human rights violations

World Day Against Trafficking in Persons

Trafficking in persons is a serious crime and a grave violation of human rights. Every year, thousands of men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad. Almost every country in the world is affected by trafficking, whether as a country of origin, transit or destination for victims. UNODC, as guardian of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC) and the Protocols thereto, assists States in their efforts to implement the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons (Trafficking in Persons Protocol).

The Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons defines Trafficking in Persons as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.

The World Day against Trafficking in Persons was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly, in its resolution A/RES/68/192.

Did you know:

  • In 2018 about 50,000 human trafficking victims were detected and reported by 148 countries.
  • 50 per cent of detected victims were trafficked for sexual exploitation, 38 per cent were exploited for forced labour.
  • Female victims continue to be the primary targets. Women make up 46% and girls 19% of all victims of trafficking.
  • Globally, one in every three victims detected is a child.
  • The share of children among detected trafficking victims has tripled, while the share of boys has increased five times over the past 15 years.

To learn more about the Blue Heart campaign and how the UN commemorates this observance, visit un.org/en/observances/end-human-trafficking-day.

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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 Alliance of NGOs on Crime Prevention & Criminal Justice, please visit crimealliance.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org.

Nelson Mandela International Day

Nelson Mandela devoted his life to the service of humanity — as a human rights lawyer, a prisoner of conscience, an international peacemaker and the first democratically elected president of a free South Africa.

November 2009 – in recognition of the former South African President’s contribution to the culture of peace and freedom, UN General Assembly declares 18 July “Nelson Mandela International Day.” Resolution A/RES/64/13 recognizes Mandela’s values and his dedication to the service of humanity in: conflict resolution; race relations; promotion and protection of human rights; reconciliation; gender equality and the rights of children and other vulnerable groups; the fight against poverty; the promotion of social justice. The resolution acknowledges his contribution to the struggle for democracy internationally and the promotion of a culture of peace throughout the world.

Last year, coinciding with the date of the Nelson Mandela International Day, UN Secretary-General António Guterres delivered the 18th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture. In his speech, “Tackling the Inequality Pandemic: A New Social Contract for a New Era,” the Secretary-General takes aim at the various layers of inequality that are being exposed and exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

For more information about Nelson Mandela and view UN materials on his life and message, check out nelsonmandela.org/content/page/annual-lecture or un.org/en/events/mandeladay.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information 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 bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

Promising Practices: Protecting Migrant and Refugee Victims of Xenophobia and Intolerance in the Context of the Coronavirus Pandemic

The NGO Committee on Migration‘ s Subcommittee on Xenophobia, Racism and Social Inclusion invites you to a virtual Side Event in parallel with the UN High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) to present and discuss a just-completed survey on promising practices developed by front-line organizations working with migrants in this COVID-era.

Read the full concept note here and register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Migration, please visit ngo-migration.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Children’s Rights, please visit childrightsny.org

Re-imagining The Future We Need: Community voices for a healthy, green and just recovery

NGO Major Group Side Event

This side event at the UN’s High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) 2021 will hear directly from community voices from different parts of the world on action steps needed for a sustainable and resilient recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. A priority of this session is to ensure the lived experiences of those who are most severely affected by the pandemic are directly included in national assessments of the inter-connected challenges faced by us all; and in setting priorities for a fairer and more sustainable future.

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_OI59RbzfQuWbXXLRG4PJwA

Agenda

Opening keynote: One planet, one health: healthy people, healthy nature and healthy planet: Ambassador Christian Frutiger, Assistant Director General, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, Switzerland

Panel includes:

  • Fatimatou Sall, President, Association of young water and sanitation professionals of Senegal
  • Naeem Abbas, Advocacy Manager, The Brooke, Pakistan
  • Sanjoy Hazarika, International Director, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI)
  • Ingrid Rostad, Co-chair of the MG Facilitating Committee at UNEP

Q&A with participants and inputs from NGO Major Group regional partners to share specific experiences from regional and national contexts

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Major Group, please visit ngomg.org. 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 Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.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.

Open Global Civil Society Consultation on IMRF

First Open Global Civil Society Consultation on the International Migration Review Forum (IMRF)

To prepare for collective civil society self-organizing towards the IMRF, we will review initial civil society ideas, expectations and strategies for our engagement in the IMRF during the consultation. These inputs will then be presented to Member States in a series of dialogues over the next 12 months.

