Conference of NGOs

Save the Date: NGO CSW/NY April Monthly Meeting

NGO CSW/NY April Monthly Meeting

CSW67 Outcomes: A Call to Action for Gender Equality in Tech & Digital Innovation

Join us for our April Monthly Meeting where we will debrief on the outcomes of the CSW67 including the Agreed Conclusions and negotiations process, youth engagement, and the Generation Equality campaign.

We’re also excited to offer a 15-minute trauma-informed yoga practice hosted by Exhale to Inhale at 12:45pm (15 minutes before the start of the meeting). Join the Zoom link at 12:45pm to participate. This practice will be perfect for people of all ages and experience!

Date: Thursday, 20 April 2023

Time: 1 – 3pm EDT (Join at 12:45pm to participate in the yoga practice)

Find your timezone here.

Register Here


CoNGO Notes: For information about the collaborative work of NGOs on the above issues, visit the substantive committees under the auspices of CoNGO. Visit here for specific information about the NGO Committee on Status of Women/New York.

RCAP Meeting and CoNGO 75th Anniversary Celebration in Bangkok, May 19 and 20, 2023

Go to this Zoom link to watch the May 19 proceedings of the

CoNGO RCAP Meeting and 75th-Anniversary Commemoration



Invitation to RCAP Bangkok, May 19 and 20, 2023

  1.  The CoNGO RCAP initiative took off in 2017 and has been productive for NGOs/CSOs in the Asia-Pacific Region, facilitating access to the United Nations deliberations on the Sustainable Development Goals, and encouraging intra-regional learning and cooperation processes.
  • This memorandum outlines the situation and planning for RCAP work in 2023 when we will meet in person for the first time after the pandemic that has so long disrupted lives and activities around the world.
  1. You certainly know that UN. ESCAP has scheduled its 2023 Plenary Session  (ESCAP 79) for May 15-19. We are delighted that our generous Bangkok host of many years, Siam University, kindly agrees to again host RCAP 2023 on May 19 and 20. (May 19, the last day of ESCAP, is normally a rather formal set of sessions to approve the conclusions reached  during the preceding week.) As 2023 is CoNGO’s 75th Anniversary, we will also hold a commemorative event for that within the framework of RCAP.
  1. Each year the work of RCAP provides input to the UN High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF)  –  which in 2023 is meeting at the UN.HQ in New York from July 10 to 19.   Information:  hlpf-un-org/ 2023/programme. In addition, an SDG Summit will be held at the UN.HQ in September 2023, to assess progress at approximately the halfway stage of 2015-2030. (
    RCAP can have input to that too.
  1.  This year’s HLPF theme is “Accelerating the recovery from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at all levels”. The 2023 HLPF will review the following SDGs: SDG 6 (Clean water and sanitation), SDG 7 (Affordable and clean energy), SDG 9  (Industry, innovation, infrastructure),  SDG 11 (Sustainable cities and communities), SDG 17  (Partnerships for the SDGs). The Voluntary National Reviews scheduled for HLPF 2023 include the following countries from the RCAP region: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Fiji, Maldives,  Mongolia, Singapore, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam.

Sustainable Development Goal 6 - WikipediaSustainable Development Goal 7 - WikipediaSustainable Development Goal 9: Industry, Innovation and InfrastructureFile:Sustainable Development Goal 11.png - Wikimedia CommonsCommunications materials - United Nations Sustainable Development

  1. Based on past experience, we will again focus RCAP’s content on the key action words of the HLPF theme in 2023, namely “FULL IMPLEMENTATION  OF  THE  2030  AGENDA  FOR  SUSTAINABLE  DEVELOPMENT”.
  • The IMPLEMENTATION of the SDGs is so frequently lacking, and it is in the implementation area that NGOs and CSOs are often setting an example to governments, local authorities, and other stakeholders. So we are hereby inviting all NGOs/CSOs on the RCAP mailing list to send CoNGO a document (text, PPT, chart, etc) via our registration survey describing their specific projects and achievements in implementing one or more of the SDGs that are up for review this year. We want to have examples of grass-roots implementation that involves communities and makes a measurable difference in people’s lives.
  1. As in past years, we shall then use the project reports as the basis for a composite synthesis for submission to the 2023 HLPF.
  1. Under the updated RCAP Terms of Reference, the Steering Committee will be elected at the 2023 RCAP Session. I invite you to consider proposing a candidate.

We look forward to your responses on your Implementation of the SDGs!

Please fill out this registration survey
Your organization’s  SDG implementation documents should be sent to ( by May 3, 2023. 

CoNGO First Vice President

N.B. As a reminder, the following are some relevant international events in the months until the HLPF:

  • Asia Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development, 27-30 March (ESCAP, Bangkok)
  • UN Commission on Population and Development (CPopD16), 16th Session, April 10-14,  New York
  • 17th World Congress on Public Health, May 2-6, Rome   (World Federation of Public Health Associations)
  • International  Labour Conference  (ILC 111),  June 5-16  (Geneva)

Annexe:   RCAP  2023  Logistical Information  and  Provisional  Schedule


RCAP Logistical Information and Provisional Schedule
RCAP Terms of Reference








For any questions, please email

First Global Commemorative Celebration of the 75th Anniversary of CoNGO

First Global Commemorative Celebration of the

75th Anniversary of CoNGO

(Conference of Non-Governmental  Organizations in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations)

APRIL 28, 2023 | 14:00 – 16:45 CET

Venue: Vienna International Centre |  Conference Room 1 | Wagramer Str. 5, 1220 Wien



