A Safety Net
Crises, whether man-made or natural, cause immense suffering and uncertainty, not only because victims lose loved ones, homes, and livelihoods, but because their safety net also disappears.
Governments normally guarantee the security and human rights of their citizens, but they are often unable to do so, and sometimes they become violators. The tragic result is that displaced civilians are extremely vulnerable to targeted violence, sexual assault, exploitation, persecution and other human rights abuses.
The protection of millions of refugees and displaced persons is the core mandate of UNHCR. Both before and after emergencies, we work to ensure their rights are respected and that refugees are not forced to return to countries where they are in danger. UNHCR offers legal and protection assistance to minimize threats of violence, including sexual assault, a risk even in countries of asylum. We also work with our partners to keep refugees safe, with access to essential services and opportunities to earn an income.