All civil society organizations are invited to join us for this global civil society consultation on the IMRF. Register here! Consultation co-facilitators: Alma Maquitico (NNIRR), Apolinar Tolentino (BWI/CGU), Cecilie Kern (NGO CoM), Marta Verani (MGCY)

Agenda

A. Opening Plenary: Setting the Stage 

i. Technical intro

ii. Welcome and introduction to the agenda

iii. Context and road to IMRF, AC survey results, IMRF modalities for civil society etc.

iv. Summary reports on GCM implementation (reports from RMRFs from regional networks) – what has been accomplished, what has not?

  • i. Africa
  • ii. Arab States
  • iii. Asia-Pacific
  • iv. Europe and North America
  • v. Latin America and Caribbean

B. Breakout discussions on civil society priorities in GCM implementation, and IMRF modalities

Intro: breakout goals and questions, and Zoom rooms mechanics

2 i. Discussion on civil society benchmarks for GCM implementation (For this discussion, you may choose from one of these following thematic priorities to discuss benchmarks and progress, or use any other themes you wish to highlight…)

  • Labor Migration and a New Social Contract
  • Racism, Ethnicity and Discrimination
  • Detentions and Returns
  • Regular Pathways and Irregular Migration
  • Climate Change
  • Other

a. What benchmarks should be used to measure GCM implementation?

b. What would GCM progress look like in a national/regional context? ii.

Discussion on IMRF modalities 

  • a. Based on the current IMRF modalities for civil society participation, do you see any challenges that you and your members will face to participate fully in the IMRF?
  • b. How do you think the official civil society rapporteur for the IMRF should be selected?

C. Plenary discussion on main points

  • i. Short reports by group rapporteurs
  • ii. Summary of the discussions and identifying key inputs to present to Member States

D. Closing remarks and next steps

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

International Day in Support of Victims of Torture

The UN International Day in Support of Victims of Torture on 26 June marks the moment in 1987 when the UN Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, one of the key instruments in fighting torture, came into effect. Today, the Convention has been ratified by 162 countries.

Torture seeks to annihilate the victim’s personality and denies the inherent dignity of the human being. Despite the absolute prohibition of torture under international law, torture persist in all regions of the world. Concerns about protecting national security and borders are increasingly used to allow torture and other forms of cruel, degrading and inhuman treatment. Its pervasive consequences often go beyond the isolated act on an individual; and can be transmitted through generations and lead to cycles of violence.

The United Nations has condemned torture from the outset as one of the vilest acts perpetrated by human beings on their fellow human beings.

Torture is a crime under international law. According to all relevant instruments, it is absolutely prohibited and cannot be justified under any circumstances. This prohibition forms part of customary international law, which means that it is binding on every member of the international community, regardless of whether a State has ratified international treaties in which torture is expressly prohibited. The systematic or widespread practice of torture constitutes a crime against humanity.

On 12 December 1997, by resolution 52/149, the UN General Assembly proclaimed 26 June the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, with a view to the total eradication of torture and the effective functioning of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

26 June is an opportunity to call on all stakeholders including UN Member States, civil society and individuals everywhere to unite in support of the hundreds of thousands of people around the world who have been victims of torture and those who are still tortured today.

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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 Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@gmail.com or bknotts@uua.org. For more information on the NGO Alliance on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, please visit crimealliance.org/about.

Principles and Process: Civil Society Mobilization for Meaningful Post-UN75 Implementation Roundtable

The Coalition for the UN We Need and the Stimson Center will host a roundtable discussion to review recommendations from the Fulfilling the UN75 Declaration Expert Roundtable Series through the lens of a framework of principles for civil society engagement and mobilization – “A People’s Commitment” – that formed part of the UN75 People’s Declaration and Plan for Global Action, adopted in May 2020.

Register here!

Featured Speakers

  • Maria Fernanda Espinosa, Member, Group of Women Leaders: Voices for Change and Inclusion and former President of the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly
  • Dan Perell, Representative to the United Nations, Baha’i International Community
  • Natalie Samarasinghe, Executive Director, United Nations Association of the United Kingdom
  • Jeffery Huffines, Senior Advisor, Coalition for the UN We Need
  • Maja Groff, Convenor, Climate Governance Commission (Global Challenges Foundation)
  • Cristina Petcu, Research Analyst, Global Governance, Justice & Security Program, Stimson Center

Moderated by Fergus Watt, Coordinator, Coalition for the UN We Need

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

Regular Pathways and Irregular Migration

Join GRFDT in the second round of virtual meetings, this one focused on “Regular Pathways and Irregular Migration.” This round will build on the action points from the first round. A moderator will guide the 90-minute open conversations and will go around the regions to collect participants’ insights.

