Gender and migration

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The motives and consequences of human mobility are shaped by various factors such as customary rules based on gender expectations, ethnicity, race, age and class. Among these, it can be argued that gender has the biggest impact on the migration experiences of men, women, boys, girls and persons identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI). Thus, including gender considerations in policymaking and planning can contribute to individuals’ social and economic empowerment and promote gender equality; leaving such considerations out can expose them to further risks and vulnerabilities and perpetuate or exacerbate inequalities. 

The Global Compact for Migration and the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants call for more migration data to be disaggregated by sex and age. They acknowledge that sex-disaggregated data allow for the identification and analysis of specific vulnerabilities and capacities of women and men, revealing gaps and inequalities. These data also enable the analysis of how gender norms might influence the experiences of women and men in migration processes, and in turn how their experiences might change gender norms. While it is important to consider the experiences of women and girls, which have sometimes been overlooked, it is equally important to also consider the experiences of men, boys and LGBTI persons, who are also exposed to forms of gender-based violence or vulnerabilities during different migration processes.