The State of Global Fish Stocks and Opportunities for Sustainable Fishery Development

 

The current status of global stocks and the opportunities evident for sustainable development were discussed at the side event entitled “The State of Global Fish Stocks and Opportunities for Sustainable Fishery Development”. The fundamental nature of having a comprehensive understanding of the state of the world’s fisheries was conveyed ardently. To augment trade opportunities, food security, the livelihood of the general public, and to indulge SDGs surrounding goal fourteen, status assessments of fisheries were depicted as essential.

In particular, the lives of people living in developing nations and small island developing states (SIDs) were discussed. These individuals often have the most dependence on fisheries for financial support.

In addition, the event discussed the issues surrounding a statistic by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations. The statistic explained that from 1974 to 2013 the percentage of biologically sustainable world marine fish stocks decreased from ninety percent to sixty-nine percent.

Furthermore, the issue of overfishing was conveyed. This can decrease food production and biodiversity, and can also hinder the manner in which the ecosystem functions. The side event explored the nature of capture production and promoted a call to action to decrease the gap in understanding in order to allow for more effective management of fisheries.

In order to potentially increase annual fishery production to 16.5 million tons, the rebuilding of overfished stocks was seen as a viable option. This was considered as an effective way to not only promote a healthier ecosystem, but also to allow for increased resilience to acidification of oceans and climate change.

Meeting: Conference Room 12, Side Event on “The State of Global Fish Stocks and Opportunities for Sustainable Fishery Development”

Date/ Location: Thursday, February 16, 2017; 13:15-14:30; Conference Room 12, UN Conference Building  

Speakers: Kim Friedman, FAO; Tim Adams, Forum Fisheries Agency, Solomon Islands; Ms. Cristelle Pratt, Deputy Secretary General, Strategic Partnerships & Coordination Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, Fiji

Written By: WIT Representative Donna Sunny

Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development

At the third Ocean Conference preparatory meeting, organizations and member states continued to bring attention to the issues they desired to be mentioned in the call for action. The biggest topics mentioned included marine pollution and ocean acidification, IUU (illegal, unreported, and unregulated), fishing, and marine conservation.

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The ocean plays a crucial part in the development and sustainability of whole communities. The ocean and its resources are the foundation of livelihoods, economies, and cultures – all of which are threatened by marine pollution and ocean acidification. With 80% of marine pollution coming from land resources, many organizations and member states urged for the use of technologies that can mitigate the action of pollution. Growing CO2 levels in the ocean have become visible with the increase of sea levels, and if left unattended, acidification will increase. As the representative of Venezuela warned, “We have become poison of the ocean. We can transform this by becoming the medicine.”

On the practice of fishing, organizations and member states all addressed the issue of IUU fishing. IUU fishing is prominent on the high seas where fishers can evade enhanced security and national jurisdictions. Overfishing could lead to the extinction of various species the destruction of ecosystems. To protect species, marine conservation plays a key role. Protecting and preserving marine environments is vital to maintain resources and save organisms in the ocean.

To address every issue, organizations and member states urged for the cooperation of the private sector and civil society. They also highlighted the importance of addressing other SDGs to achieve SDG 14. Setting major areas of focus can help build more resilient oceans and secure the health and wellbeing of society.

Meeting: Preparatory Meeting for the United Nations Conference to Support the Implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development

Date/Location: Thursday, February 16, 2017; 10:00 to 13:00; Conference Room 4

Speakers: Mr. Alvaro Mendonya Moura, Permanent Representative of Portugal; Mr. Burhan Gafoor, Permanent Representative of Singapore; Representative of World Oceans Council; Representative of Ocean Policy Research Institute; Representative of WWF; Representative of Bangladesh; Representative of Micronesia; Representative of Fiji; Representative of Sri Lanka; Representative of Tuvalu; Representative of Thailand; Representative of Solomon Islands; Representative of Indonesia; Representative of Vietnam; Representative of Venezuela; Representative of Greece; Representative of Ghana; Representative of Palau; Representative of Marshall Islands; Representative of Nepal; Representative of Nigeria; Representative of Italy; Representative of Paraguay; Representative of Chile; Representative of Kenya; Representative of Honduras; Representative of Belgium; Representative of Iceland; Representative of Monaco; Representative of Papua New Guinea; Representative of the Philippines; Representative of International Seabed Authority; Representative of International Chamber of Commerce; Representative of the International Renewable Energy Agency; Representative of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development; Representative of the World Bank; Representative of  FAO; Representative of ILO; Representative of UNESCO; Secretariat of the Convention on biological diversity; Representative of UNEP; Representative of UNDP; Representative of the World Animal Protection; Representative of the Monterrey Bay Aquarium; Representative of the High Seas Alliance; Representative of Conservation International; Representative of the Ocean Frontier Institute