Those with a UN Vienna grounds pass: Register Here

Those with no UN Vienna grounds pass: Register Here

Zoom Link to the Live Stream Register Here 

Program Invitation


Time Agenda item Name Title
13.57 Music Didier Louis  Bagpiper
14.00 Opening Welcome Martina Gredler  CoNGO Second Vice President
14.02 Opening Video Address H. E. Ghada Fathi Waly Director-General, United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV)
14.07 Video Message H. E. Peter Launsky-


Secretary General, Foreign Ministry of Austria
14.13 Messages Permanent Missions to the United Nations and Other International Organizations at Vienna
14.15 Message Shams Asadi  Human Rights Commissioner | Head, Human Rights Office, City of Vienna
14.19 Music: Jacques Castérède (1926-2014) Flûtes en Vacances Flutists: Katarina Göbel, Ágnes Tóth, & Chiara Zoccola 2. Satz Flûtes Joyeuses
14.24 Presidential Address  Liberato C. Bautista CoNGO President
14.34 Greetings Gillian Sorensen (Co-Chair of CoNGO 75th Anniversary Commemoration) Former UN Assistant Secretary-General for External Relations
14.37 Greetings Patrick Rea (Co-Chair of CoNGO 75th Anniversary Commemoration) International Grand Master Emeritus, OSMTH
14.39 In Memoriam Ilona Graenitz, Marlene Parenzan, and Maria Jonas Former CoNGO Leaders in Vienna
14.42 Music:  Jacques Castérède (1926-2014) Flûtes en Vacances Flutists: Katarina Göbel, Ágnes Tóth, & Chiara Zoccola 1. Satz Flûtes Pastorales  
14.47 Keynote Introduction Martina Gredler  CoNGO Second Vice President
14.50 Keynote 1: Re-Imagining and Re-Narrativizing Multilateralism: Why NGOs and Civil Society Truly Matter Nikhil Seth, UN Assistant Secretary-General, Executive Director  UN Institute for Training and Research
15.05 Keynote 2: Gender Justice and Multilateralism: Achievements and Unfinished Agendas Helga Konrad Former Austrian Federal Minister of Women’s Affairs
15.20 Keynote 3: The Multilateral Human Rights Regime: Civil Society and NGOs in the Development and Promotion of Human Rights Manfred Nowak Secretary General, Global Campus of Human Rights in Venice
15.35 Music 

Jacques Castérède (1926-2014) Flûtes en Vacances 

Flutists: Katarina Göbel, Ágnes Tóth, & Chiara Zoccola 4. Satz Flûtes Légères 
15.40 Greetings and Invitation to the Vin d’honneur Omar Al-Rawi Member of Vienna City Council and Provincial Parliament
15.44 Closing Remarks Martina Gredler  CoNGO Second Vice President

A Vin d’honneur follows the program at the Coffee Corner, Building C opposite Conference Room 1, thanks to the hospitality of the City of Vienna and Regina Wialla-Zimm (International Relations Officer, Chief Executive Office for International Relations, City of Vienna)


CoNGO: 75 Years and Beyond (1948-2023)

“Defining the Present, Shaping the Future, Making the Change Now”

In its 75th year since its founding, CoNGO (Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in Consultative Relationship with the
United Nations) continues the legacy of advocacy for the voice and agency of civil society to be presenced at multilateral meetings at
the United Nations systemwide. Since its founding in 1948, CoNGO has been a significant interface between NGOs, now the broader
civil society, and the United Nations System. CoNGO has consistently promoted, defended, and boosted civil society access—both physical and political—to deliberative and decision-making processes throughout the United Nations System. CoNGO has encouraged and facilitated competent NGO inputs across the whole spectrum of local to planetary issues that constitute the daily and yearly agenda of the United Nations.

CoNGO has often spoken out in defense of the values that the UN and civil society share and has addressed governments with the plea—indeed the demand—that the financial underpinning of the UN is substantially reinforced to enable the Organization to adequately respond to the needs of the planet and its people. The 50+ entities, agencies, commissions, institutes, and other bodies comprising the United Nations System are coping with world, regional, and local aspirations and crises. Civil Society’s engagement with the United Nations is critical to the fulfillment of its mandate and its work, and CoNGO is a persistent and informed advocate of that cause. The depth and breadth of CoNGO’s knowledge of the United Nations System and NGO access to the system are unique.

CoNGO marks its 75th anniversary in 2023, with a look back, of course, but substantially with an eye to the future. The anniversary theme is “Shaping the Present, Shaping the Future, Making the Change, Now.” CoNGO will make the Anniversary a significant milestone on the road of cooperation and interaction between Civil Society—international, national, and grassroots—and the United Nations System. By motivating and galvanizing the entire CoNGO constituency and the United Nations System, CoNGO will build bridges to the future of multilateralism, cutting through the fogs of populism and short-termism. Together, the United Nations and Civil Society can—and must—work to enable future generations to enjoy healthy lives and sustainable livelihoods in greater peace, social justice, democracy, and the rule of law.

