human rights protections

International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste

Reducing food losses and waste is essential in a world where the number of people affected by hunger has been slowly on the rise since 2014, and tons and tons of edible food are lost and/or wasted every day. Globally, around 14 percent of food produced is lost between harvest and retail, while an estimated 17 percent of total global food production is wasted (11 percent in households, 5 percent in the food service and 2 percent in retail).

The International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste is an opportunity to call to action both the public (national or local authorities) and the private sector (businesses and individuals), to prioritise actions and move ahead with innovation to reduce food loss and waste towards restoring and building back better and resilient-ready, food systems.

Check how you can help us through FAO, the leading agency for this International Day, and discover what you can do. Take action, start something. Stop food loss and waste. For the people. For the planet. And on Sept. 29th, join the global virtual event, where FAO and UNEP experts will share their perspectives on the issues and actions required to stem the problem of food loss and waste. Register here!

To share your event, download the logo and other social media materials in different languages, check the guide that will help you to spread the message, or just get more information, at FAO’s official page for the Observance. To learn more about how and why the UN commemorates the International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste, please visit un.org/en/observances/end-food-waste-day.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit congocsd.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN.

International Day for Universal Access to Information

On 17 November 2015, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) declared 28 September as International Day for Universal Access to Information. Considering that several civil society organizations and government bodies in the world have adopted and currently celebrate this observance, the UN General Assembly also adopted 28 September 2019 as the International Day for Universal Access to Information.

UNESCO and its intergovernmental programs – the International Programme for Development of Communication and the Information for All Programme – provide a platform and frame for all the stakeholders to participate in international discussions on policy and guidelines in the area of access to information. Both programs also enable positive environment for ATI to flourish through the development of projects aimed to strengthen open science, multilingualism, ICTs for disabled and marginalized, and media and information literacy.

Access to information

Informed citizens can make informed decisions, for instance, when going to the polls. Only when citizens know how they are governed, can they hold their governments accountable for their decisions and actions. Information is power. Therefore, universal access to information is a cornerstone of healthy and inclusive knowledge societies.

Universal access to information means that everyone has the right to seek, receive and impart information. This right is an integral part of the right to freedom of expression. The media plays a crucial role in informing the public about issues of interest, but it relies on the ability to seek and receive information, too. Hence, the right to universal access to information is also bound up with the right to freedom of the press.

To learn more about why and how the UN commemorates this day, please visit un.org/en/observances/information-access-day.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@gmail.com or bknotts@uua.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

2021 Geneva Peace Talks: Recovering better for an equitable & sustainable world

We are pleased to invite you and your staff to attend the 9th edition of the Geneva Peace Talks. Marking the International Day of Peace, the Geneva Peace Talks will take place on Tuesday, 21 September 2021 from 4:00 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. in Room XVIII at the Palais des Nations and online.

The 2021 edition is organized under the theme “Recovering better for an equitable and sustainable world”. In 2021, as we heal from the COVID-19 pandemic, we are inspired to think creatively and collectively about how to help everyone recover better. People around the world are facing not only a global health crisis, but also other imminent crises: climate change, poverty, inequalities, stigma and discrimination. We must transform our world into one that is more equal, inclusive, sustainable, and healthier. We must make peace with one another.

The event will feature speakers from a wide range of backgrounds, from health equity to environmental action. We will hear from the former Director-General of the International Committee of the Red Cross Mr. Yves Daccord, the Head of the Secretariat of the Principles for Peace Initiative Ms. Hiba Qasas, Senegalese singer and champion for climate action Mr. Baaba Maal, Chief Executive Officer of the World Health Organization Foundation Mr. Anil Soni in an interview, three high school students from the first-ever Peace Talks club, a choreographer from South Africa; as well as two film makers creating a documentary on climate refugees.

Due to COVID-19 preventive measures, only a limited number of seats will be available in Room XVIII. Early registration for in-person participation is required as it will be closed once the maximum capacity is reached.

To follow the event online or to register, please use the following link: peacetalks.net.

This year’s Geneva Peace Talks are co-organized, once again, by the United Nations Office at Geneva, Interpeace and the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform, in partnership with the Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the United Nations Office and to other international organizations in Geneva.

The Geneva Peace Talks are an annual highlight of International Geneva. We look forward to your participation, which will send a strong signal of support and demonstrate our collective commitment to peace across the world.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@gmail.com or bknotts@uua.org. 

Human Rights in older age: Towards the elimination of ageism and age discrimination

Join us for a special side event of the 48th session of the Human Rights Council on Tuesday 21 September 14:00 Geneva time.

Ageism is a global phenomenon, which has serious consequences for individuals and society at large. According to the UN Global Report on Ageism, half of the world’s population is ageist against older persons. The COVID-19 pandemic brought to light entrenched ageism and age discrimination in many areas including hate speech in public discourse and on social media. Despite its scale and harmful impacts, ageism remains largely unknown and is often considered more acceptable compared to other forms of discrimination.

The report of the UN Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons to the 48th session of the HRC (A/HRC/48/53), examines ageism and age discrimination, analyses their possible causes and manifestations, and reviews the way the existing legal and policy frameworks at the international and regional levels protects older persons against ageism and age-discrimination.