Written By: Leticia Murillo, WIT Representative

Measuring up to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The March 9th session focused on ensuring data is available in order to help countries measure progress, identify shortcomings and support sustainable development. Carletto introduced GRAInS, a partnership for improving the availability and quality of SDGs on agriculture and beyond. Carletto highlighted GRAInS’ objectives: Conduct methodological research and develop new standards and tools to improve accuracy and cost-effectiveness of integrated surveys on agriculture; pilot and scale up implementation of Agricultural Integrated Surveys (AGRIS) by FAO; coordinate institutional programs towards improved harmonization and integration; advocate and fundraise for scaling-up implementation of integrated surveys on agriculture; and promote public access and greater use of microdata. Carletto explained that the central functions of GRAInS include methodological research and standard settings, coordination across initiatives, advocacy for household and farm surveys, managing common funding and fundraising. Carletto emphasized GRAInS’ key rationale: A need for greater reliance on multiple data resources, a recognized need for improved harmonization and coordination among partners and the need to move beyond indicators, which requires different types of surveys.

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The GRAInS Steering Committee will provide strategic guidance, review and advise on funding allocations to major activities, monitor progress and endorse its annual report, including the financial report. When selecting countries to implement the GRAInS program, Carletto explained that partners evaluate on certain criteria: Countries must have a nationally endorsed strategic plan for agricultural and rural statistics, and countries must have a buy-in, a commitment to increasingly assume the funding responsibilities of the surveys the grant initiatives support. Carletto noted that GRAInS will be piloting in Ghana, Senegal, Uganda, 1 Asian country, and 1 Latin American country. Next, GRAInS will scale up to fifteen more countries. Gero Carletto and Kecuk Suhariyanto concluded by emphasizing that efficiency, first-and-foremost, needs to be improved in order to achieve progress.

Meeting: Measuring up to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Contributions from FAO

Date/Location: Thursday, 09 March 2017; 1:15 to 2:30; UN Headquarters, Conference Room 8

Speakers: Carla Mucavi, Director of FAO NY; Pietro Gennari, FAO Chief Statistician; Aboubacar Beye, Director General, National Statistics and Demographic Agency (ANSD), Senegal; Kecuk Suhariyanto, Director General, Central Agency on Statistics (BPS), Indonesia; Gero Carletto, Manager, LSMS, Development Data Group, World Bank

Written By: Na-Yeon Park, WIT Representative

Holocaust Remembrance: Education Against Extremism & Building and Better Future

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In honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day, NGO Relations, Advocacy and Special Events Section and the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme, Outreach Division and the Department of Public Information organized a meeting to discuss the importance of education against extremism. Throughout the briefing, the curator of the Permanent Exhibition at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Dr. Steven Luckert, continually placed special emphasis on the role that propaganda had during the rise of the Nazi party. The Nazi movement was a rapid rise of power. Within a few years, the Nazi party won 230 seats in parliament, becoming for the first time the largest party in parliament. It was advertised as a “party of youth, a party for the future.” Widespread propaganda was so efficiently distributed by the Nazis that it was one of the most effective factors leading German constituents to vote for an extremist party.

Dr. Steven Luckert explained that Adolf Hitler was one of the first German politicians to craft a public persona by practicing and perfecting charismatic gestures, creating a trademark logo, and using slogans that appealed to mass mindsets. Dr. Luckert noted that Hitler recognized women’s influence in Germany. The majority of women voters were swayed by the party as well, although there were no promises of progress for women’s rights. Hitler’s campaign of propaganda was carefully curated. It included influencing children through boardgames and anti-semitic word problems in mathematics textbooks and the promise of protection from Jewish people rather than a war of aggression against them. Dr. Luckert’s in depth analysis of Hitler’s rapid rise to power called for a more careful consumption of widespread modern media and warned of the influences it has on societies today.