The CoNGO 75th Anniversary Committee and the CoNGO Board are undertaking ambitious but realistic goals—all forming part of the vision and direction that the presidency of Liberato Bautista has set to do. They constitute the backdrop to the following activities and events, which will be organized during the 75th Anniversary year and followed through for consolidation in 2024 and 2025: A) Four Anniversary Commemorative celebrations at UN Centres in Vienna (April), Bangkok (May), New York (October), and Geneva (December). Where possible, the events will include lectures and, where appropriate, cultural and hospitality events. B) Production of an anniversary book recounting the 75 years of CoNGO’s interactions among its members and with the UN System. The booklet will honor the giants of CoNGO’s past and present leaders and open a perspective into CoNGO’s future work. This shall include profiles of CoNGO presidents and vice presidents, the NGO substantive committees, and pages about CoNGO member organizations that may want to be featured. C) Six global thematic webinars will follow up on the themes that emerged from a CoNGO Civil Society Summit held in October 2021 with over 1,000 participants in person and online. The six thematic clusters are:

1. Social justice: Migration justice, racial justice, and health justice (March)
2. Pursuing Global Justice: Agenda 2030, sustainable development, and humanitarian action (May)
3. Gender Justice, youth, and intergenerational solidarity (June)
4. Peace and threats to the security of people and the planet (August)
5. UN-NGO relations: enhancing multilateralism, protecting NGO access, civil space and democratic discourse (October)
6. Human dignity and human rights (December)

To achieve CoNGO’s purposes for the 75th Anniversary, CoNGO has the structural benefit of a diverse and multidisciplinary membership of more than 600 organizations, solid and committed global officers and board members, 37 substantive NGO Committees, 37 Substantive Committees worldwide, and high-level 75th Anniversary Committee that provides advice and guidance. Through the involvement of international and national civil society organizations, all of the activities of CoNGO’s forward-looking 75th Anniversary Year will contribute to the achievement of the UN Agenda 2030, the advancement of the UN Secretary General’s “Our Common Agenda,” and the success of the UN 2024 Summit of the Future, including its follow up.

SPONSORSHIP: This program and other events scheduled throughout 2023 in celebration of CoNGO’s 75th anniversary are made possible through the generous contribution of The Mulchand and Parpati Thadhani Foundation, the STUF United Fund, and individual donors.


Keynote Speakers

Please be at the VIC gate no later than 13:30 to go through security and arrive in time for the opening of the event at 14:00.

Event Flyer

UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, 79th Session (Bangkok)

79th session of the Commission | ESCAP

The 79th Session of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific will be held at the United Nations Conference Centre ESCAP Hall in Bangkok, from 15 to 19 May 2023.

This is an in-person event and all participants who appear in the letter of credentials are requested to register online at indico as soon as possible but no later than 21 April 2023. Only the names of duly accredited and registered participants will be included in the list of participants.

The theme of the session is “Accelerating climate action in Asia and the Pacific for sustainable development”, and this annual session will be an opportunity to strengthen regional cooperation on climate change.

For more information about the 79th Session of UNESCAP for Asia and the Pacific, please visit their website.


CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit

Don’t Steal My Childhood: Child Labor and Children in Migration

Don’t Steal My Childhood!
Child Labor and Children in Migration

Despite significant progress in reducing child labor in the past two decades, most recent data show that global progress has stalled since 2016. Forced child labor deprives children of their childhood, their potential and their dignity. It is harmful to their physical and mental health and development, ultimately with severe consequences for the entire society. Therefore, it is crucial to address the problem, especially if we are to reach the ambitious 2025 target date for ending child labor (SDG 8.7).

At the beginning of 2020, the latest global estimates indicated that 1 in 10 children aged 5 and over were involved in child labor worldwide – equating to an estimated 160 million children. A further 8.9 million children will be in child labor by the end of 2022 as a result of rising poverty driven by the pandemic.

Within the already ‘at risk’ group of child laborers, recent analysis points to an even more vulnerable group, namely child migrants. Children in migration, mainly the youngest ones, are at particularly high risk of being exploited and trafficked along migration routes and in host countries.

Some of the literature refers to them as the ‘invisible group,” suggesting that amongst child laborers, migrant children receive less pay, work longer hours, attend school less often, and face higher death rates at work in comparison to local children.
Most governments have failed to develop effective policy responses to assist and protect child laborers despite the fact they are obliged to do so by multiple international acts.

Real progress, however, requires translating these commitments into national laws that are then actually used as tools for action. Nations must also protect and promote other child rights, including birth registration, strong social protection systems, quality education, health care and nutrition starting with mothers and infants. They must also extend protection from violence, abuse, neglect, dire poverty and exploitation, by supporting meaningful economic and livelihood opportunities for adult family members. These rights are guaranteed to all children, all child laborers, and those who need additional special protections, such as migrant children working in child labor.

In particular, measures to prevent and respond to child labor during a humanitarian crisis should link the humanitarian, development, and peace dimensions by using the transformative power of Early Childhood Education and Care Programs. All the measures should help build social cohesion, resilience and peace, and strengthen existing government, economic and social structures.
As an outcome we expect that Member States, UN agencies and NGOs will honor and renew pledges made at the 5th Global Conference on the Elimination of Child Labor -Durban 2022 and most importantly, share their good practices and policies to end child labor, paving the way for a global strategic partnership committed to achieving SDG Targets 8.7 and 16.2 while recognizing synergies between progress on SDG 8 and SDGs 1 (end poverty), 4 (quality education), 5 (gender equality), 10 (reduced inequalities) and 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions).

• Recognize Child Labor as a serious violation of children’s rights enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, in multiple international acts, and in SDGs 8.7 and SDGs 16.2;
• Promote birth registration;
• Stop hiring children below the minimum age and invest in eradicating all forms of slavery;
• Encourage businesses to prohibit child labor;
• Use the link between the labor inspection and workplace occupational safety and health committees to establish a monitoring system;
• Create and enforce policies for reducing the risk of child exploitation and trafficking along migration routes and in host countries;
• Address the special protection needs of smuggled and or trafficked children, those who are seeking asylum, unaccompanied and separated minors and refugees;
• Provide support to children found in child labor, ensuring that they and their families can benefit from all social protection measures;
• Listen to the voices of children currently in child labor, as well as those who survived the experience.


