Following the July 4th Independence Day celebrations in America the United Nations is poised to commence the High Level Political Forum which reviews the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. For background see my blog of June 14. Registration for JCoR SDG Lab where Congregations are sharing ministries and reporting on their implementation of SDG’s is now open here: https://bit.ly/3OfUqWN
As you will see on that registration page, the schedule of Lab sessions will be as follows:
5 July @ 12:00-13:45 Universal Coordinated Time: Lab Session on SDG 4-Quality Education (part 1 of 2)
6 July @ 12:00-13:45 Universal Coordinated Time: Lab Session on SDG 5-Gender Equality
7 July @ 16:00:17:45 Universal Coordinated Time: Lab Session on SDG 4-Quality Education (part 2 of 2)
11 July @ 12:00-13:45 Universal Coordinated Time: Lab Session on SDG 14-Healthy Aquatic Ecosystems
12 July @ 12:00-13:45 Universal Coordinated Time: Lab Session on SDG `15-Healthy Terrestrial Ecosystems
13 July @ 12:00-13:45 Universal Coordinated Time: Lab Session on SDG 17-Partnerships for the Goals
Good Shepherd are participating on July 5, SDG 4 with a global girls’ panel (India, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Ecuador and Madagascar) speaking to their experiences of education, and reviewing the Voluntary National Reviews (VNT’s) of Sri Lanka and the Philippines. On July 6 Patricia Mosquera (Ecuador) is presenting on SDG 5. On July 7th Genny Dumay from the Philippines is presenting on SDG 4. On July 12th Catharina Indirastuti from Indonesia is presenting on SDG 15 and lastly on July 13th Mary Virgo Espineda from the Philippines is presenting on SDG 17. It is exciting to see such interest and engagement by the Philippines and Sri Lanka in the VNR reports from their countries.
The official website of the HLPF and official program can be easily accessed from the links provided or HERE. All the official programs are live on UN WEB TV and recording will be archived if you wish to review later. A fourth revision of the Ministerial Declaration (the outcome document of the session) has been posed – further consultations took place on June 30. You can check HERE to see the 4th revision and also you will have access to the next version of the document.
Justice Coalition of Religious (JCor) have published the following Bulletin It contains some interesting information – for the United Nations, Global and Regional updates in relevant languages according to region. Some of you already join the JCoR Global Community Hour – It is on 11 March 2022, 8:00am (EST). English-Spanish interpretation is provided – Register Here
There is some very useful information on the Commission on the Status of Women in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese. This is followed by a sections on Latin America and the Caribbean;East and Southern Africa and India.
JCoR have prepared a very comprehensive overview of The Commission on the Status of Women which I encourage you to review. It is currently in English and will appear in Spanish soon.
Good Shepherd have various activities happening in the Virtual Booth hosted on the NGOCSW Forum Platform. Register for the Forum and see all that is happening. There are over 700 events hosted on the Forum. JCoR and UNANIMA have virtual booths as does Coalition Against Prostitution (CAP)
The Calendar for Good Shepherd Events is posted in the Booth but can can access it HERE to join in regional activities directly
Good Shepherd CSW 66 Parallel Event will take place on Wednesday March 16 at 8.00 am EST. Registration for the event is a must if you wish to attend. You can register directly from HERE The event will be on a zoom platform and English, French Spanish and Portuguese interpretation will be provided. We will have an engaging discussion on ‘Empowering Women at the Grassroots through Sustainable Agriculture‘ with panelist from the Good Shepherd International Foundation, India, Democratic Republic of Congo, Philippines and Brazil. REGISTER HERE. We are honoured to have the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family, Republic of Korea co-sponsoring this event with us. We are thrilled to have a girl climate activist from India. Well done Jasmine!
Jasmine, the girl activist from India will also feature on another panel on March 17 at 4.00 p.m. EST. The panel is an all girls’ panel – not to be missed – and the title is “My Voice Our Equal Future” Girls speak to Climate Change. Interpretation will be provided in French and Spanish and registration is essential – REGISTER HERE
All the usual processes for CSW 66 are taking place as the horrors of the war in Ukraine are unfolding before our eyes – the invasion of a country, the total disregard for life – for any life and every life accompanied with the destruction and devastation of Ukraine’s infrastructure generating millions of refugees. The response to this humanitarian crisis with its emotional, traumatic, economic and devastating toll on the peoples of Ukraine witnesses to the power of sharing, concern and humanity. It was indeed inspiring to hear the Ambassador of Poland speak of themselves as a ‘superpower of solidarity.’ In the face of such catastrophe the United Nations is held captive and the spirit that created the United Nations is being challenged by the same power that has invaded Ukraine. Quoting the Preamble to the Charter of the United Nations
“WE THE PEOPLES OF THE UNITED NATIONS DETERMINED
to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small, and to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained, and to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom,
AND FOR THESE ENDS
to practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbours, and to unite our strength to maintain international peace and security, and to ensure, by the acceptance of principles and the institution of methods, that armed force shall not be used, save in the common interest, and to employ international machinery for the promotion of the economic and social advancement of all peoples,
HAVE RESOLVED TO COMBINE OUR EFFORTS TO ACCOMPLISH THESE AIMS.”
