Update: 29.09.2015

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

Of 18 December 1990 (Entry into Force 01 July 2003)

Text of Treaty

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The International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Their Families specifies human rights articled in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and expresses explicitly how different rights apply to different categories of working migrants. Beyond already existing limitations expressed by law, the Convention holds no provisions restricting the rights of states to decide on immigration procedures. 


48 contracting states (as at 29 September 2015; current count)

This Convention has not been signed by any industrial nation with immigrants in the western world. This includes Switzerland 

Obligations of Contracting States

This UN-convention contains 93 clauses and is the longest human rights convention altogether. In accordance with other human rights conventions, contracting parties are obliged to warrant the human rights of working migrants listed in this convention without discrimination (Part II). In Part III these human rights specific to migrants are listed separately. Part IV concerns itself with further rights of migrant workers that regularly reside in their mother land. Part V entails regulations concerning specific categories of foreigner like cross-border commuters, seasonal labourers and travellers. Part VI lists regulations dealing with working migrants without a residence permit. 

Monitoring Process

In Article 72 the Committee on Migrant Workers, consisting of 10 independent experts, is mentioned. At present 41 states have ratified the convention and the committee is composed of 14 members. The contracting parties are obligated to submit a report on their efforts to implement the regulations of the convention within one year of its entry into force and all five years thereafter.  

Further Information

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