CoNGO Notes: For more information on CoNGO–the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations, visit For specific information about how CoNGO and its substantive committees (also known as NGO Committees) work on matters related to the subject of the event on this page, visit NGO Committees. In particular, visit the NGO Committee on Migration and the NGO Committee on Social Development.

First Global Thematic Webinar: Social Justice–Racial Justice, Migration Justice, and Health Justice (A CoNGO 75th Anniversary Event)





Thursday | March 2, 2023 | | 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM EST, 15h30 to 18h CET

Time Zone Calculator



The Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO) invites you to the first of six global thematic webinars marking its 75th anniversary in 2023 under the overall theme “Defining the present, shaping the future, and making the change, now.” This first webinar in a series of six starts with a focus on Social Justice: migration justice, racial justice, and health justice.


Social justice—or the astonishing lack of it for many people and communities worldwide—is one of the fundamental issues of our time. No country, city, or place has achieved the common human expectation of social justice for all its inhabitants.  Social justice can be characterized as including full respect for the human rights of all persons; equality of treatment and opportunity; non-discrimination on any prohibited grounds (including color, race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, etc.); universal health care; decent work; minimum basic income; decent living conditions; social protection; access to justice for all; peace and human security for all; and a safe and healthy environment.

The UN General Assembly resolution establishing the World Day for Social Justice stated: “The General Assembly recognizes that social development and social justice are indispensable for the achievement and maintenance of peace and security within and among nations and that, in turn, social development and social justice cannot be attained in the absence of peace and security or the absence of respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms.”

The international system embodied by the United Nations and regional community organizations has elaborated binding conventions and other instruments that set out minimum standards and obligations to realize those standards regarding the abovementioned concerns. International supervisory and review mechanisms have been established to support the national implementation of these standards.

Many civil society organizations advocate for and support achieving social justice at local, national, regional, and global levels—with some level of activity in nearly all countries.

The 8 October 2021 Civil Society Summit on Substantive Issues “Shaping the Future: The UN We Need for the World We Want,” organized by CoNGO, highlighted social justice among the significant global critical concerns of all humanity: Human dignity and human rights; Sustainable development and humanitarian action; Peace and threats to the security of people and the planet; Social justice, including migration, racism, and health; Gender justice, youth, and intergenerational solidarity. That summit further emphasized the importance of UN-NGO relations—enhancing multilateralism, ensuring access, and protecting civic space and discourse….

However, contemporary knowledge and evidence indicate that contrary to universal aspirations and normative standards, levels and extent of injustice, violations of human rights, discrimination, and violence on the grounds of color, perceived race, ethnicity, nationality, and national origin, as well as gender, age, etc.; exclusion; indecent working conditions even forced labour; lack of extension of social protection; absence of access to justice; etc. are manifest to greater or less extent in every country.

The Civil Society Summit on Substantive Issues brought together over 1,000 participants worldwide to contribute experience and competences, share doubts about our current world, and collectively articulate aspirations and proposals for the world we want and must achieve. The Civil Society Summit was rich in outlining concepts and actions needed to shape the future.

As a direct outcome, the CoNGO General Assembly resolved to use the outcome of the Summit—the Synthesis Report—as a substantive basis for CoNGO’s programmatic direction, especially highlighting it in 2023, CoNGO’s 75th anniversary year. It agreed to convene a series of six high-level global thematic webinars over the course of 2023 to highlight and engage the global constituency on the critical themes articulated at the Summit and to elaborate on the agenda, responses, and actions necessary to shape a future of human rights, social justice, non-discrimination, peace, sustainable development, human and environmental security, and gender justice and inter-generational solidarity for all.


The CoNGO Board, meeting in March 2022, agreed to turn the six thematic clusters of the Summit into the six thematic clusters of its programmatic directions for the leadership term 2021-2025.  The subsequent board meeting mandated the coalition to organize global thematic webinars addressing those clusters.

The inaugural webinar focuses on Social Justice, with subthemes on Migration Justice, Racial Justice, and Health Justice. This thematic webinar proceeds along the lines articulated by the UN General Assembly on the World Day of Social Justice and the CoNGO Civil Society Summit iterated above. The webinar will identify what areas of change and action are needed, what should be undertaken now, and by whom.

The Synthesis Report from the 2021 Summit graphically referred to these sub-themes: “Slavery, colonialism, racism, militarism, xenophobia, homophobia, ageism, patriarchy, misogyny… are historic injustices that must be combated, and their intersecting complicities {must} be exposed. We must multiply our efforts at eliminating structural and systemic racism…” and discrimination.

The treatment of migrants and refugees in many situations worldwide represents egregious violations and denial of human rights and rights at work, belying the growing dependence of economies and societies worldwide on the international mobility of people –skills, and labour—for sustainable development and well-being. “We heard migrants assert their voice and agency, saying, ‘For a long time, others spoke on our behalf. Now we speak for ourselves.’ Indeed, migrants and refugees must be at the table when their human rights, needs, and concerns are at stake…

The COVID-19 pandemic and our responses have exacerbated the vast gulfs in achieving the human right to the highest attainable physical and mental health standard for all.  Three years on, the pandemic has yet to be resolved, let alone the preparedness of nations and communities to meet future pandemics. “The COVID-19 situation further illustrates the interests of the few taking precedence over the needs of the many. A cardinal principle should be prioritizing people and the planet over profit.”