Over the last few years I have witnessed the demise of a spirit of multilateralism at the United Nations and the stubborn persistence of patriarchal structures and systems that reinforce power and privilege over peoples, nations, women and the exigences of climate change. The Secretary General of the United Nations has referred to a recent report from the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change, as “an atlas of human suffering and a damning indictment of failed climate leadership,” showing nearly half of humanity “living in the danger zone” and many ecosystems at the point of no return—right now. “With fact upon fact, this report reveals how people and the planet are getting clobbered by climate change.” Read More. The world community continues to struggle to access vaccines to counter COVID 19. There are multiple other conflicts throughout the world oppressing people’s voices and freedom condemning people to poverty, creating an never ending line of refugees. Girls and women are often targeted in conflict situations – sexual assault, rape and vulnerability to human traffickers offering opportunities for better life and a job snaring these same girls and women into a system and structure of gender based violence within prostitution.
Today, International’s Women’s Day with the theme of ‘Gender Equality Today for a Sustainable Tomorow‘ is at the heart of CSW 66 ‘Achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls in the context of climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction policies and programmes.’ We have our Position Paper on Ecological Justice. On page 14, Paragraph 5 “We admit our complicity in perpetuating dualistic and domineering attitudes about the earth. We understand that reconciliation with our earth calls for a new consciousness, a new identity, and new behaviors centered on the kinship of all creation and the implementation of human rights for all. Interdependence demands inclusion of all – non-living and living, non-human and human – without discrimination.” Our Congregational Chapter 2021 Direction Statement references our commitment to the ‘Laudato Si Goals’ Response to the Cry of the Earth, Response to the Cry of the Poor, Ecological Economics, Adoption of Sustainable Lifestyles, Ecological Education, Ecological Spirituality, Community Resilience and Empowerment. Read more and in multiple languages The Laudato Si Goals parallel very closely the United Nations Framework for Sustainable Development – the 17 Sustainable Development Goals with SDG 5 one Gender Equality at the heart of transformation and sustainability.
Happy International Women’s Day and Welcome to CSW 66.
Generation Equlaity Forum will have its launch of the Action Colations in Paris between June 30 and July 2, 2021 Registration is open until Sunday June 27 (midnight Paris time) Register Here For those who register the site will open on June 29th with opportunities to explore the virtual site. It is helpful if you have the agenda at hand to navigate your way to the venues for the different meetings.
The Agenda is in PDF format in EnglishSpanishFrench. Together with the 6 Action Coalitions there is the Women, Peace and Security, and Humanitarian Action Compact. These will launch in 7 different session during July 1 and 2. The programme is structured around 7 themes. On June 30th and July 2nd there are 14 different events at the intersection of Gender Equality and other types of activism. Room Belleville hosts the Young Feminists on July 1 and 2 with 15 events scheduled. Theme four ‘Everyone Acts for Equal has 15 events over June 30, July 1 and 2. Theme 5‘Drivers for Change’ has 21 events over the 3 days. My pick from this schedule (i) Where is the Money for Girls? Resourcing Girls Organization (July 2, 10.00 – 10.45 CET); (ii) Activating Faith, Feminism and Freedom to Choose (July 1, 11.20 – 12.05 CET); (iii) Two events on Girls Education July 1, 10.00 – 11.00 and July 2, 4.00 – 500 (CET) and (iv) Ratification of ILO Convention 190 on Violence and Harrassment in the World of Work July 2 5.30 – 6.30 (CET). Theme 6 take up a Feminist response to COVID 19 organizing eleven events over the three days and Theme 7 “Intra Regional conversations around Gender Equality” hosts ten events over the three days. The Opening and Closing events are ceremonial.
