Grassroots migrants alliance gathers in New York in the struggle for migrant justice

Flash mob action in Washington Square Park at the opening of IAMR4.

by Nicole Oliver

Flash mob action in Washington Square Park at the opening of IAMR4.

Flash mob action in Washington Square Park at the opening of IAMR4.

New York City | The 4th International Assembly of Refugees and Migrants (IAMR4) kicked off this week in New York City. Since 2008, the IAMR has brought together grassroots migrants’ organizations from across the globe. Under the banner of the IAMR organizations stand together in opposition to the gatherings of the Global Forum for Migration and Development, which was formed by the UN High-Level Dialogue on Migration and Development in 2006.  Those who assemble at the IAMR meetings over the years “seek to expose the bankruptcy of the United Nations’ line of managing migration as a tool for development”.

Migrant workers and their supporters unite at the IAMR in the struggle for human rights and justice for migrants. The IAMR seeks to address the root causes of forced migration and highlight issues that migrants and refugees confront daily, such as family separation, labor exploitation and wage theft, detention and deportation, barriers to health and social services, racism and xenophobia, gender and sexuality-based violence and discrimination, and neoliberal labor export policies.

BASICS Community News Service is included among the various organizations in attendance. Other organizations composing the Canadian delegation include Anakbayan-Toronto, International Workers’ Centre (IWC-Canada), Migrante-Canada, Mouvement contre le viol et l’inceste-Montreal, and Pinay-Canada.

The activities scheduled for October 1 included a church witnessing with migrants and a candlelight vigil held outside of the Church Centre for the United Nations.

The October 2 IAMR4 activities brought together grassroots folks in Washington Square Park for an animated flash mob dance. Cultural performances and key note speeches held at St. Patrick’s Church relayed strong messages of solidarity and people power in confronting the struggles of migrants. The Tuesday evening concluded with a powerful and motivating performance from the hip hop group Rebel Diaz.

Rebel Diaz

Bronx rapper Rod Starz – one half of the hip-hop duo Rebel Diaz out of New York – performing at IAMR4. Rod Starz and G1 are brothers whose backgrounds hail from Chile, a country whose diaspora is mostly made up of refugees who fled the fascist Pinochet dictatorship after the 1973 coup d’etat against socialist President Salvador Allende.

IAMR is the main gathering organized by the International Migrants Alliance, an international network of progressive and anti-imperialist migrants organizations.

The IAMR4 continues in New York City until October 5, 2013. For more details on the scheduled events visit and or .



Tags ILPS , migrants

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