Addressing Homelessness

During the long week of meetings at the Commission for Social Development (CSocD58) at the United Nations headquarters, several meetings were held on the theme of the affordable housing and the social protection systems for all to address homelessness. In one of the meetings held on February 12, 2020, Mr. Srinivas Tata, Director of the Social Development Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific asserted that universality is what we have to pursue now by social protection and that should include affordable health system, timely manner, accessibility and profound resolution for homelessness. 

Ms. Christina Behrendt, Head of Social Policy Unit, Social Protection Department, International Labour Organization (ILO) emphasized the importance of universal social protection system for relevant systems and inadequate housing in all different categories of population. For example, social pension, child benefit and maternal care should be implemented to all people that is excluded by 55% of people currently. She asserted that not so high percentage of GDP is needed for the achievement of adequate of housing for all and SDGs, so that we need strong consensus for the effective policy making and adaption. In addition, not only ensuring coverage is a problem but also stable policy and making people to believe in this system too, since those plans need tax and contribution of the society. To conclued, she mentioned 6 keys for the achievement, which are coverage, risk addressing, quality, monitoring, coordinating and adapting. 

Mr. Marco Toscano-Rivalta, Chief of the New York Liaison Office of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction made sure that housing is a different type of disastrous risk since there are unintended consequences. He mentioned that as there are also some differences even in the same family, diversity should be cared in the process of policy making and implementations. Also he pointed out that the strong collaboration in UN and other regional offices is necessary. And he emphasized that data would help the country to understand their risk and situation thoroughly so the UN Habitat and the other organizations should work on that.

Ms. Francesca De Ferrari the United Nations Human Settlement Programme (UN-Habitat) of the New York Office asserted that the affordable housing and accessible housing is a start of every other rights like employment and SDGs consequently. She claimed that housing is not a roof, it is a fundamental human right and people should be considered as the center of actions. Also she emphasized that the coverage of the policy should include women, children, people with disability, refugees and migrants in all socio-economic factors.

http://olympiawa.gov/community/homelessness.aspx

Date/Location: Tuesday, 12th, February, 2020 ;15 :00 to 18:00 ; Conference Room 4, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY

Speakers:

Mr. Srinivas Tata, Director of the Social Development Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)

Ms. Christina Behrendt, Head, Social Policy Unit, Social Protection Department, International Labour Organization (ILO)

Mr. Marco Toscano-Rivalta, Chief of the New York Liaison Office of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction

Ms. Francesca De Ferrari, the United Nations Human Settlement Programme (UN-Habitat) of the New York Office

Written By: WIT Representative Jinhong Eom

58th Session of the Commission for Social Development (CSocD58)

Source: http://www.un.org/development/desa

The Commission for Social Development (CSocD58) is the advisory body responsible for the social development pillar of global development within the United Nations. The commission is currently holding its 58th Session at the United Nations headquarters in New York from February 10- 19th2020. Also, as a highlight during the 2020 session, the Commission for Social Development is celebrating its 75th anniversary, and the 25th anniversary of the Copenhagen Declaration for Social Development.

The theme for the 58th Session of the Commission for Social Development is “Affordable housing and social protection systems for all to address homelessness

During the first meeting of the 58th Commission for Social Development, H.E. Mr. Wulfran announced the newly elected officers, and vice presidents in different regions. United nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Mr. Zhenmin, in his remark showed the follow-up to the World Summit for Social Development and the twenty-fourth extraordinary session of the General Assembly with the Priority theme: “Affordable Housing and Social Protection Systems for All to Address Homelessness”. He mentioned the novel Corona virus, which is impacting China, and spreading all around the world. Global efforts to prevent the novel corona virus is necessary for social protection. The effort for china in global health and support to outbreak the novel Corona virus soon. Provision of adequate, safe and, affordable housing, expansion of social impact, adoption of climate change, partnership with government, and civil society is the priority theme for social protection, development, and policy.

Chair of the NGO Committee for Social Development, Mr. Perell recognized that the implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and the Programme of Action, the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing, Action for Youth, four the objectives of the International Year of the Family and their follow-up processes. He also highlighted the role of non-governmental organizations, civil society actors, in advancing the implementation of the Copenhagen Declaration and the Programme of Action and, in this respect, the work of the Commission. The important thing is encouraging the member state to find the tool and take advantage to consider a new approach for the decade of action delivery for social hosing development with the universal definition for homelessness, academic study, and policy declaration.

https://www.un.org/development/desa/dspd/2019/10/inclusive-united-cities/

Representative in Youth, Ms. Tan Ja Yi recognized the homeless social protection services with member state commitment to invest prioritize and underrate and lifelong system for youth. She pointed out providing to every child in the same line is need able to give good nutrient food, financial aid for high education, etc. According to UNICEF reports, the government programs still challenge to provide education to all children go the school and need some resources to analyze. She talked about the review of relevant United Nations plans and programs of action about the situation of social groups, especially youth and women.

