Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation

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OMI UN Update – February and March 2013

February 20th, 2013

The United Nations Commission on Social Development recently concluded its 10 day session in a call to give the poorest and most vulnerable populations the tools they need to lift themselves out of poverty

According to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s latest report on promoting people’s empowerment, nearly 80% of the world’s population is without adequate access to social protection, leaving those feeling powerless to improve their position.  The report also states that while more than 600 million people have overcome poverty since 1990, 1 billion people are still struggling to reach that goal by 2015.  Globally 200 million people were unemployed at the end of 2011, an increase of 27 million jobless persons since 2007 and 621 million young people are neither in employment, school or training nor looking for work.

The Civil Society Forum held on February 5 presented its recommendations.  To read this, go to: and click Civil Society Declaration.  Our NGO community was very present and active during these days.  Here is a summary of NGO statements and recommendations presented during the Commission:


  • Promoting the empowerment of people in achieving poverty eradication, social integration and full employment and decent work for all.

United Nations Empowerment Definition:

  • Having a sense of self-worth; the right to make choices; access to opportunities and resources; the capacity to influence social change.

Important /Prevalent Social Development Issues:

  • Ageing, Youth, Civil Societies, Cooperation amongst society, corporations and government, Disability, Employment, Indigenous People, Family, Poverty, Social Integration and Social Protection.
  • Every issue is interconnected and addressing one affects the other.
  • Global collaboration and cooperation is a necessity to successfully address the priority theme.

Common Threads in Factors Impacting Poverty:

  • Lack of economic growth, poor government policies, inadequate focus on educational needs, large corporations, corrupt politicians and rapid population growth.

Common Threads in Factors Impacting Youth:

  • Lack of quality in education, rapid population growth, youth unemployment, lack of social integration, lack of youth participation, negative stereotypes regarding youth, political instability and social breakdown.

Common Treads in Factors Impacting Ageing:

  • Lack of policies targeted towards addressing needing of Ageing population (social protection), poverty, high unemployment rates, discrimination against the elderly, poor socially uplifting programs, economic hardships, lack of appreciation and value of experiences and knowledge and lack of participation.

The following are some common threads in written statements of the NGO Community:


  • Ensure the “humanization of employment and the dignity of labor”; invest in women’s education; invest in higher education and skills development for youth; develop, organize and support the private /citizen sector.


  • Completing education; balance between rural and urban areas, stable and inclusive political, economic and legal institutions; modernizations and accessibility to technology; services, health and education in rural areas; emphasis on equality and human rights.


  • Combine academic education with vocational education; fund youth projects; opportunities and employment; mobilize and engage youth in national debates and policy-making; youth voice via delegations/councils; value youth and their ability to communicate globally and across borders.


  • Emphasis on creating Policies and programs for Caring, Active and /Graceful Ageing of the elderly population; addressing their Health, Employment and Social needs; valuing and leveraging their experiences and skills to help train and better the younger population; universal implementation of social protection floor plan (SPF)

Social integration:

  • Emphasis on basic level of equality; teach social inclusion in school/curriculum; value and appreciate diversity; engage youth and societies to respect, promote and celebrate non-discrimination and tolerance; equal employment/opportunities in private and public sector

Social protection:

  • Effective implementation of social/labor rights; social protection floor plan (SPF) for HIV, elderly, disaster victims, poor and disabled; food security; universal access and set minimum standards for basic health, education, housing, water, sanitation; civil society should monitor SPF

(Prepared by Baha’a International Community United Nations Office)

Commission on the Status of Women

CSW 2013

The fifty-seventh session of the Commission on the Status of Women will take place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from 4 to 15 March 2013. Representatives from Member States, UN entities, and NGOs in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) from all regions of the world will attend the session. The two-week session will include a high-level round table, interactive dialogues and panels, and parallel events.

The 2013 session will focus on the following key areas:

Priority Theme: Elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls

Review Theme: The equal sharing of responsibilities between women and men, including caregiving in the context of HIV/AIDS

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