show us how shared values bring us closer together.

Brian Chang

Disregard for human rights and dignity compel many individuals across the world to migrate. Listen to Brian reflect on the reasons why he left his country.

Vanessa and Paula

When we migrate we often leave our loved ones behind and for many migrants this separation can be difficult to overcome. Listen to Vanessa and Paula reflect on why their family means so much to them.

Migrant stories are our stories

As we look back on our video series, we realize these aren't just migrant stories, they are human stories. They are OUR stories. A big thanks to @harikondabolu and everyone who shared their stories with us. Join us and #StandUp4Migrants #StandUp4HumanRights!

Rodrigo, Montse and Isaac

Three siblings reminisce on their childhood, their father’s work ethic and generosity of spirit, and their desire to go to college.


Samir and Adlane

Listen to the conversation between Samir and Adlane, a father and son, who explain what it means to migrate. What would you do to have a good education?

Carlos

Carlos shares what it’s like to be in an irregular situation and the challenges he faces in enjoying his human rights.

Hanaa

Hanaa's migration story is one of empowerment, of how migration has enabled her to overcome a disability, move forward and be free.


Marielle

Marielle has lived and worked abroad for years, but in an irregular situation. Listen to the paradox she lives with every day – being both visible and invisible to society.



Jeannette et Jean-Jacques

Jeannette and Jean-Jacques are friends who have faced many hardships as migrants but they do not believe that returning to their country is an option.



Mai Na and Choua

A community's warm welcome means so much to migrants. Find out about Mai Na and Choua's experience and encourage your community to be welcoming.



Social media

Check out our posts on  Facebook and Twitter.