Meeting: “Holocaust Remembrance: Educating against Extremism, Building a Better Future” (In observance of the International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the victims of the Holocaust (27 January)) (organized by the NGO Relations, Advocacy and Special Events Section and the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme, Outreach Division, Department of Public Information (DPI)

Date/ Time/Location: Thursday, 26 January 2017; 11:00 to 12:30; UN Headquarters Conference Room 1

Speakers: Kimberly Mann, Manager of the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme; Steven Luckert; Curator of the Permanent Exhibition at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; Jamey Fischer, Professor of German and Cinema and Digital Media, University of California, Davis and Director of the Davis Humanities Institute; Thomas Schieb, Minister Plenipotentiary of Germany to the United Nations; Virginie Ladisch, Head of the Children and Youth Programme at the International Center for Transitional Justice; Gillian Kitley, Senior Officer and Head of Office of the United Nations Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect

Written By: Janice Park, WIT Representative

Partnerships for Sustainable Action

 

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In the December 20th session Professor Jan W. Dash discussed climate action as a matter of justice, ethics, and human survival. He emphasized that all SDGs are tied to climate change and that humanity has the power to reduce dangerous effects that climate change had on our planet’s health and biodiversity. H.E. Mr. Ahmed Sareer spoke on behalf of Small Island Developing States. He discussed the 300 partnership listings and the Samoa pathway. He reinforced the Maldives’ commitment to these partnerships and the necessity of the participation of all stakeholders. H.E. Mr. Odo Tevi reiterated the need for more efficient work to ensure that the SDGs are implemented and stay relevant. He also expressed the need to ensure oceans’ health and that countries enforce nationally determined contributions (NDCs). Dr. Christine K. Durbak shared the relevant work that she and World Information Transfer have provided over the last few decades. The Conference of NGOs began the committee on SDGs in the late 1980s, when WIT was invited to join. WIT focused on connecting the global community’s resources on human health and the environment.

Dr. Judy Buster-Otto discussed mental health and quality of life resolutions in the 2030 Agenda. She explained the work of the WHO and shared how the NGO-SDG forum can work through shared input and ideas, linkages to stakeholders, and advocacy with missions. Ms. Hawa Diallo noted the 66th DPI/NGO conference held in 2016 in Gyeongju, Republic of Korea. She shared the goals of the conference and the action plan for a youth program/agenda. She briefly explained the next conference and the TOGETHER initiative. Ms. Emilie McGlone briefly introduced Peace Boat organization and a few related upcoming youth initiatives and summer programs. Mr. Marc Jourdan expressed his aim to promote SDGs in Dominican Republic. He shared projects in schools and towns based in recycling and sustainable agriculture. Mr. Daniel Perell explained the importance of engagement with the larger NGO body and creating platforms for NGOs to target relevant goals. The election of the of the NGOCSD-NY Executive Board for 2017 ended the session.

Meeting: “Partnerships for Sustainable Actions in 2017 & Beyond”

Date/Location: Tuesday, 20 December 2016; 13:00 to 15:00; Boss Room, Church Center for the United Nations, 777 UN Plaza

Speakers: Professor Jan W. Dash (NGOCSD-NY Lead Adviser on Climate Change; Managing Editor of the Climate Portal website); H.E. Dr. Caleb Otto Ambassador of the Republic of Palau to the United Nations; H.E. Mr. Ahmed Sareer Ambassador of the Republic of Maldives to the United Nations; H.E. Mr. Odo Tevi Ambassador and of the Republic of Vanuatu to the United Nations; Dr. Judy Buster-Otto (Adviser to the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Palau to the United Nations); Dr. Christine K. Durbak (Adviser to the Permanent Mission of Ukraine to the United Nations; Founder and Chair of World Information Transfer; President of the K. Kovshevych Foundation); Ms. Hawa Diallo (Public Information Officer; NGO Relations, Advocacy and Special Events Section Department of Public Information); Ms. Emilie McGlone (Director of Peace Boat US, New York Office); Mr. Marc Jourdan (UN Programs & Outreach Manager; Global Foundation for Democracy and Development); Mr. Daniel Perell (Global Organizing Partner of the NGO Major Group; Representative for Bahá’í International Community to the UN, New York; Chair of the NGO Committee for Social Development)

