Resolution on Refugees, Internally Displaced Persons and Forced Migration

  1. About 65.3 million people worldwide have been forced to move away from their home or region for preventable and non-preventable reasons. Some of these include natural disasters such as floods or earthquakes. Wars, political oppression, the effects of climate change, xenophobia, conflicts of various kinds and economic disparity force large numbers of people to leave their homes. On the way to safety many lose their lives, fall prey to human trafficking, violence and abuse.
  2. The Assembly remembers that many of us have been or still are forced to migrate. Any of us could become a refugee, and many of us have been before.
  3. The Assembly commends the LWF member churches and LWF World Service for their long-standing work amongst and for refugees and displaced people regardless of religious affiliation.  The Assembly commends the LWF for tireless advocacy to safeguard the dignity, human rights and fundamental freedoms regardless of migratory status.
  4. The Assembly commends countries that open their borders to receive refugees and displaced people.  The Assembly commends those countries that seek to integrate migrants, address their needs and combat all forms of xenophobia, racism and discrimination towards migrants.  The Assembly acknowledges the stress sometimes placed on host communities in the process of receiving new residents and providing for their well-being. 
  5. The Assembly notes with sadness that several governments of the world are building walls of separation rather than showing hospitality towards the stranger. The human rights of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers are not universally respected. 

In response to this current situation the Assembly:

  • Calls upon the LWF member churches and Communion Office to address the root causes of forced migration where possible.
  • Calls upon the LWF member churches to continue advocating for welcoming refugees into their respective countries and pressure their governments, the United States and European countries in particular, not to build walls but “to build bridges”. 
  • Asks the LWF communion office to strengthen the implementation of the UN Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) and actively contribute to the development of the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) and the Global Compact on Migration (GCM). 
  • Requests the LWF communion office and member churches to advocate for safe, orderly and regular migration and to support the development of internationally negotiated guidelines for dignified treatment of migrants in vulnerable situations.    
  • Requests the LWF communion office to support member churches who are developing or strengthening their capacity to receive refugees.