 9:30 AM: Welcome Remarks

 Dr. Liberato Bautista (President of CoNGO)

 Ms. Gillian Sorensen (Co-Chair, CoNGO 75th Anniversary Committee, and Former UN Assistant Secretary-General for External Relations)

 Brig. Gen. Patrick Rea (Co-Chair, CoNGO 75th Anniversary Committee, and International Grandmaster Emeritus of OSMTH)


9:50 AM: Keynote Speeches

Ms. Helga Konrad (former Federal Minister for Women’s Affairs of the Republic of Austria and a leading expert on human trafficking)

Ms. Anna Biondi (Deputy Director, Bureau for Workers’ Activities, International Labour Organization – ILO)

10:12 AM: Q & A (Questions must be posted on Zoom Q&A and directed to a specific speaker. Questions that will not be answered will be emailed to the speaker).


10:17 AM: Migration Justice (Rapporteur: Ms. Cecilie Kern, Mercy International Association)

 Ms. Eni Lestari (President, International Migrants Alliance, and Indonesian domestic worker in Hong Kong )

 Mr. Patrick Taran (President, Global Migration Policy Associates)

10:36 AM: Q & A (Questions must be posted on Zoom Q&A and directed to a specific speaker. Questions that will not be answered will be emailed to the speaker).


10:41AM Racial Justice (Rapporteur: Ms. Dorothy Davis, Congressional Black Caucus Institute)

Ms. Catherine S. Namakula (Chair, United Nations Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent)

Dr. Edna Maria Santos Roland (Chair, United Nations Group of Independent Eminent Experts on the Implementation of the Durban Declaration and Plan of Action)

11:00 AM: Q & A (Questions must be posted on Zoom Q&A and directed to a specific speaker. Questions that will not be answered will be emailed to the speaker). 


11:06 AM: Health Justice (Rapporteur: Dr. Gill Adynski, International Council of Nurses)

 Prof. Dr. Marianne Legato (Founder, Gender-specific Medicine, Professor at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons)

 Dr. Pamela Cipriano (President, International Council of Nurses)

11:25 AM: Q & A (Questions must be posted on Zoom Q&A and directed to a specific speaker. Questions that will not be answered will be emailed to the speaker).

11:31 AM: Special feature: Celebration of Dr. Franklin Shaffer, Former CEO of CGFNS International and CoNGO Board Secretary

11:30    Dr. Liberato Bautista (CoNGO President)

11:33   Dr. Holly Shaw (International Council of Nurses, Chair of NGO Committee on Mental Health, and NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy)

11:38   Mukul Bakhshi, Esq. (Chief of Strategy and Government Affairs CGFNS International, Inc.)

11:44   Response: Dr. Franklin Shaffer

11:50 AM Report by Webinar Lead Rapporteur

Mr. Cyril Ritchie (CoNGO First Vice President)

11:57 PM Closing Remarks

Dr. Liberato Bautista (President of CoNGO)

 Webinar Co-sponsors

Congressional Black Caucus Institute, General Board of Church and Society of the United Methodist Church, Global Migration Policy Associates, International Council of Nurses, NGO Committee on Migration, National Council of Negro Women, Pan Pacific South East Asia Women’s Association, STUF United Fund, Thadhani Foundation


   Social Justice

  1. ILO: A Global Coalition for Social Justice.–en/index.htm?msdynttrid=0BYLeiS-wduhwzUlSNJ-9-d0cWAB4UJQxkz4Es1KHAY
  2. UN World Day for Social Justice: 2023 Theme: Overcoming Barriers and Unleashing Opportunities for Social Justice.
  3. Co-building an Ecosocial World. Liberato C. Bautista.


  1. Migration, Human Rights & Sustainable Economies: A Century 21 Agenda. Patrick A. Taran, in Revista Tecnológica – Espol, 34(1), Guayaquil, Ecuador 2022.
  2. COVID-19, Migrants, Refugees, Mobile Workers: Global Assessment and Action Agenda. Patrick A Taran & Olga Kadysheva (2022). Revista Tecnológica – Espol, 34(1), Guayaquil
  3. Talking and Doing Points: Churches Witnessing With Migrants.

Racism and Racial Discrimination

  1. Report of the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance: Ecological Crisis, Climate Justice and Racial Justice. E. Tendayi Achiume. UN document A/77/549.
  2. Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent to the Human Rights Council: The Human rights situation of people of African descent remains an urgent concern.
  3. Migrant workers and discrimination: realities, threats, and remedies. August Gachter (2022) in Revista Tecnológica – Espol, 34(1), Guayaquil, Ecuador.
  4. International Standards Against Racism and All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

Health Justice

11. WHO: Closing the gap in a generation: health equity through action on the social determinants of health. 

  1. Civil society organizations calling for vaccine access and equity for all.
  2. The Social Determinants of Health.

CoNGO Resources

  1. CoNGO Civil Society Summit on Substantive Issues.
  2. Synthesis Report of the CoNGO Civil Society Summit on Substantive Issues.
  3. CoNGO Declaration on the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations.