Written By: Renée S. Landzberg, WIT Representative

 

SDG 14: Call to Action

 

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In this informal briefing on the ongoing preparations for the United Nations Ocean Conference, the President of the General Assembly, the Under Secretary-General, a special advisor to the conference co-presidents, and the Permanent Representatives of Sweden and Fiji discussed the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14: to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development. They expressed that without clean and healthy oceans our, and all life’s, place on the planet would be in grave jeopardy. Since 1970, there has been a 49% decline in marine species. By 2050, the ocean is expected to contain more plastic than fish. Representatives discussed specific and necessary targets within SDG 14. They reviewed relevant dates for the upcoming global conference and other plenary meetings and stressed the need to strengthen and replicate current efforts. Moreover, representatives expressed the need to form new partnerships that involve all relevant stakeholders (including governments, the UN system, NGOs, the private sector, etc.) in the spirit of widespread, global, and inclusive participation.

The United Nations Ocean Conference will be held from June 5-9, 2017. It will follow a two-day preparatory meeting, February 15-16, 2017, chaired by the Permanent Representative of Portugal and the Permanent Representative of Singapore. The meeting will discuss partnership dialogues themes and elements for the “Call for Action.” The June conference will assess challenges, identify opportunities for action, strengthen current partnerships and forge new ones. It will be comprised of 8 plenary meetings, 7 partnership dialogues, and an additional special event commemorating World Oceans Day. The conference will also adopt an intergovernmental consensus declaration and a report with co-chairs’ summaries of partnership dialogues. Finally, a list of voluntary commitments for the implementation of SDG14 will be announced at the conference in June.

Meeting: “Briefing on the UN Conference to Support the Implementation of SDG 14”

Date/Location: Tuesday, 13 December 2016; 15:00 to 18:00; UN Headquarters, Trusteeship Council Chamber

Speakers: President of the General Assembly; H.E. Ambassador Olof Skoog of the Permanent Mission of Sweden to the UN; H.E. Ambassador Luke Daunivalu of the Permanent Mission of Fiji to the UN; Mr. Wu Hongbo (USG DESA); Mr. Miguel de Serpa Soares (USG OLA): Ms. Catherine Pollard (USG DGACM)

Written By: Renée S. Landzberg, WIT Representative

 

Autism in Africa: Life Saving Awareness

 

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The December 6th session focused on improving the lives of people with autism, advocating policies to prevent social exclusion, and raising awareness. The panelists broadly discussed the importance of improving data, transparency, and accessible resources for community development regarding autism. H.E.s, The Ambassadors of Zambia, Uganda, and Malawi acknowledged the realities of children with autism, whose warning signs often go unnoticed. Parents of speech-disabled children, including H.E.Dr. Mwaba Kasese-Bota, the Ambassador of Zambia, are often unable to find support in the form of specialized schooling in their communities. H.E. Dr. Kasese-Bota stressed the need to connect the realities of autism with the objectives in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 4. In Uganda, people with autism are not recognized as living with a disability. Their families cannot often afford expensive support resources when they are available. Uganda has several modest facilities for children with autism, cerebral palsy and Down’s syndrome. In Malawi, treatments can be unhelpful and even detrimental. However, Malawi’s First Lady, Gertrude Maseko, is a dedicated advocate of autism awareness and access to helpful and non-harmful care.

H.E. David Roet, the Ambassador of Israel confirmed the country’s commitment to African nations and called upon the global community to unite to prevent discrimination, to make effective policies, and to help create a social and economic environment of inclusion. He stressed the need for more specialized medical staff, screening facilities, and schools specialized in care for students with autism. The Missions of Kenya, Poland, Angola and Nigeria focused on enhancing awareness in professional realms including research, collaboration, and efficient and cost-effective delivery of early diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Alan Kadish explained autism and potential contributing factors. He defined the condition as a disability in social awareness and interaction, not intelligence. He discussed United States’ treatment and schooling opportunities for children with autism. One mother described the special Israeli military roles offered to citizens with autism. Dr. Joel Wallach discussed studies of autism in children and the association of environmental change with worsening conditions for the child.

