Human Rights Council Panelists Urge Capacity Building on Data
UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré
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A UN Human Rights Council panel discussed ways to help countries meet their human rights obligations while taking steps to achieve the SDGs.

At the panel discussion in Geneva, speakers highlighted the need for technical cooperation especially in the area of setting indicators and gathering data.

They concluded that human rights and the SDGs are “mutually dependent and reinforcing,” and that technical cooperation is necessary for identifying and addressing issues of discrimination and human rights abuses.

4 July 2018: The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) held a panel discussion on helping countries meet their human rights obligations while taking steps to achieve the SDGs. Speakers highlighted the need for technical cooperation, especially in the area of setting indicators and gathering data, and concluded that human rights and the SDGs are “mutually dependent and reinforcing,” and technical cooperation is necessary for identifying and addressing issues of discrimination and human rights abuses.
At the panel convening in Geneva, Switzerland, on 4 July 2018, Georgette Gagnon, UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), cited examples where the UN has worked with countries to incorporate human rights considerations into the context of SDG implementation. For example, she noted that OHCHR has documented women’s access to social security in Tunisia, and has facilitated the drafting of an action plan for empowering women in rural areas. It has also helped develop a national rural health plan in Colombia, with the participation of Afro-Colombian and indigenous peoples. Mary Wayonyi, Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, reported that Kenyan human rights bodies have participated in the work of national statistics committees to improve SDG-related monitoring.

The 2030 Agenda is grounded in the universal human rights framework, and “no one left behind” provides a nexus between human rights commitments and sustainable development, said panelists.

Speakers viewed the SDGs as an opportunity for policy coherence between human rights commitments and sustainable development, focusing on the concept of “no one left behind” as the nexus between these two arenas. Nahla Haidar, Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), called for increasing interaction among UN agencies based in Geneva, Switzerland, and New York, US.

Gagnon reminded delegates that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is “grounded in the universal human rights framework.” [Human Rights Council Press Release] [OHCHR Website]

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