CoNGO Open Mic on UN-NGO Relations (For NGOs in Consultative Status Only)

Dear CoNGO members and NGO Committee leaders,
Greetings. I am sending this message to  members of NGOs listed as members of CoNGO (Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations) and/or members of related NGO committees.
By now, if your NGO is in consultative status with ECOSOC, you or someone in your organization would have received the email below which was sent by the NGO Branch of the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA). If you have not read the email, I encourage you to do so now, including the Concept Note available here.
In response to this UN DESA email–calling on NGOs to send written submissions in preparation for a December 2022 consultation between NGOs and the ECOSOC Committee on NGOs–CoNGO invites CoNGO members to an Open Mic to talk about the questions raised in the concept note.
This Open Mic will help CoNGO prepare its written submission, the deadline of which is August 31. It could also help your NGO prepare its response if you have not already done so.  But irrespective of the deadline, the open mic is a venue to talk about common concerns related to UN-NGO relations, not the least about accreditation and access to and at the UN.
Register in advance: registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
If you are a CoNGO member or NGO Committee officer and want to speak (no more than 3 minutes) during the Open Mic, please email the CoNGO President Liberato Bautista at Please let me know which NGO in our list you are a member of:
For some background information about UN-NGO relations, visit:
I look forward to your participation.
Best regards,

Liberato C. Bautista | Levi

President, Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in 
Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO)

Draw up and enforce legal and moral redlines on crimes against the environment, NGOs urge ongoing CCPCJ session in Vienna

Photo: @CCPCJ Twitter

Vienna, Austria, 18 May 2022 (CoNGO InfoNews) – Close to 50 non-governmental organizations in consultative relationship with the United Nations Economic and Social Council have joined to endorse a statement that asserted “the imperative for the international community to strengthen the international legal framework and international cooperation in the field of crime prevention and criminal justice”.

The statement was drafted under the leadership of the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development in Vienna (NGO CSD Vienna). It was submitted to the thirty-first Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ) now meeting in Vienna, Austria,  from 16th to 20th of May. Accredited NGOs participate in meetings of CCPCJ. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, participation in person remains severely limited. Side events to the ongoing session are only online.

In the statement, civil society leaders asserted that “criminal law has a crucial role to play in drawing up and enforcing the legal and moral ‘red lines’ upon which the global population’s very ability to thrive and survive in its planetary home may well depend.”

Ingeborg Geyer, Chair of the NGO CSD Vienna, described the work of the committee, saying that “it started two years ago  on topics of crimes that affect the environment and followed up with resolutions which were tabled in previous sessions of UNTOC, Crime Congress and CCPCJ sessions.” This statement reinstates and spotlights once more the need to develop the international legal framework and cooperation in preventing what the statement calls “ecocide”.

The Conference of NGOs (CoNGO) and the NGO CSD Vienna collaborated in gathering endorsements of the statement by NGOs around the world. Many NGOs, including CoNGO members, engage the agenda of CCPCJ through the Alliance of NGOs on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice. See their event here. To learn more about the work of CCPCJ, visit Watch the 31st session live, here.



NGO Statement to the 31st Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (Vienna, Austria, 16-20 May 2022)

Strengthening the international legal framework and international cooperation in the context of crimes that affect the environment

“If crime crosses borders, so must law enforcement. If the rule of law is undermined not only in one country, but in many, then those who defend it cannot limit themselves to purely national means.” (Kofi Annan, address to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, 2000).

In the context of crime prevention and criminal justice as they pertain to the environment, the international community faces two major challenges. The first challenge relates to the urgent need to respond forcefully to the rapid rise in crimes affecting the environment. Eurojust,1 the European Union Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation, ranks environmental crime as the fourth largest criminal activity in the world – on a par with drug-trafficking. Most regrettably, law enforcement in this sector remains pitifully low and out of all proportion to the threat it poses. The reasons are manifold. The most significant factors are: (i) the failure of the criteria set out in the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime2 to categorize numerous environmental crimes as ‘serious’; and (ii) the inadequacy of training in the law enforcement agencies, whose staff frequently lack the all-essential investigation and prosecution capabilities.

The second challenge relates to the absence of legal provisions addressing the many and varied instances of severe widespread or long-term harm to the environment. All too frequently, the environmental damage caused is a deleterious side-effect of industrial practices which, though patently dangerous, are nonetheless permissible under law. Similarly, those outcomes represent all too common a breach of civil environmental regulations or are attributable to sheer negligence with regard to safety protocols. In many cases, the environmental damage qualifies as a transnational offence as set out in article 3.2 (a) (b) and (d) of the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.

An offence is transnational in nature if:

(a) It is committed in more than one State;

(b) It is committed in one State but a substantial part of its preparation, planning, direction or control takes place in another State;

(d) It is committed in one State but has substantial effects in another State.

Both of the above challenges arise in the highly perturbing context of the critical global interlinkage between climate change, pollution and nature (biodiversity) loss. Furthermore, recent international reportstell us that these crises must be addressed with immediate urgency if we are to maintain the ability to support human civilization without severe, even irreversible loss and damage, mass migration and food crises.4

Moreover, the two challenges above relate both directly and causally to the current global crisis. The destruction or removal of carbon sinks and keystone species (e.g. via deforestation, poaching and trafficking), as well as severe soil, water and atmospheric pollution are all factors that inevitably exacerbate ecosystem collapse and climate change.

In the light of the foregoing, the imperative for the international community to strengthen the international legal framework and international cooperation in the field of crime prevention and criminal justice could not be clearer. Criminal law has a crucial role to play in drawing up and enforcing the legal and moral ‘red lines’ upon which the global population’s very ability to thrive and survive in its planetary home may well depend.

What form should this strengthening of frameworks and cooperation take? Recent meetings of this Commission have pointed in some useful directions, as indicated in the Chair’s summary documents of November 2021 and February 20225. Themes that emerged from those meetings included: ‘a robust legislative framework’; ‘measuring the impact of crime prevention’; and ‘treating environmental crimes as serious crimes.