Meeting: “Autism in Africa: Life Saving Awareness Implementing the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” (co-organized by the Permanent Missions of Angola, Israel, Japan, Malawi, Uganda and Zambia)

Date/Time/Location: Tuesday, 6 December 2016; 10:00 to 13:00; UN Headquarters, Conference Room 4

Speakers: H.E. Ambassador Dr. Mwaba Kasese-Bota of the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Zambia to the United Nations; H.E. Ambassador Dr. Richard Nduhurra of the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Uganda to the United Nations; H.E. Ambassador Necton Mhura of the Permanent Mission of Malawi to the United Nations; H.E. Ambassador David Roet of the Permanent Mission of Israel to the United Nations; Counselor Fidel Casimiro on behalf of H.E. Ambassador Ismael Abraão Gaspar Martins of the Permanent Mission of Angola to the United Nations; Margareta Kassangana-Jakubowska Minister-Counsellor Deputy Permanent Representative of the Permanent Mission of Poland to the United Nations; Permanent Representative of the Permanent Mission of Kenya to the United Nations; Permanent Representative of the Permanent Mission of Nigeria to the United Nations; Dr. Alan Kadish of Touro College; Dr. Joel Wallach, Marylice Fegeley of Parent to Parent of New York State

Written By: Renée S. Landzberg, WIT Representative

Impacts of Economic Globalization

 

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Ambassador Donoghue gave a brief summary of Ireland’s economic structure and history to begin the November 29 session. The Permanent Mission of Ireland organized the meeting, and Mr. Steve Landefeld provided attendants with an in-depth summary and outline of the associated data. Mr. Ataman Ozyidirim discussed the current trends, uncertainties, and relevant “disruptions” that will determine Ireland’s economic future. He discussed TCB data that supports global economic growth projections and explained advancements in productivity data new this year. He ended and stressed the importance of creating value through qualitative growth by implementing more reliable and effective ways of measuring GDP. Mr. Klaus Tilmes and Ms. Deborah Winkler discussed ways to make global value chains (GVCs) work for development. They lectured on development through GVC Participation, relevant policy questions, assessing GVC participation, and WGB country engagement. Mr. Klaus and Ms. Winkler provided examples of multifaceted approaches relevant in Bangladesh, the ICT sector in Vietnam, and the livestock sector in Mali.

Mr. Michael Connolly’s presentation focused on Irish national accounts and payment balance within them. He focused on MNE dominance, communication challenges, the impact of increasing stocks in capital assets, trends in net exports, the impact of relocation (GDP to GNI transition), contribution of domestic demand and net exports to annual GDP, and the trends in Irish and EU household savings.The final panelist examined how to more efficiently measure global value chains, the impacts of technology, productivity, comparative advantage, and trade on U.S. employment, the growth and benefits of GVCs and trade, and the need for a system of extended international accounts and business statistics. The panelists ended the with case studies of globalization, an emphasis on the need for consistent aggregate estimates, and a discussion of MNCs and trade, MNCs and domestic economy, and MNE rates of return.

Meeting: Seminar on “Measuring the Impact of Economic Globalization” (organized by the Permanent Mission of Ireland)

Date/Location: Tuesday, 29 November 2016; 10:00 to 13:00; UN Headquarters, Conference Room 12

Speakers: H.E. Ambassador Donoghue of the Permanent Mission of Ireland to the United Nations; Mr. Steve Landefeld of the UN Statistics Division; Mr. Ataman Ozyidirim (Director, Business Cycles and Growth Research of the Conference Board); Mr. Klaus Tilmes and Ms. Deborah Winkler of the World Bank; Mr. Michael Connolly (Director of the Central Statistics Office, Ireland); Mr. Timothy J. Sturgeon (Senior researcher MIT Industrial Performance Center)

Written By: Renée S. Landzberg, WIT Representative

Women and Children’s Rights: Draft Resolutions in the Third Committee

 

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The November 22nd meeting began with a report of UN spending and proposed draft resolutions on preventing and combating corrupt practices and facilitating asset recovery. The Committee Secretary and the representative of Colombia stressed the importance of crime prevention and criminal justice. The Third Committee further discussed social development in the context of regional culture regarding youth, aging, disabled persons, and family life. Representatives focused on implementing outcomes of the World Summit for Social Development and the twenty-fourth special session of the General Assembly. The Committee deferred draft resolutions regarding women’s socioeconomic advancement, trafficking of women and girls, as well as “assistance to refugees, returnees and displaced persons and humanitarian questions” until a later time.

