The UN’s International Organisation for Migration established a presence in Dominica in 2015 after Tropical Storm Erika displaced entire communities.
She says the organisation was heavily involved in housing displaced persons at community shelters.
“The intention is that the Mission here will be a permanent one providing support to the Government in terms of migration-related matters. In emergency time, the matters often have to do with internal displacement. We focus on camps and collective shelters or emergency shelters. We also contribute to the relief and recovery effort post-emergency.
“In non-emergency times like now we try to draw attention and bring advocacy to the issue of migration and to improve the capacity in migration management in needed areas.”
Alleyne-Esprit wants the island to know that the issue of migration is relevant to Dominicans and the Caribbean hence the observance today.
“We are a migrant society,” she says. “The Caribbean is made up of migrant societies; they are based on migration. We came here from other paces and we often leave here for other places. This [observance] is an attempt to bring attention to migration and open discussion.”
The IOM screened a movie today to draw attention to migration.
The international community observes International Migrants Day on December 18th every year.
Joel Peter voices this report.