Indigenous peoples' representatives called for disaggregated data and indigenous-specific indicators to track progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), at the UN's two-day expert group meeting on indigenous peoples and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
23 October 2015: Indigenous peoples’ representatives called for disaggregated data and indigenous-specific indicators to track progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), at the UN’s two-day expert group meeting on indigenous peoples and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (PFII) organized the meeting, which brought together representatives of indigenous peoples, UN agencies, the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, to discuss and provide strategic guidance on incorporating indigenous peoples into the 2030 Agenda. The meeting took place from 22-23 October 2015, in New York, US, ahead of the second meeting of the Inter-Agency and Expert Group on Sustainable Development Goal Indicators (IAEG-SDGs) 2, which convened in Bangkok, Thailand, from 26-28 October 2015.
A concept note for the meeting highlights the need for disaggregated data that identifies ethnicity or indigenous status, to track development progress. According to the note, targets prioritized for the development of corresponding indicators include: targets 1.4 and 5.a on ownership and control over land and other forms of property; target 2.3 on agricultural productivity and incomes of small-scale food producers; target 4.5 on gender disparities and increasing access to education; and target 10.3 on elimination of discriminatory laws, policies and practices, and promoting appropriate legislation, policies and action.
Briefing the press, UN and indigenous representatives called for a human rights-based approach to setting indicators for the SDGs. Joan Carling, PFII member and Secretary General of the Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact (AIPP), welcomed the greater visibility of indigenous peoples in the SDGs, compared with their lack of visibility in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). She called for an indicator on the recognition of indigenous peoples’ land rights, and on free, prior and informed consent (FPIC), saying this is critical in addressing hunger, gaining equality and addressing indigenous people’s overall wellbeing. She said some targets under the SDGs threaten indigenous peoples’ rights, including targets on energy, industrialization and economic growth, which, she said, could result in indigenous lands and territories being subject to development of dams and biofuel plantations. She stressed that land tenure for indigenous women can help prevent human trafficking and violence against women.
Paul Kanyinke Sena, former Chair of the PFII, highlighted the call for disaggregated data. He said that due to previous history of inter-tribal conflict, there is a reluctance to mention ethnicity, and he welcomed having a platform for discussing this, noting that the SDGs promote partnerships.
Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, emphasized that disaggregated data and indicators are needed to enable proper monitoring and upholding of indigenous peoples’ rights.
Fabiana del Popolo, Population Division, UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), drew attention to an ECLAC study of the status of indigenous peoples in the region, which was produced for the 2014 World Conference on Indigenous Peoples (WCIP). She highlighted the challenge of eliminating inequity, noting that the infant mortality rate for indigenous newborns in the region is twice that of non-indigenous people, and the region has 826 different indigenous groups, totaling 45 million people and making up 8% of the population.
The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), Division for Social Policy and Development, hosts the PFII Secretariat. Development. [Concept Note] [Press Conference Webcast] [PFII Webpage] [Meeting Summary]