Second Day of HLPF Highlights Nexus Approaches, Urges Leaving No Human Right Behind
story highlights

On the second day of the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development's (HLPF) 2016 session, participants convened in panels on the theme of ‘ensuring that no one is left behind.' Speakers urged placing a far greater emphasis on human rights as part of efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and UN human rights experts issued a joint statement in which they cautioned against “cherry picking” from the SDGs.

They called on the HLPF to make the aim of reaching the most excluded groups first “their compass in the deliberations.”

hlpf212 July 2016: On the second day of the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development’s (HLPF) 2016 session, participants convened in panels on the theme of ‘ensuring that no one is left behind.’ Speakers urged placing a far greater emphasis on human rights as part of efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and UN human rights experts issued a joint statement in which they cautioned against “cherry picking” from the SDGs. They called on the HLPF to make the aim of reaching the most excluded groups first “their compass in the deliberations.”

In a panel discussion on ‘Food security and sustainable agriculture, climate action, sustainable oceans and terrestrial ecosystems – adopting a nexus approach,’ participants underscored the importance of a coherent, integrated approach to implementing and achieving the SDGs. On food security, some observed that food producers represent the majority of the world’s hungry, and supported the role of technological innovation, adequate nutrition and market access for farmers. The stakeholder group on older persons expressed concern over the lack of indicators for malnutrition among older persons under SDG 2 (zero hunger).

A panel discussion on ‘Creating peaceful and more inclusive societies and empowering women and girls’ addressed the link between SDG 5 (gender equality) and SDG 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions). Participants recommended: including women in the labor market; measuring women’s representation at the subnational and local levels and in informal and political spaces, and assessing the responsiveness of institutions to women’s needs; and ensuring access to justice and inclusive institutions. On data, Sweden urged data disaggregation by sex in conflict and post-conflict societies, and CARE International called for data generated by women.

During a discussion on ‘Science-policy interface: New ideas, insights and solutions,’ Wu Hongbo, UN Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, presented the 2016 Global Sustainable Development Report (GSDR). He described the focus of this year’s report on: ensuring no one is left behind; the nexus between infrastructure, inequality and resilience; inclusive institutions, including national sustainable development councils; technologies to meet the SDGs; the inclusion, in particular, of women, indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, and children and youth; and the identification of new and emerging issues.

In their joint statement issued by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the UN human rights experts said, “We are already witnessing some goals getting more support than others.” They stressed that no human right must be left behind, underscoring the importance of commitment to human rights, accountability, non-discrimination and equality. They also explain that the upgrading of slums cannot be achieved without “consistent protection against displacement of indigenous peoples and forced evictions of millions of urban dwellers,” which they said can occur if “policies are divorced from human rights standards.”

Human rights were also in focus during the UN General Assembly’s (UNGA) High-Level Thematic Debate on human rights, which is taking place alongside the HLPF. Addressing the Debate, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged an increased focus on human rights as part of efforts to achieve the SDGs.

The HLPF is convening from 11-20 July 2016, at UN Headquarters in New York, US. [UN Press Release, OHCHR Statement] [IISD RS Meeting Coverage] [UN Press Release, Ban Statement at UNGA Debate] [GSDR 2016]


related events


related posts