The Americas include the Caribbean, Central America, South America, North America regions (countries listed below, United Nations Statistics Division) Occupational therapists practice in Chile, Argentina, United States of America (USA), and Canada. 

The American Convention of Human Rights (1969) has been ratified by Chile and Argentina. The preamble notes, with significance to displaced people that:

"That the essential rights of man are not derived from one's being a national of a certain state, but are based upon attributes of the human personality, and that they therefore justify international protection in the form of a convention reinforcing or complementing the protection provided by the domestic law of the American states."

Caribbean (Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Bonaire, Saint Eustatius and Saba, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Curaçao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Haiti, Jamacia, Martinique, Montserrat, Puerto Rico, Saint-Barthélemy, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin (French part), Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sint Maarten (Dutch part), Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, United States Virgin Islands),

Central America (Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatamala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama),

South America (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Equador, Falkland Islands, French Gulana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay, Venezuela)


Member Countries of MERCOSUL (Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Venezuela) and two associated countries (Bolivia, Chile) signed in Fortaleza (CE), a commitment to adopt common policies for the protection of asylum seekers and strengthen the humanitarian space in the region.
Contrary to what has happened elsewhere in the world, the "Declaration of Principles of Mercosul on International Protection of Refugees" proposes that the Mercosul countries not only prevent the adoption of restrictive migration policies, but also enables migratory regularization alternatives, avoiding thus the submission of requests that are unrelated to refugee situations.
The signing of the document comes at the time of preparation of the region to commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the Cartagena Declaration on Refugees, which occurs in 2014. The document, from 1974, is considered a milestone in the protection of estimated 4.5 million refugees in the Americas.
Among other commitments made by signatories of the Declaration are ensuring that refugees can exercise the same rights as other foreigners in a regular situation, adopting a favorable approach to family reunification of refugees and the establishment of cooperation mechanisms between institutions that deal with refuge in each country.
Furthermore, the document highlights the importance of giving special attention to gender and age (particularly in cases of unaccompanied or separated children from their families) and not returning refugees and asylum seekers to their countries of origin or areas where their lives are in danger.
"The Declaration is a great example of the political will of the member countries of Mercosul and associates to keep the flag of solidarity with refugees, in an international context of restrictive policies in both the theme of migrants in general, as with the issue of refugees in particular, "said the representative of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Brazil, Andres Ramirez.

North America (Bermuda, Canada, Greenland, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, United States of America)






The numbers

  • Number of occupational therapists: 105 710 (WFOT, 2010)
  • Number of OOFRAS members: 5 (Our Members)
  • Number of displaced people in residence: 276 484 (UNHCR, 2012)
  • Number of displaced people originating: 4 371 (UNCHR, 2012

UN Treaties

  • UN Refugee Convention (1951): America has not yet signed the Convention or Protocol
  • Stateless Persons Convention (1954): America has not yet signed this convention 
  • Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness (1961): America has not yet signed this convention 


The numbers

  • Number of occupational therapists: 12 649 (WFOT, 2010)
  • Number of OOFRAS members: 2 (Our Members)
  • Number of displaced people in residence: 206 735 (UNHCR, 2012)
  • Number of displaced people originating: 114 (UNCHR, 2012)
  • Number of detained asylum seekers, May 12: 
  • Max number of potential years in immigration detention: 

UN Treaties

  • UN Refugee Convention (1951) Canada became signatory of the Convention in 1969 and Protocol 1969 (UN Treaty Collection)
  • Stateless Persons Convention (1954) Canada has not yet signed this convention (UN Treaty Collection)
  • Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness (1961) Canada became a signatory 1978 (UN Treaty Collection)


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