This side event of the 48th session will bring to the fore real-life experiences of ageism and age discrimination faced by older persons and will take stock of the Independent Expert’s conclusions and recommendations with the aim to discuss strategies to address and prevent ageism and age discrimination and to ensure the promotion and protection of the rights of older persons.

Register here: hrworg.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_wOy7GGkqQgaaACt38yJb9Q

Event will also be webcast live on https://media.un.org/en/webtv/

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-NY, please visit ngocoa-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Geneva, please visit ageingcommitteegeneva.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Vienna, please visit ngoageingvie.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Intergenerational Solidarity, please email the vice chair at susanneseperson@gmail.com. 

Spotlight on Sustainable Development 2021: Demanding Justice Beyond Rhetoric

Policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic crisis have exacerbated rather than reduced global inequalities. The most visible example of this is the global disparity in the distribution of vaccines. So far more than 60 percent of people in high-income countries have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, but less than 2 percent have done so in low-income countries. In view of this dramatic disparity, the “leave no one behind” mantra of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development remains hollow. In fact, the vested interests of economic elites continue to dominate political decision-making. Given the urgency of the COVID-19 crisis and the other unresolved global problems, most notably the climate emergency, it is high time for transformative policies, strategies and structural changes.

This year’s Spotlight on Sustainable Development Report describes the highly uneven socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis and analyses the policy responses to it. It explores beyond the rhetoric, highlighting deepening inequalities, self-serving and hypocritical policies and governance failures at national and international level. Addressing the imbalance in global vaccine production and distribution, the report also examines a few key areas where political and structural changes are necessary to correct the limited and asymmetric recovery. With this virtual launching event, we will present key findings of the report.

Brief snapshots by:

  • K.M. Gopakumar, Third World Network
  • Vanita Mukherjee, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)
  • Roberto Bissio, Social Watch

Policy conclusions by:

  • Kate Donald, Center for Economic and Social Right
  • Daria Cibrario, Public Services International (PSI)
  • Isabel Ortiz,Global Social Justice

Moderators:

  • Bodo Ellmers, Global Policy Forum
  • María Graciela Cuervo, Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)

Register here: rsvp.globalpolicy.org/report-launch-spotlight-on-sustainable-development-2021-demanding-justice-beyond-rhetoric.

Participants will receive the login details one day before the event. Further information on the Spotlight Report 2021 will be available shortly at www.2030spotlight.org

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit congocsd.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org.

76th Session of the UN General Assembly

The 76th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 76) will open on Tuesday, 14 September 2021. The first day of the high-level General Debate will be Tuesday, 21 September 2021.

As more information becomes available, it will be posted here: sdg.iisd.org/events/76th-session-of-the-un-general-assembly-unga-76

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CoNGO Notes: For information about the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the UN (CoNGO), and its commitment to the ideals and objectives of the United Nations, see www.ngocongo.org

Reclaiming Industrial Policy: Putting Policymaking Theory into Practice

UNCTAD15 pre-event:

Reclaiming Industrial Policy – Putting Policymaking Theory into Practice

Event co-organized with the OECD Development Centre

This webinar is the fourth of a four-part webinar series aimed at assessing what the emerging new consensus around industrial policymaking means and involves, particularly for developing countries. Tapping into the expertise of the recently launched Oxford Handbook on Industrial Policy and using the case studies offered by the Productive Transformation Policy Reviews (PTPRs), this fourth webinar will explore how the key principles that characterize the “new consensus” enshrined in the handbook shall be put into practice in countries that differ along several economic, political and social dimensions, and that face very different constraints.

Purpose and key objectives

The purpose of this event is to discuss how the key principles that characterize the “new consensus” around industrial policymaking enshrined in the Oxford Handbook on Industrial Policy shall be put into practice in countries that differ along several economic, political and social dimensions, and that face very different constraints. The case studies offered by the UNCTAD initiatives such as the PTPRs will serve as an anchor for the more general debate. The event will also represent the closure of a series of webinars that, tapping into the expertise of the recently launched Oxford Handbook on Industrial Policy, explore some of the challenges and areas of debate around industrial policy making.

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_4wJBII2oR8iiN1vMKMDMrg

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org

From Words to Action: The UN Secretary General’s “Our Common Agenda” Report

The UN Secretary-General’s much anticipated “Our Common Agenda” report will be presented to the General Assembly on Friday, September 10 2021 at 10am EDT.

Watch live on UN webTV at 10:00 am EDT here: media.un.org/en/webtv

The report follows the UN75 Declaration, adopted September 21 2020, when member states commemorating the 75th anniversary of the United Nations promised to fulfill 12 key commitments across the global agenda and mandated the Secretary-General “to report back with recommendations to advance our common agenda and to respond to current and future challenges.”

Reflecting the importance of the Our Common Agenda report, the Secretary-General’s office initiated preparations earlier this year that included consultations with Member States, youth representatives, UN officials, academic experts and civil society. The report on the “We the Peoples” online consultations with civil society, which generated 523 proposals for a stronger UN from 1,759 participants from 147 countries, will also be released September 10.