The types of cooperation suggested are noteworthy in that they involve both international and cross-sector cooperation. They include the need for: ‘alternative sustainable livelihoods’, ‘the involvement of the private sector’; and ‘consideration of a crime prevention and criminal justice perspective within the broader “nature agenda”’.

Public perception and understanding are acknowledged as key elements in the successful enactment of criminal law: impunity was mentioned as a factor that undermined trust and perception of security, while a number of speakers noted that a culture of integrity was of crucial importance to crime prevention.

Inclusion was also a recurrent theme. Emphasis was placed on the importance that ‘governments and the international community as a whole, including the UN, listen [to] and support youth voices and recommendations.’

In this context it is worth focusing on the consistent demand for the recognition of ecocide as a crime before the International Criminal Court that the young as well as citizens’ assemblieshave voiced in recent years. Criminalizing ecocide would serve several purposes: to hold to account the leaders of criminal organisations and key decision-makers in government and industry alike; remove impunity; and to deter dangerous practices that incur environmental damage, thus strengthening the efficacy of current civil regulations.

We note that an independent expert panel convened by the Stop Ecocide Foundation reached consensus on the legal definition of ‘ecocide’ in 20217. The definition has since gained significant political traction around the world, while the European Law Institute, for its part, is moving ahead on a related EU- specific definition8.

In the light of the foregoing, the undersigned non-governmental organizations in consultative relationship with the United Nations urge the participants in the 31st Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, in particular the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, to strengthen the international legal framework and international cooperation in the context of crimes that affect the environment.

We call on Member States to:

(a) strengthen the sanctioning of crimes incurring severe environmental effects, especially transborder effects, and treating them as ‘serious’ crimes as defined in the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime;

(b) encourage international cooperation between law enforcement agencies so as to improve awareness-building and training related to investigation into and prosecution of transnational offences that affect the environment;

(c) encourage consideration of criminal law frameworks in the context of the broader ‘nature agenda’;

(d) assess current international legal frameworks in the context of the global ‘triple crisis’ and their impact on climate change, pollution and nature loss;

(e) acknowledge and support the recommendations of civil society, in particular the voices of the young, with respect to the international legal framework in the context of the ‘triple crisis’;

(f) ensure participation of local populations and stakeholders in the scope of the Aarhus Convention and Escazú Agreement;

(g) support expansion of existing international legal frameworks for combating crimes affecting the environment, including hazardous legacies, abandoned sites and zones afflicted by war and other belligerent activities;

(h) recognize ‘ecocide’ as a new international crime;

(i) enact policies and enforce legislation with the highest integrity, as well as investigate and punish corruption with respect to crimes that affect the environment;

(j) encourage consideration of the relationship between economic factors and environmental neglect, and its impact on criminal activities;

(k) secure the support of the private sector by providing a reliable framework for combating the destruction of nature and the persistence of corruption, thus enabling those concerned to proceed without incurring existential risks;

(l) strengthen communication with and cooperation between secretariats of the relevant UN agencies so as to sharpen the focus on crimes affecting the environment; and

(m) cooperate with the relevant UN agencies in the implementation of reporting systems so as to facilitate assessment of the impact of crime prevention measures.



1   Eurojust, Report on Eurojust’s Casework on Environmental Crime, January 2021
UNCTOC Article 2 (b)
4 In the context of preparations for Stockholm+50 conference, there have even been references to the current mindset of humanity as “war on nature”.
5 mentation.html
6 Citizens Climate Assembly, France 2020; Global Citizens Assembly, Glasgow 2022
7  See
8  See projects/current- projects/ecocide


Endorsing organizations as of 11 May 2022 were gathered under the auspices of the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO) and its NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna which drafted this statement. Endorsements for purposes of showing continued collaboration among NGOs on the issues raised in this statement are still welcome. To endorse the statement, send an email to the CoNGO President at

  1. African Action on Aids (AAA)
  2. American Association for Psychosocial Rehabilitation (AAPR)
  3. Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP)
  4. CGFNS International, Inc.
  5. Credo-Action (Lomé, Togo)
  6. Criminologists Without Borders
  7. Fracarita International
  8. Graduate Women International (GWI)
  9. Imam Mahdi Association of Marjaeya (I.M.A.M.)
  10. International Alliance of Women (IAW)
  11. International Association of Applied Psychology (IAAP)
  12. International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL)
  13. International Council of Psychologists (ICP)
  14. International Council of Women (ICW)
  15. International Federation of Business and Professional Women (IFBPW)
  16. International Federation of Women Lawyers (IFWL)
  17. International Federation of Women in Legal Careers (IFWLC)
  18. International Federation on Ageing (IFA)
  19. International Inner Wheel (IIW)
  20. International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD)
  21. International Progress Organization (IPO)
  22. International Women’s Year Liaison Group, Japan (IWYLG)
  23. Islamic Relief Worldwide (IRW)
  24. Japan Asia Cultural Exchanges, Inc. (JACE)
  25. Le  Comite Francais des ONG pour la Liaison et l’ Information des Nations
  26. New Humanity
  27. Organization for Defending Victims of Violence (ODVV).
  28. Pan Pacific and South East Asia Women’s Association (PPSEAWA)
  29. Pax Romana | ICMICA
  30. Servas International
  31. Sisters of Charity Federation (SCF)
  32. Socialist International Women (SIW)
  33. Soroptimist International
  34. Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem (OSMTH)
  35. Teresian Association
  36. United Methodist Church-General Board of Church and Society (UMC-GBCS)
  37. Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA)
  38. Universal Peace Federation International (UPFI)
  39. Verein zur Förderung der Völkerverständigung
  40. VIVAT International
  41. WUZDA Ghana
  42. Women’s Federation for World Peace International  (WFWPI)
  43. Women’s International Zionist Organization (WIZO)
  44. World Circle of the Consensus (CMDC-SPOC)
  45. World Society of Victimology  (WSV)
  46. Zonta International


For information about this statement and the work of the  NGO Committee on Sustainable Development–Vienna, email its Chair, Dr. Ingeborg Geyer ( and visit the Committee’s website ( Visit to learn more about the work of CoNGO and its substantive committees.

