UN Philippines joins Pride March for LGBTQI rights

 

Manila, 29 June–Staff members of the United Nations (UN) in the Philippines, led by the UN Resident Coordinator in the country, Ola Almgren, joined the Metro Manila Pride March and Festival today in support of the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex (LGBTQI) Filipinos.

The UN contingent participated under the banner of two UN campaigns for LGBTQI equality: UN Free & Equal and UN Globe. UN Free & Equal is a public information campaign while UN Globe is a UN staff initiative to advocate for the equality and non-discrimination of LGBTQI staff in the UN system and its peacekeeping operations. Both campaigns reinforce the UN Philippines system’s commitment to stand in solidarity with LGBTQI Filipinos, their families, friends and allies, in their pursuit of diversity, inclusion and pride.

“The UN is committed to action,” Almgren said. “We work with decision makers, human rights institutions and community leaders to change discriminatory laws and to put legal protections in place.”

The UN Philippines commends the cities and provinces in the Philippines that have adopted and are implementing ordinances that prohibit discrimination on the basis of a person’s sexual orientation and gender identity and expression (SOGIE). However, these local government units (LGUs) are still in the minority. Only 21 of the 1,634 cities and municipalities and six out of the 81 provinces in the Philippines have anti-discrimination ordinances (ADOs). This leaves 79.2% of Filipinos, or close to 80 million people, without protection against SOGIE-based discrimination.

The UN Philippines therefore affirms its support for the LGBTQI community’s call for the passage of the SOGIE Equality Bill and urges renewed efforts to push for its enactment by the 18th session of Congress.

“We have momentum on our side. But we need to come together to address the remaining challenges,” Almgren said.

See photos of the event: https://bit.ly/2IYfdzf

Read the UN Resident Coordinator’s op-ed, “The UN stands with Pride”: https://bit.ly/2KPf2s8

The United Nations stands with Pride

by Ola Almgren*

This Pride Month, the United Nations (UN) in the Philippines stands in solidarity with the community of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex (LGBTQI) Filipinos, their families, friends and allies in their pursuit of equality, inclusion and pride.

The struggle for the rights of LGBTQI people is a core part of the struggle for the full and equal enjoyment of human rights by all.

The very first article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights proclaims that, “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.”

All human beings – not some, not most, but all.

Continue reading

UN Secretary-General’s Message on the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, 26 June 2019

The world drug problem is one of the most challenging issues we face. It has wide-ranging impacts on the health and well-being of individuals, families and communities, as well as on the security and sustainable development of nations.

Therefore, preventing and addressing drug challenges in all their complexity is essential to delivering on a fundamental global pledge, enshrined in the Sustainable Development Goals: to leave no one behind.

National priorities may differ, but the international community shares a common goal to protect people’s security and well-being, while striving for the progress and dignity of all.

I welcome the theme of this International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking – “health for justice, justice for health” – underlining the importance of a holistic approach involving health, human rights, criminal justice and social service institutions.

This comprehensive response guided the drug policy launched by my government when I was Prime Minister of Portugal two decades ago.

Earlier this year, at the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, Member States committed to “working together for rights- and health-based responses to drugs so that people can live in health, dignity and peace, with security and prosperity”.

I call on all governments to live up to this pledge. This means cracking down on drug trafficking and those who profit from human misery, including by enhanced international cooperation and intelligence-sharing across the entire drug supply chain. It also means human rights-based, gender- and age-sensitive prevention, treatment and rehabilitation services for drug use and HIV, offered without stigma or discrimination. It also means law enforcement approaches that protect people from violence and criminal exploitation.

Families, schools and communities play a crucial role, especially in supporting youth who may be affected by drug abuse with terrible and long-lasting consequences. Let us work with and for young people to prevent drug use and help young people lead healthier lives and navigate life choices with strength and resilience.

On this International Day, let us show our commitment to fulfilling our promise to ensure health and justice for all.

[Ends]

New UN Publications: May 2019

“2018 Near East and North Africa Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition: Rural Transformation – Key for Sustainable Development in the Near East and North Africa.
Hunger is worsening in the Near East and North Africa region, continuing a trend since 2011–2013. This report explores the relationships between food insecurity, economic growth and rural transformation. A review of SDG 2 indicators in the NENA countries reveals that improvements in hunger, food security and nutrition are positively associated with the degree of rural transformation. This year’s Regional Overview brings into focus how policies aimed at rural transformation can potentially lead to higher levels of agricultural production, better food security and nutrition outcomes, and reinvigorated labour intensive growth of the economy

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: FAO
ISBN: 978-92-5-131348-0
pp. 67

 

 

“Socioeconomic and Data challenges Disaster Risk Reduction in Europe.”
There are key elements in Disaster risk reduction that play a major role: the need to ensure stakeholders interoperability through an efficient exchange of data, and; the inclusion of socioeconomic factors which may influence disaster risk reduction processes. This report would support national authorities and DRR stakeholders in the continued implementation of the Sendai Framework. Based on national briefs, surveys and interviews, the report stresses the following recommendations for public authorities and relevant stakeholders

