International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families

The aim of the Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families is to protect migrant workers and their families. The UN General Assembly adopted the Convention on 18 December 1990 and it came into force on 1 July 2003. Switzerland has neither signed nor ratified the Convention.

The Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (CMW) aims to protect migrant workers and members of their families from exploitation and human rights violations regardless of their migration status.

It reaffirms the fundamental rights that are enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the other international human rights conventions.

The Convention defines civil and political rights with a view to the particular situation of migrant workers (such as the right to have consular or diplomatic authorities informed in the event of detention), and contains provisions on violations of migration law and respective prohibitions (such as the prohibition of collective expulsions).

It also sets out the economic, social and cultural rights of migrant workers in view of their particular situation, e.g. the right to urgently required medical treatment or the right of access to education for children of migrant workers.

The UN adopted the Convention on 18 December 1990 and it came into force on 1 July 2003. Switzerland has neither signed nor ratified the Convention.

International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families

Review Mechanism

The Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families monitors the states parties in the implementation of their obligations under the Convention. The states parties must report regularly on the measures taken to implement the provisions of the Convention and document both progress and difficulties.

Each state party is to submit a first report to the Committee within the first year following ratification. Further reports are due on a five-yearly basis.

UN Committee on Migrant Workers

Other review mechanisms

In addition to the state reporting procedure, states parties may recognise the competence of the Committee to consider interstate and individual complaints. This mechanism has not yet come into effect, however, as less than 10 states have recognised the Committee's competence in this matter.