21 December 2009
In addressing the Council of the International Organization for Migration earlier this month, Archbishop Tomasi emphasized that the dignity and inalienable human rights of irregular migrants demand that they receive protection and the opportunity to enjoy their basic rights to contribute to society, find legal employment and have access to training and education.
In his statement Archbishop Tomasi pointed out that as a consequence of their status, irregular migrants become vulnerable to widespread exploitation and abuse and can be used for unfair competition, and experience serious, but avoidable personal and public health concerns.
Moreover, he went on to say, "irregular migrants are commonly pictured for political and media purposes—and at times perceived by public opinion—as simply losers, job stealers or worse, and a burden to social services when in fact they are active contributors to the economy."
Education and a more realistic portraying of irregular migrants in the media is needed to remove these misconceptions he said.