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNDRR
pp. 31

 

 

 

“Food Outlook – Biannual Report on Global Food Markets, May 2019.”
Food markets in 2019/20 are bracing for some additional uncertainties. Although, prospects point to generally well supplied markets, which is seen to contribute to a lower food import bill in 2019.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: FAO
ISBN: 978-92-5-131448-7
pp. 156

 

Continue reading

New UN Publications: April 2019

Health, rights and drugs Harm reduction, decriminalization and zero discrimination for people who use drugs.
People who use drugs have been the biggest casualties of the global war on drugs This report shows that people who use drugs are still being left behind.  Between 2011-2017, there has been no decrease in the annual number of new HIV infections among people who inject drugs. This is a problem that has a clear solution: harm reduction. There is compelling and comprehensive evidence that harm reduction improves the health of people who inject drugs.  UNAIDS calls on countries to end the divide on drug use and use stronger commitments for a human rights-based, people centered and public health approach.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNAIDS
pp. 65

 

 

 

Financing for Sustainable Development Report 2019.
In their 2019 Financing for Sustainable Development Report, the international organizations find some good news: investment has gained strength in some countries and interest in sustainable investing is growing, with 75 per cent of individual investors showing interest in how their investments affect the world.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNESCAP
ISBN: 978-92-1-101404-4
pp. 177

 

 

 

Global Nutrition Cluster Annual Report 2018: Achievements, Key Challenges and Ways Forward – January to December 2018.
In 2018, the GNC continued with the implementation of the 2017- 2018 work plan to achieve the three strategic priorities and two supporting objectives of the 2017-2020 GNC Strategy. The first strategic priority concerns GNC support to coordination platforms to fulfill their role before, during and after a humanitarian response. Despite the funding constraints, the GNC-CT managed to provide remote support to 24 country-level coordination platforms. In addition, three field missions were conducted to Bangladesh, Ethiopia and North Eastern Nigeria. The GNC also successfully organized global partner calls on Yemen, South Sudan, Niger, Ethiopia and DRC.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNICEF
pp. 46

 

New UN Publications: March 2019

“World Water Development Report (WWDR).”
The 2019 edition of the World Water Development Report (WWDR 2019) entitled ‘Leaving No One Behind’ seeks to inform policy and decision-makers, inside and outside the water community, how improvements in water resources management and access to water supply and sanitation services are essential to overcoming poverty and addressing various other social and economic inequities. It was launched at the Human Rights Council, at the Palais des Nations in Geneva (Switzerland), on 19 March 2019.

Bibliographic info: 
Publisher: UNESCO / UN Water
ISBN: 978-92-3-100309-7
pp. 188

 

 

“Measuring progress towards achieving environmental dimension of the SDGs.”
The SDGs provide a framework which elaborates the global development agenda towards achieving a better and more sustainable future for all. This report provides an overview of the current state of the environmental dimensions of sustainable development based on the SDG indicators. This global SDG indicator framework provides information on the most pressing global issues identified by countries; however, it does not represent a complete list of all information that is needed. The data in this report is based on data from the Environment Live Global Database. For this publication, simple extrapolation procedures were used to estimate if the SDGs targets at the global and regional level would be met based on the current state of the SDGs indicators.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNEP
ISBN: 978-807-3750-9
pp. 129

 

 

“Gender and environment statistics: Unlocking information for action and measuring the SDGs.”
Just as women and men have different access to education, they also relate to the environment differently. The report shows exactly how environmental issues can impact women more severely. Understanding such links between the environment and gender is an essential first step to allowing all genders to contribute to and benefit from sustainable development. Furthermore, this report seeks to provide a framework to measure the nexus between gender and the environment. It proposes 18 gender-environment indicators for inclusion in the wider set of gender indicators, across various the focal areas. The report also proposes specific ways that the links between gender and environment could be considered in the Sustainable Development Goals.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNEP, IUCN
ISBN: 978-92-807-3732-5
pp. 145

 

 

Continue reading

New UN Publications: February 2019

World Employment and Social Outlook: Trends 2019 (WESO).
This report provides an overview of global and regional trends in employment, unemployment, labour force participation, productivity, as well as employment status, informal employment and working poverty. It also examines income and social developments, and provides an indicator of social unrest. A key finding is that poor job quality is a prime concern for the most of the global labour force. In addition, unemployment and labour underutilization remain high in many countries, despite improvements in recent years. The report also takes stock of progress with respect to targets for Sustainable Development Goal 8, which has been slower than anticipated.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: ILO
ISBN: 978-92-2-132952-7
pp. 121

 

 

World Youth Report on Youth and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Activity.”
The World Youth Report on “Youth and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, prepared by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA), examines the mutually supportive roles of the new agenda and current youth development efforts. The report provides insight into the role of young people in sustainable development in the context of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and related frameworks, in particular, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development and the World Programme of Action for Youth.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNDESA
ISBN: 978-92-1-130349-0
pp. 235

 