The six Action Coaliton leads are comprised of representatives from Government, UN Entities, Civil Society, Youth Led Organizations and Private Companies and Philantrophy. SEE There are between 15 and 18 Leads in each coaliton. The Action Coalitons propose a road map for Gender Equality to deliver concrete results in six thematic areas. The plan is poised to acelerate concrete progress on the Sustainable Development Goals. Mobilization for Committment Makers in each area had been issued and is now closed. It may reopen after the Fourm. The following 5 criteria are considered as being essential for any committment: (i) Potential for Impact; (ii) Funding; (iii) Level of Endorsement; (iv) Collective in nature and (v) SMART. Committments can either be Financial, Advocacy, Policy, or Programatic See more
A set of Powerpoints has been prepared to give a broad overview of each coalition, outlining four actions with associated targets
A disappointing end to the High Level Political Forum. Throughout the two weeks words abounded calling for accelerated action but the political will of the member states was lacking and we are without a ministerial declaration with committed resources to ‘build back better.’ Remember this was the theme “Accelerated action and transformative pathways: realizing the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development “.
An overall impression of the Forum was provided by Deputy-Secretary of the United Nations, Amina Mohammed. “It is clear from your discussions and from recent progress reports that the left behind are still being left behind. We simply must do more — much more — to reach the most excluded and discriminated in our societies — including migrants and refugees, women and girls, and persons with disabilities. We must respond with greater urgency to the moral shame that is world hunger and to the risks facing hundreds of millions of people living in fragile and conflict affected contexts. We must channel greater investment towards the full empowerment and employment of young people, We must speed up – not fall back – on our push for gender equality. And we truly must come to terms with the requirements of SDG10 – recognizing that extreme inequality is never inevitable” Read the full text or see the Video Recording
The closing words of the President of the Economic and Social Council , H.E. Ms Mona Juul ‘We also want to strongly reaffirm our commitment to multilateralism and international solidarity in the context of the COVID-19 crisis. I think we are close to an agreement on a declaration that will be visionary, well balanced, action-oriented, and focused on the key challenges of our times. I encourage all member states to support a consensus-based adoption of the Declaration very soon – its core messages are certainly more important than ever.’ Full Text
The GSIJP Team – Alexis Schutz and Donatus Lili were active and engaged and captured on virtual platforms.
The templates in vibrant colors drew attention to the theme of the day, the crosscutting nature of the agenda and the intersection of the SDG’s.
while the Tweets send out the messages and calls for action.
Voici les liens vers une boîte à outils publiée en trois langues: Boîte à Outils
What dots would Good Shepherd be connecting? Human Rights, Gender Equality, and Poverty Eradication in the context of Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals!
¿Qué puntos estaría conectando el Buen Pastor?Derechos humanos, igualdad de género y erradicación de la pobreza en el contexto del desarrollo sostenible y los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible!
Quels points le Bon Pasteur se connecterait-il? Droits de la personne, égalité des genres et éradication de la pauvreté dans le contexte du développement durable et des objectifs de développement durable!
Yesterday, July 19th the HLPF ended with the adoption of the Ministerial Declaration but not without some challenges. A vote was requested on paragraphs 4 and 21. Both paragraphs were retained the controversial issues being ‘self determination of people living under foreign occupation and language on multilateral trading systems. A full account of the session can be READ HERE
The review of SDGs 1, 2, 3, 5, 9 and 14 is contained in paragraphs 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 and 19 of the Ministerial Declaration The various paragraphs state the reality, and indicate commitment to close the gaps. Paragraphs 1 – 13 are a reiteration of promises already made through use of the following verbs – reaffirm (2), recognize (4), commit (3), foster (1), stress (1), note (1) reiterate (1) (the number after the verb indicates the number of times the verb is used.)
Paragraphs 20 recognizes that despite some positive development more is needed – coherent policies and an enabling environment for sustainable development at all levels by all actors. The following listing is provided: difficult macroeconomic conditions, low commodity prices, subdued trade growth and volatile capital flows, but also natural disasters, climate change, environmental degradation, humanitarian crisis and conflicts. Having said that yet there is conflict over paragraph 21.
The retention of the whole document is a step forward and much advocacy took place to ensure that there was a ministerial declaration.
I signed on this Statement by the Women’s Major Group calling for a strong declaration with full commitment to gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls with the Means of Implementation SEE
During the negotiations on the Ministerial Declaration June 15 and 16 I delivered the following statement on behalf of the Women’s Major Group Statement
During the negotiations I had the following Advocacy Points Reviewing the ministerial declaration you will see that they were not included. The most disconcerting one is the continued mention of ‘targeted measures’ in paragraph 14 in the context of a declaration to eradicate poverty, accelerate the pace of implementation, and decisive action is imperative and in response the best we can do is ‘targeted’ measures! While children and youth are recognized within the Major Group system and there are stakeholders on aging and people with disabilities and a strong emphasis on a life cycle approach I continue to hold that girls are most vulnerable to being left behind and being the ones furthest behind.