In a letter sent to UN missions in August, Maria Fernanda Espinosa, Co-Chair of the Coalition for the UN We Need (C4UN) and Danilo Türk, President of the Club de Madrid called on world leaders at the upcoming General Assembly High-level segment to reinforce the necessity of collective action to strengthen multilateralism.

According to Espinosa, “We recognize that responding to the challenges and threats posed by the COVID-19 pandemic is the overriding priority for governments around the world. But the pandemic also reinforces the social solidarity and awareness of humanity’s shared need to strengthen global cooperation.”

Upcoming C4UN communications will provide additional information and analysis on the Common Agenda report as well as events in September and October where the reports recommendations will be discussed in greater detail. Read the Regional Consultations report here.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

Leveraging Technology and Innovative Shared Living Solutions for Older Adults

IFA Global Cafe presents

In Conversation with Dr. Vipan Nikore on “Leveraging Technology and Innovative Shared Living Solutions for Older Adults”

While much of the world is reopening and life has returned to normal level. However, the vulnerability of many long-term care facilities still become apparent. As we look towards future, we are striving the ensure the vulnerable older adults receive quality care not only in long-term facilities but also in their own homes.

The IFA is honored to invite Dr. Vipan Nikore, a healthy systems leader, with extensive experience in improving healthcare innovation and technology, and is keen to connect people who share a vision to create positive change for older adults.

Register here: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAkdeitqTorHdIP8hNmsgYG3cYOq821Swmc

This Global Cafe takes place at 07:00 am (Eastern Day Time) on Friday 10 September 2021 (additional time zones below):

Vancouver, Canada 4:00 am
London, UK 12:00 pm
Geneva, Switzerland 1:00 pm
Lagos, Nigeria 12:00 pm
New Delhi, India 4:30 pm
Perth, Australia 7:00 pm

This Global Cafe will be recorded and streamed live on Facebook. Should you be unable to participate, a recording will be available on the IFA Facebook page at facebook.com/intfedageing and resources will be available at: ifa.ngo/ifa-global-cafe.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-NY, please visit ngocoa-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Vienna, please visit ngoageingvie.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Geneva, please visit ageingcommitteegeneva.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Intergenerational Solidarity, please email the vice chair at susanneseperson@gmail.com. 

World Humanitarian Day

Dear NGO Representatives,

Ms. Tatiana Valovaya, UNOG Director-General, is pleased to invite you to take part in the annual observance of World Humanitarian Day at the Palais des Nations, which will take place on Thursday, 19 August 2020 at 3.00 p.m., outside the Human Rights and Alliance of Civilizations Room (Room XX). 

Designated by the General Assembly to be observed on 19 August – the day when 22 colleagues were killed at the United Nations Office in Baghdad, World Humanitarian Day is an opportunity to pay tribute to colleagues who have lost their lives in humanitarian service and to honour the thousands of aid workers who continue to provide much needed support to people suffering from conflicts or disasters across the world.  As the world’s humanitarian capital, Geneva plays a central role in bringing together the partners to ensure an effective humanitarian response.

The Geneva World Humanitarian Day commemoration is organized in collaboration with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). Due to COVID-19, the solemn ceremony will be organized in a hybrid format, with a limited physical presence outside Room XX. Due to the setup, no interpretation will be provided, however the speakers will address the event in either English or French. For any queries, please contact unog.political@un.org. 

We also take this opportunity to encourage you to be part of the 2021 World Humanitarian Day global campaign #TheHumanRace, which aims to get the world racing against the climate crisis clock ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November. Together with some famous persons in sport, the United Nations is encouraging people across the world to run, walk, swim, row or cycle for climate action. Learn more at https://www.unocha.org/world-humanitarian-day-2021.

The commemoration of World Humanitarian Day is a highlight in the agenda of International Geneva. Ms. Tatiana Valovaya looks forward to your participation which will send a strong signal of support, demonstrating our collective commitment to the humanitarian cause.

Program:

Wreath laying and candle lighting ceremony with Ms. Tatiana Valovaya, Director-General, United Nations Office at Geneva and Ms. Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Ms. Tatiana Valovaya, Director-General, United Nations Office at Geneva

Minute of silence

  • Ms. Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
  • Ms. Laura Dolci, Family of the victim of the attacks against the United Nations Office in Baghdad on 19 August 2003
  • H.E. Mr. Abdul-Karim HASHIM MOSTAFA, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Iraq to the United Nations Office and other international organizations in Geneva
  • Ms. Prisca Chaoui, Executive Secretary, UNOG Staff Coordinating Council
  • Ms. Wafaa Saeed, Acting Director of the Coordination Division, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

Laying of floral arrangements by participants

Master of ceremonies: Ms. Alessandra Vellucci, Director, United Nations Information Service

Join the World Humanitarian Day global campaign on the climate crisis. Sign up or pledge your part to the #TheHumanRace now.

To attend in person, register here. The event will also be webcast live at webtv.un.org.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@gmail.com or bknotts@uua.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

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