 

Strengthening the Rule of Law through Education: A Guide for Policymakers.”
The new joint publication by UNESCO and UNODC Strengthening the Rule of Law through Education: A Guide for Policymakers explores the role that education institutions can play in promoting the rule of law and building new forms of engagement based on global citizenship, human rights and inclusion — all of which are vital to take forward the Sustainable Development Goal 4 on education, at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNESCO, UNODC
ISBN: 978-92-3-100308-0
pp. 64

 

 

 

Global Health Financing.”
The 2018 global health financing report presents health spending data for all WHO Member States between 2000 and 2016 based on the SHA 2011 methodology. It shows a transformation trajectory for the global spending on health, with increasing domestic public funding and declining external financing. This report also presents, for the first time, spending on primary health care and specific diseases and looks closely at the relationship between spending and service coverage.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: WHO
pp. 49

 

 

 

UN Secretary-General’s Message for International Day of UN Peacekeepers, 29 May 2019

Today we honor more than one million men and women who have served as United Nations peacekeepers since our first mission in 1948.

We remember the more than 3,800 personnel who paid the ultimate price.

And we express our deepest gratitude to the 100,000 civilian, police and military peacekeepers deployed around the world today, and to the countries that contribute these brave and dedicated women and men.

This year, the United Nations marks 20 years since the Security Council first mandated a peacekeeping mission to protect civilians.

Peacekeepers protect men, women and children from violence every day, often at great personal risk.

In that same spirit, on this International Day, the Captain Mbaye Diagne Medal for Exceptional Courage is being awarded for the first time.

We pay tribute to Private Chancy CHITETE, a Malawian who served in the Democratic Republic of Congo and died trying to save the life of a fellow peacekeeper.

UN peacekeeping is a vital investment in global peace and security.

But it requires strong international commitment.

That is why we launched the “Action for Peacekeeping” initiative, which aims to make our missions stronger, safer and fit for the future.

For millions in conflict-affected situations around the world, peacekeeping is a necessity and a hope. Let us work together to make peacekeeping more effective in protecting people and advancing peace.

Thank you.

2019 Theme: “Protecting Civilians, Protecting Peace”

Read about this Day.

UN Secretary-General’s Message on the International Day of Biological Diversity, 22 May 2019

From individual species through entire ecosystems, biological diversity is vital for human health and well-being.  The quality of the water we drink, the food we eat and the air we breathe all depend on keeping the natural world in good health.  We need healthy ecosystems to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and to address climate change: they can provide 37 per cent of the mitigation needed to limit global temperature rise.

Yet the world’s ecosystems face unprecedented threats.  An alarming and authoritative new report from the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services reveals that nature is declining at rates never seen before in all of human history.  Since 1990, Earth has lost 28.7 million hectares of forests that help to absorb harmful carbon dioxide emissions from the atmosphere.  One million plant and animal species are at risk of extinction and more than 90 per cent of marine fish stocks are in decline or overfished.

The impacts on people around the world will be grave.  Current negative trends in biodiversity and ecosystems are projected to undermine progress towards 80 per cent of the targets for the Sustainable Development Goals.  We simply cannot allow this to happen.

This year’s International Day highlights the impact of environmental neglect on food security and public health.  The world’s current food system is increasingly broken.  Billions of people lack access to proper nutrition.  Approximately one third of what is produced is lost or wasted.  The ways in which we grow, process, transport, consume and waste food are leading causes of biodiversity loss, while also contributing to climate change.

We must act quickly to reverse these trends and promote transformative change.  Solutions exist.  By halting environmentally harmful practices, diversifying our food systems and promoting more sustainable production and consumption patterns, we can improve global health, increase food security and strengthen resilience to climate change.

On this International Day for Biological Diversity, I urge all — governments, businesses and civil society — to take urgent action to protect and sustainably manage the fragile and vital web of life on our one and only planet.

[Ends]

2019 Theme: Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health

Read about this Day.

Join Summer of Solutions for Climate Action!

The “Summer Of Solutions” is a call for applications from young people around the world to create innovative technology-based solutions to global challenges.

This is a new initiative launched by the Office of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, in partnership with the United Nations Technology and Innovation Labs, and the United Nations Development Programme.

The 2019 #SummerOfSolutions aims to solve climate challenges:  

  1. #OpenCI Platform Challenge: develop an information systems solution that can serve as a platform to enhance the access of localized climate and market information.
  2. #CircularEconomy Challenge: present ideas for ICT tools and business process innovations that are related to the Circular Economy and can result in rapid and far-reaching improvements for society.
  3. #EthicalFashion Challenge: present ideas for ICT tools and business process innovations that are related to Ethical Fashion & Textiles, which can result in rapid and far-reaching improvements for society.

Selected participants and their ideas will be showcased at the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York City in September 2019.

Pick your challenge, get involved and help change the world!

Read more: https://uniteideas.spigit.com/main/Page/summerofsolutions

For any questions, please contact:

Teresa Debuque, National Information Officer, United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Manila, debuque@un.org