The Global Alliance for Tax Justice is a growing movement of civil society organisations and activists, including trade unions, united in campaigning for greater transparency, democratic oversight and redistribution of wealth in national and global tax systems.
The Global Alliance for Tax Justice comprise the five regional networks of Africa, Latin America, Asia-Australia, North America and Europe, which collectively represent hundreds of organisations. The website is in ENGLISH and SPANISH
This campaign is launching on March 8th – International Women’s Day and ending on March 24th when the Commission on the Status of Women ends its 61st session with an outcome document on ‘Women’s Economic Empowerment in the changing world of work.’ See ENGLISH and SPANISH A copy of the ‘draft agreed conclusion’ (English only) has been published. This will form the basis for negotiations among member states during the Commission. While there is mention of the establishment of universal social protection floors (page 4 (m) to ensure access to social protection for all there is no reference as to how these floors could be financed.
#TaxJustice is a call to our governments to stop the global scandal of corporate tax dodging, end illicit financial flows, and transform inequitable fiscal policies in order to fund and fulfill women’s rights. An excellent overview of the issue WHAT’S AT STAKE? ¿QUÉ ESTÁ EN JUEGO? is on one page ENGLISH and SPANISH Print out and bring these points to discussion groups.
“There is an urgent need to raise domestic revenue for the gender-sensitive public services, social protections, and infrastructure essential to women’s equal human development and equality. Emphasize that progressive tax policies are required to advance women’s rights and economic equality.”
“Hay una urgente necesidad de recaudar un ingreso doméstico para los servicios públicos que comprenda un enfoque de género, así como protección social e infraestructura esencial al desarrollo humano igualitario de las mujeres y a la igualdad. Enfatizar que se necesitan políticas fiscales progresivas para potenciar los derechos de las mujeres y la igualdad económica.”
The #TaxJustice for Women’s Rights Global Days of Action campaign is an initiative of the Global Alliance for Tax Justice, GATJ Tax & Gender and Global Action Working groups, and committed partners including Public Services International, the International Trade Union Confederation, Association for Women’s Rights in Development, Center for Economic and Social Rights, ActionAid, Christian Aid, Oxfam and Tax Justice Network.
Suggestions towards Good Shepherd Action:
a) During the days of 8-24 March, post on your Facebook and/or Twitter account what you are learning about #TaxJustice for Women’s Rights.
b) Alternatively, read what is posted on my Facebook page or the GSIJP Facebook page. LIKE and SHARE with your friends. Ask questions for clarification – answer questions – make suggestions.
c) Many suggestions are available on the website
d) Use the following hashtags: #IWD2017 / #taxjustice / #womensrights / #UNCSW17
Looking forward to seeing you on Facebook and Twitter.
Sugerencias para la acción de Buen Pastor:
a) Durante los días del 8 al 24 de marzo, publica en tu cuenta de Facebook y / o Twitter lo que estás aprendiendo sobre #TaxJustice (Justicia Fiscal) por los Derechos de la Mujer.
b) Alternativamente, lee lo que se publica en mi página de Facebook o en la página de Facebook de la OIJPBP. Haz clic en “ME GUSTA” y COMPARTE con tus amigos. Haz preguntas para aclaración – responde a preguntas – haz sugerencias.
c) Muchas sugerencias están disponibles en el sitio web.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon will complete his second term in December 2016. The process for a new UN Secretary General is ongoing. Felix Dodd in his blog has accounts of two straw votes that have been taken in the UN Security Council. First Straw Vote and Second Straw Vote You can see here the dominant role of countries with veto vote in the Security Council!
There is a vibrant campaign to elect a woman UN Secretary General – Read more here with a reflection on the position from the women’s perspective.
For background and the list of candidates CLICK HERE
UN Women released on October 16th its new report, the World Survey on the Role of Women in Development 2014: Gender Equality and Sustainable Development. Read more
The event was also webcast.
There was another event which I attended. The contributing authors of the report spoke – Melissa Leach, Director of the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, UK, lead author; Isha Ray, Professor of Energy and Resources, University of California, Berkeley, contributing author; Hilal Elver, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food; and Zenebework Tadesse, independent researcher, Ethiopia.
The report is situated in the every day of reality of girls and women cooking and eating, breathing, urinating and defecating, studying and working in the night – these are all environmental acts. Everyday activity affects the environment. Care of the environment in the report is seen from the toilet not the stratosphere.
Did you read the post of March 22 – Gender Equality to end poverty? The statement highlights the centrality of gender equality to the achievement of human sustainable development and poverty eradication, as well as achievement of the other development goals. The statement has been further developed and signatures are invited. You can read the full statementto High Level Panel and Sign here to endorse the call for Gender Equality to End Poverty