Register here: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJMkce6grjsrHtVe4SfYkG-gUWPFyW72hYo3

Recognize that in the absence of adequate, rights-respecting regular migration pathways, people who need to move for livelihood or other reasons will still do so and must not be criminalized for it.

Moderator: Mr. Oscar A. Chacon – Executive Director, Alianza Americas

Action Points:

1. Change the narratives – towards a reconceptualization approach

2. Unpack irregular migration into different thematics (intersectionality)

3. Pushing for the principle of non-discrimination

4. Moving forward with a multilateral approach

5. Family reunification

6. Temporary labour migration

7. Regular pathways and climate change

The Organizers: Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA), the Cross-Regional Center for Refugees and Migrants (CCRM), the Global Research Forum on Diaspora and Transnationalism (GRFDT), the Civil Society Action CommitteeAlianza Americas, the Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM), and the Climate Migration & Displacement Platform (CMDP)

Simultaneous interpretation in Arabic, English, French, & Spanish

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Migration, please visit ngo-migration.org. 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. 

Abolition 2000, global civil society network for the elimination of nuclear weapons

PNND members, partners and supporters are invited to participate in the annual meeting of Abolition 2000, the global civil society network for the elimination of nuclear weapons.

Abolition 2000 was established in 1995 during the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review and Extension Conference. Over 2000 organizations from around the world have endorsed the Abolition 2000 founding statement which outlines a mix of incremental and comprehensive measures to achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world.

Abolition 2000 builds cooperation between civil society and legislators through its partnership with PNND. The Annual Meeting provides an opportunity to share ideas and initiatives, discuss strategy and build cooperation for more effective campaigns and policy actions.

See below for details about the program. Click here to register for the meeting. We invite you to read the PNND Report for the Abolition 2000 meeting. Additionally, in preparation for the annual meeting, Abolition 2000 has interviewed 6 people, from a range of backgrounds in peace and disarmament. They address the theme of the 2021 annual meeting: How do we move from a dysfunctional world to a world free of nuclear weapons? Click here see the interviews: youtube.com/playlist?list=PLNLSpPdpFraCBUmKLTTxP9qTX1vviq3jN

The meeting will be held in two sessions of 90 minutes each:

Session 1: Campaign updates and reports. Strategy discussion on challenges and opportunities to advance nuclear abolition. Introduction of proposals.

Session 2:Discussion of proposals. Abolition 2000 Secretariat report. Fundraising. Affirmation of the Abolition 2000 Coordinating Committee and Global Council. Calendar of upcoming events.

In order to enable participation by organisations and activists around the world, Session 1 will be held twice:
Session 1 (a) is timed to suit participation by those from Asia/Pacific.
Session 1 (b) is timed to suit participation by those from the Americas and Europe.

Click here for more information including the Session times for your location. Click here to register for the meeting.

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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 Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org.

International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict

2021 observance: “Building back better: Supporting survivors of conflict-related sexual violence in the context of pandemic recovery”

Join us from 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm EDT on Thursday, 17 June 2021 via UN WebTV live webcast

Commemorating the 7th official observance, this year’s virtual event is co-hosted by the Office of the SRSG on Sexual Violence in Conflict, the Office of the SRSG on Children and Armed Conflict and the Permanent Mission of Argentina to the United Nations.

The purpose of the event is to stand in solidarity with the survivors and those working to support them on the frontlines, often at great personal risk, particularly in the current climate of intersecting crises. The event will provide a platform for strategic reflection on ways to integrate the specific rights, needs and perspectives of survivors of CRSV into national and regional COVID-19 response and recovery plans, to ensure they are not forgotten in a climate of intersecting crises and constrained resources.

The impact of COVID-19 on survivors of conflict-related sexual violence

The chronic underreporting of conflict-related sexual violence, due to stigma, insecurity, fear of reprisals, and lack of services, has been compounded by COVID-19 containment measures. Lockdowns, curfews, quarantines, fears of contracting or transmitting the virus, mobility restrictions, and limited access to services and safe spaces, as shelters closed and clinics were repurposed for the pandemic response, added a layer of complexity to existing structural, institutional and sociocultural barriers to reporting.

Proactive measures to foster an enabling environment for survivors to safely come forward and seek redress have become more urgent than ever. The pandemic has laid bare the intersecting inequalities that plague our societies, as compounded by conflict, displacement, and institutional fragility. The only solution for these overlapping ills is an injection of political resolve and resources equal to the scale of the challenge.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-NY, please visit ngocsw.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch.  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 Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. 

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