UN MGCY Statement
High-Level Political Forum
15 July 2016
Session 16: Interactive dialogue with Chairs of Regional Forums and Executive Secretaries of the Regional Commissions
Link to Statement:
2016 HLPF – UN MGCY Statement in Session 16
I would like to make recommendations on behalf of the UN Major Group for Children and Youth regarding regional review. As I am participating in the HLPF on behalf of European youth organisations, the comments are largely referring to points made by ECE, although they could be relevant for other regions.
We need to have adequate participation of civil society in the design of monitoring at national and regional level. This is not happening in all contexts.
1. We call on you to ensuring that all major groups and other stakeholders have the space to participate in regional review processes; in all formal proceedings of regional forums on sustainable development. This needs to be done through an institutionalised mechanism for engagement in each regional review process.
We need to ensure that there is a diversity of perspectives and voices, including of those that might otherwise be left behind or drowned out; all represented in the regional space. Organisations of children and youth are often not the first to be approached in sustainable development issues, but our right to participate must be upheld. Participation should be channeled through the representative organisations of different groups and stakeholders in the youth context – this includes regional youth platforms, where they exist.
There cannot only be one seat for or one statement from civil society in formal proceedings; there cannot be one interlocutor in the setting up of proceedings. This is what happened at the ECE meeting this year, and this cannot be the case in the future. We look forward to a participatory process from next year onwards.
2. Furthermore, there is a need for strong, adequate communication mechanism with major groups and other stakeholders prior to regional forums – this means, among many other things, timely sharing of information and documents like zero drafts.
3. We need to recognize that there might be a need for capacity building for certain groups to enable their participation in regional processes, as well as awareness of and measures to overcome the barriers to participation for different groups. This is particularly relevant for children and youth.
4. Regional reviews must be channeled through true regional forums that build on the national level and feed into the global level. Unfortunately, this was not the case in all regions for this year.
For regional platforms and regional commissions to help ensure that no one is left behind in the achievement of the 2030 Agenda, their role in follow-up and review must follow these recommendations.