Director of DESA’s Division for Inclusive Social Development, Ms. Bas briefly emphasized the Social dimensions of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the African Union’s Agenda have triggered progress and shifted the way African governments and their development partners consider about the gap’s challenges related to social, economic, and political transformation in Africa. For the National dimension of a new partnership in African, we should produce social progress, political development of Africa, improve the living standard and going forward to prioritize their policy for sustainable growth, and universal education or health.

She pointed government leaders and decision-makers at national level should continue to champion sound governance and focus on the provision of public goods and services. She also highlighted the policy tool for portable housing can affect society and show the result by implementing the social framework. United Nations system organizations and African Union institutions should continue to establish more formal and consistent coordination.

Meeting: 58th session of the Commission for Social Development

Date/Location: Monday 10th February 2020; 10:00 am to 1:00 pm; Conference Room 4, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY

Speakers
H.E. Mr. Gbolié Desiré Wulfran IPO, Chairperson of commission for social development

Mr. Liu Zhenmin, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs 

Daniel Perell, Chair of the NGO Committee for Social Development.

Olivia Tan Ja Yi, Representative in Youth and Yale University

Daniela Bas, Director of DESA’s Division for Inclusive Social Development

Written By: WIT Representative Huijun Edelyn Park

Reparations for Victims of Sexual Violence

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Today a panel discussion was held to discuss the Secretary General’s guidance note on reparations for conflict-related sexual violence. Beginning the discussion, Mr. Tolbert from the International Center for Transitional Justice stated that Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s guidance report is a truly important policy document that can help design and implement these reparations. Victims of sexual violence have the right to prompt, adequate reparations, and reparations are one of several transitional justice measures states can use in post conflict scenarios to provide some repair to the victims. However, lack of political will and resources often hamper the implementation of reparations.

Following, Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson stated that the drafting of the guidance note was led by UN Women and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the document outlines principals and guidelines for an international response to conflict related sexual violence in the form of reparations. Sexual violence leaves profound lasting wounds, and the international community has a duty to help restore the dignity of survivors. Furthermore, rule of law and access to justice are necessary to combat impunity and help victims.

Next, Ms. Bangura, the Special Representative of the SG on Sexual Violence, said that failure to provide reparations perpetuates the cycle of violence. Furthermore, shame and stigmatization still surround rape, and reparations provide an opportunity to combat this. Reparations can include skills training and microcredit, and have the potential to help eliminate the unemployment, homelessness, and rejection faced by victims. She concluded her statement by saying that reparations need to translate from policy to practice.

Next, Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women, gave a statement on UN Women’s work with women’s organizations and civil society to ensure that the voice of women are heard in building justice mechanisms. She stated that transformative reparations are needed, meaning not just one cash payment, but access to land rights, skills, and fistula surgeries for victims. Reparations are not only about justice; they are also about empowerment.

The Assistant Secretary General for Human Rights, Mr. Simonovic, stated that the Secretary General’s guidance note includes a comprehensive overview of principles to be applied in reparations programs including that the programs must be accessible and inclusive, designed with the participation of victims in mind, and reparations should have the potential to transform the conditions within society that allowed the violence to occur in the first place. However, despite these efforts, many victims’ rights to reparations have not been fulfilled. For example, no victim of sexual violence in the DRC has received any reparations. In Conclusion, H.E. Ms. Mejia Velez and Ms. Betancur shared the experiences of Colombia in combating sexual violence, and providing reparations.

 

Meeting Title: Dialogue with Member States on the rule of law at the international level “Presentation of the Secretary-General’s Guidance Note on Reparations for Conflict-Related Sexual Violence” (organized by the Rule of Law Unit, Executive Office of the Secretary-General)
Speakers: Mr. David Tolbert, President of the International Center for Transitional Justice; H.E. Mr. Jan Eliasson, Deputy Secretary-General; Ms. Zainab Hawa Bangura, Under-Secretary General and Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict; Ms. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary General and Executive Director of UN Women; Mr. Ivan Simonovic, Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights; H.E. Ms. Maria Emma Mejia Velez, Permanent Representative of Colombia; Ms. Paula Gaviria Betancur; Head of the Unit for Attention and Reparation Victims of Colombia
Date: 1 August 2014
Location: NLB 6, United Nations HQ, New York
Written By WIT Representative: Marli Kasdan