Selected Oral Interventions to the 2012 ECOSOC High-Level Segment

The Forum of Women’s NGOs of Kyrgyzstan (Special, 2005) said that, during the post-socialist crisis period, it was the women who had turned Kyrgyzstan into a trade hub in Central Asia, with thousands of jobs for marginalized people. They also had developed the sewing industry. Yet today, women were most vulnerable to the “exclusive growth paradigm”. Women without financial resources were the first to be victims of poverty, and to have their rights violated. Moreover, women’s economic initiatives faced structural barriers. To ensure women contributed at an adequate level, State support and social protection measures were needed. States must ensure decent employment for women with full protection for their rights. Women also must be recognized as effective generators of employment and included with full rights in economic and financial decision-making.

The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) (General, 1995) said older populations had suffered significantly during the current economic recessions. A 2010 AARP study showed the number of unemployed in the 55+ age group in the United States had risen 331 per cent from just 2000 to 2009. The link between employment and poverty eradication could not be discussed without bringing older persons into the conversation. Due to improved longevity, global life expectancy had increased by more than 20 years since 1950, to reach the current 68 years, per United Nations statistics. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the number of adults aged 65 and over would outnumber children under the age of five within the next five years. By 2050, older adults would outnumber children under the age of 14. Viewing employment, innovative models should be explored to accommodate a multigenerational workforce, such as a mentorship programmes in which older people can provide their experience.

The Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (Special, 2004) argued that internships, when used as a development tool, could help bridge social and demographic divides, providing young people the ability to obtain quality work experience. She supported innovative actions taken by the Ministry of Labour in the Dominican Republic to improve youth employability and labour force capacity. She also strongly advocated in favour of the integration of internship experiences within national and international youth employment strategies. She looked forward to sharing her organization’s experience and developing new multisectoral synergies aimed at enhancing employability, labour force capacity and social equity.

IFENDU for Women’s Development (Special, 2010) said that despite progress in increasing access to education, gender inequality, HIV/AIDS and environmental degradation impinged on peoples’ well-being. All stakeholders must take advantage of improved technologies to create change, and she urged exchanging ideas in that regard. Envisioning a world that had achieved all agreed development goals would provide the motivation to continue focusing on human rights issues. The question hinged on how to stop discrimination in employment. Governments must be incentivized to showcase that macroeconomic policies like expanded access to improved technologies were ultimately in their interests.

The Salesian Missions (Special, 2007) said youth unemployment was at three times that of adult unemployment. ILO had stressed that that trend risked creating a “lost generation”. Finding decent work was growing more difficult. To address youth unemployment, he urged that youth be provided with the skills needed to engage in a green economy. Governments, employers, trade unions and technical training institutions should increase their collaboration. Moreover, youth should be trained in entrepreneurship, while legislation providing for a living wage, health care and rights protection should be enacted and enforced.

The Society of Catholic Medical Missionaries (Special, 2000) said it was imperative to eradicate poverty and reduce the gap between the rich and poor, stressing the need for “economic morality” in building sustainable communities where everyone had a right to lead a decent and humane life. Governments and the private sector needed to encourage and invest in cooperatives and small and medium entrepreneurs as the best solutions to growing unemployment and to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. Strengthening the public-private partnerships was seen as inevitable. All Governments should reallocate a portion of their military expenditures towards better causes such as the creation of social protection floors. “The existence of extreme poverty was not only a matter [requiring] urgent attention, but a matter of shame for our generation,” she said.

The International Society of Doctors for the Environment (Special, 2002) emphasized the importance of good health as a condition of better results in education, work, society and economy as a whole. Healthier people are, the more productive they become in their lives. Funds spent on armament should be used to provide water, sanitation and basic healthcare.

The Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (General, 2002) said that poverty eradication is the central goal of the development agenda. Each country should adopt a long-term development plan that responds to the local needs and capabilities. New measures of country’s wealth must be established and institutionalized. GDP is no longer adequate because it does not take into account inequality and depletion of natural resources, domestic and voluntary labour is not included. Instead Human Development Index, the Genuine Progress Indicator, Gross National Happiness Index and Adjusted Net Savings Index should be used. He also suggested a few recommendations as follows: adopt and implement the Guiding principles on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights; provide public investment in infrastructures, support agricultural production and distribution. In developing countries, implement policies would help small landholders, landless, labourers and women to access legal services.

The Organización de Entidades Mutuales de las Américas (ODEMA) (Special, 2011) talked about the deals with Social Protection Floor and the way it was described in the Bachelet report. Mutual entities promote common good and social economy through the tool of solidarity. Even small programs that transfer money to the elderly and children can reduce poverty significantly. There must be a two-pronged strategy to fight poverty: social protection floor and social security system.

The Service and Research Institute on Family and Children (Special, 1999) said that in order to eradicate poverty, we must put the family at the centre of the society and protect it. Charter of the Rights of the family should be adopted and built upon.

Agewell Foundation (Special, 2011) suggested the right to work assuring both the income security and dignity should be available to all who are capable of working. Most countries in the world today are experiencing a gradual demographic transition from younger to older. In bypassing the continuing potential of older workers, nations may be losing an available resource. New policies to provide training to the older workers based on market demands must be put in place.

The Association of Victimology (Special, 1987) said that the vulnerable groups – such as elderly, young, disabled, poor and others – often become victims of crimes. Crime is a by-product of the prevailing economic, social, technological and political structures. The eradication of crime is central to the achievement of MDGs. A human rights agenda would strengthen MDG framework.

The Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (Special, 2011) and the International Association of Applied Psychology (Special, 2005) were concerned with promoting people’s healthy growth and development with the end result that they behave in acceptable, productive, affirming ways for their own benefit and for the benefit of the community in which they live.

The International Presentation Association of the Sisters of the Presentation (Special, 2000) said that one of the effective practices of investing in smallholder farmers by mentioning The Bakhita Women Project by rural women in Kinnertone village, Kalomo District, Southern province of Zambia which was initiated by International Presentation Association of the Sisters of the Presentation.

Legião da Boa Vontade ( The Legion of Good Will ) (General, 1999) said that the reduction of poverty in the context of sustainable development is a goal that involves first and foremost a bottom-up, multi-stakeholder process. It depends on active engagement of civil society and concrete initiatives on the grassroots, and hence Legião da Boa Vontade suggests that public educational systems across the globe should also embrace value-based pedagogies, like the Pedagogy of Affection and the Pedagogy of the Ecumenical Citizen created by the Brazilian educator Paiva Netto and used in the Legion’s schools and community centers of social assistance located in more than 80 cities of Brazil and other six countries.