UNESCO and Multilingualism: A Dialogue Forum

The NGO Committee on Language and Languages presents

UNESCO and Multilingualism: A Dialogue Forum

18 May 2022


For over 70 years, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has been a leading voice on multilingualism.  Today, it engages in numerous initiatives to advance linguistic diversity.  In this forum, UNESCO staff members working on multilingual education, the World Atlas of Languages (WAL), and the International Decade of Indigenous Languages (IDIL) discuss ongoing initiatives and forthcoming developments.  The session follows a show-and-tell and conversation format to facilitate dialogue.  Representatives of NGOs, Secretariat and UN agency staff, and colleagues from Member States are welcome to attend.  A business meeting of the NGO Committee on Language and Languages will take place during the final 40 minutes.

Event Details

The NGO Committee on Language and Languages (CoLL) is hosting the dialogue forum virtually on 18 May 2022.

08:45-11:00 – New York
14:45-17:00 – Geneva
15:45-18:00 – Nairobi
19:45-22:00 – Bangkok


Representatives of NGOs, Secretariat and UN agency staff, and colleagues from Member States are welcome to attend.   There is no fee, but preregistration is required.  Register here as soon as possible, but no later than 16 May.


8:45-9:00am Sign In

9:00-9:05am   Francis M. Hult – Introduction

Interim Vice-Chair, NGO Committee on Language and Languages

9:05-9:10am   Eliot Minchenberg – Welcome

Director of Office and UNESCO Representative to the United Nations in New York

9:10-9:30am   Noro Andriamiseza Ingarao – Multilingual Education

Programme Specialist in Education, UNESCO

9:30-9:50am   Irmgarda Kasinskaite – International Decade of Indigenous Languages

Advisor, Communication and Information, UNESCO

9:50-10:10am Bhanu Neupane – World Atlas of Languages

Advisor, Open Access to Scientific Information and ICT & Sciences, UNESCO

10:10-10:20am General Discussion about the Multilingual Initiatives of UNESCO

10:20-11:00am CoLL Business Meeting

Humphrey Tonkin, presiding

Interim Chair, NGO Committee on Language and Languages


CoNGO Notes: This event is held the NGO Committee on Language and Languages, a substantive committee of the Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO). Learn more about this Committee and how you may collaborate with it by visiting substantive committees.

Financing for Universal and Crisis-Responsive Social Protection and Decent Work: Proposals of 2021 UN Inter-Agency Working Group

Join the NGO Committee on Financing for Development on Tuesday, April 26, from 8 – 9:30am EST for an official side event of the 2022 ECOSOC Financing for Development Forum on Financing for Universal and Crisis-Responsive Social Protection and Decent Work: Proposals of 2021 UN Inter-Agency Working Group


  • H.E. Mr. Phillippe Kridelka, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Belgium to the United Nations
  • Mr. Helmut Schwarzner, Senior Social Security Specialist for the Americas, Social Protection Department, ILO Geneva
  • Mr. David Stewart, Chief of Child Strategy and Social Protection, UNICEF
  • Dr. Santosh Mehrotra, Research Fellow, IZA Institute of Labor Economics, Bonn, Germany
  • Ms. Tikhala Itaye, Director, Global Movement Building, Women in Global Health

Moderator: Dr. Barry Herman, Member Advisory Board, Social Justice in Global Development

Register here:

Co-sponsors: Vivat International, Women First International Fund, Salesian Missions, International Labour Organization, World Vision, Social Justice in Global Development

Background: Social protection refers to assuring a basic income floor and access to basic healthcare throughout the life cycle. It should be provided universally to all people in need, but that is far from current practice. While decent jobs, including self-employment, are mainly in the private economy, meeting the qualifications for most jobs usually requires education and good health, which are primarily public service functions. Thus, programs to promote social protection and decent jobs entail adequate, effective, and fair national systems of taxation, complemented by international assistance, often in the form of technical assistance but also sometimes in aid-financed budget support, as for low-income countries.

The experience of the pandemic laid bare inadequate systems to deliver cash transfers to compensate for the economic costs of the crisis and inadequate public health systems to deliver vaccines, tests, and protective equipment, along with the very limited capacity, especially in developing countries, to maintain employment during the crisis-induced economic contraction. The pandemic experience requires us to think about preparing better “shock responsive” social protection and health systems and stronger counter-cyclical policies. Preparation, in turn, requires consideration of ways to mobilize the necessary domestic and international financial resources on an ongoing basis and with the capacity to meet the higher expenditure needs at times of crisis.

While the inter-agency report concluded with 21 separate proposals, speakers in the side event will be asked to discuss one or more of the proposals. There is no expectation that all 21 proposals would be covered, nor is that necessary. What is necessary is to bring the attention of the FfD Follow-up Forum for consideration by policymakers the work of the 16 cooperating agencies in the task force and the civil society, labor, employer, and youth stakeholders that were consulted in preparing the report.


CoNGO Notes: The NGO Committee on Financing for Development is a Substantive Committee of the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations.

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