The committee discussed the promotion and protection of the children’s rights. Representatives proposed draft resolutions relating to “Child, early and forced marriage,” “Protecting children from bullying,” and “Rights of the child” (including, but not limited to migrant children). After some debate about language and content of the proposed revision, Sudan’s oral amendment to “Rights of the child” (A/C.3/71/L.20/Rev.1) was rejected by vote. The Committee adopted the revisions as earlier proposed, and several delegations followed with relevant personal statements. The committee agreed to adopt draft resolution to A/C.3/71/L.17/Rev.1 regarding the rights of indigenous peoples.

Meeting: Third Committee, 55th Meeting

Date/Time/Location: Tuesday, 22 November 2016; 10:00 to 13:00; UN Headquarters, Conference Room 1

Speakers: Chairperson of the Third Committee, Secretary of the Third Committee, Representative of Colombia, Representative of Nigeria, Representative of the Philippines, Representative of Mexico, Representative of Iceland, Representative of Sudan

Written By: Renée S. Landzberg, WIT Representative

Commemorating World AIDS Day

 

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To commemorate World AIDS Day, various NGOs discussed the significance of civil society’s role in responding to gloabl HIV/ AIDS. HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) cannot be eradicated without vaccines, and AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome) develops in some people after exposure to HIV. People living with HIV can avoid developing AIDS if they are tested and receive treatment early. Dr. Padmini Murthy, global health director/ professor at New York Medical College, considered AIDS as an issue of gender equality. Women are more prone to AIDS due to biological makeup. Getting tested is a high-priority following unprotected sex, or in cases of sexual assault. According to Dr. Murthy, women are less likely to be proactive in obtaining and initiating condom use during intercourse due to societal gender roles in heterosexual encounters. She sighted education and empowerment as key factors in discontinuing this pattern. Simon Bland, director of the UN AIDS office of New York, tested the audience’s knowledge on statistics surrounding HIV/AIDS. Currently, 37 million people live globally with AIDS. The majority of new HIV infections are in young women having heterosexual sex. Only 60% of individuals living with HIV are aware of their positive status.

Eric Sawyer, co- founder of ACT UP and the Housing Works and Health Gap organization, discussed initial responses to AIDS in 1981. There were extreme stigmas. Fear and neglect of diagnosed individuals made living with HIV/AIDS that much more frightening and isolating. Many who tested positive were fired, evicted, and shunned. Only two funeral homes in New York City were willing to embalm HIV positive bodies. However, 35 years later, Deborah Levine, executive director of Love Heals, happily announced that last year no child was born HIV positive in NYC. Molly McHugh, Communications Director of Grassroots Soccer (GRS), stated that GRS offers support to HIV positive youth by referring them to treatment and providing them with safe and supportive spaces.

Meeting: Briefing on “HIV and AIDS: How can civil society revitalize the response?” (on the occasion of the World AIDS Day) (organized by the NGO Relations, NGO Relations and Advocacy, and Special Events Section, Outreach Division, Department of Public Information (DPI))

Date/ Time/Location: Thursday, 1 December 2016; 13:15 to 14:30; United Nations Headquarters, Trusteeship Council Chamber

Speakers: Dr. Padmini Murthy, Global Health Director/Professor at New York Medical College and NGO representative; Simon Bland, Director of UN AIDS office of NY; Eric Sawyer, Co- Founder of ACT UP and Housing Works and Health Gap; Deborah Levine, Executive Director of Love Heals; Molly McHugh, Communications Director of Grassroots Soccer

Written By: Donna Sunny, WIT Representative