MMS & UN news -Dec 2017


World AIDS Day was observed on Dec.1 2017 with the  theme: “My health, my right”. Events were held focused on eradicating the AIDS epidemic globally as remarkable progress continues to be made in reducing the amount of people suffering from AIDS/HIV, and medical treatment has become more accessible.

Global Compact on Migration: The UN is in the process of preparing a global compact on regular, safe, and orderly migration. It would protect millions of people’s human rights as they flee persecution, violence, and natural disasters worldwide. International Migrants Day was celebrated on Dec 18 with the theme, “Safe Migration in a World on the Move”. The world counted 258 million people as international migrants in 2017 alone which is 3.4% of the global population. The International Organization for Migration released it’s World Migration Report 2018. To read it, click here: Civil society has proposed 10 points to the Governments and is much appreciated. The UN is encouraging the CSOs for National Advocasy. Unfortunately the USA has decided to withdraw from the Global compact too.

Human Rights Day is observed on Dec 10. This year marks the 70th Anniversary of the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights. One event encouraged everyone to act and #StandUp4HumanRights. You can join the campaign by recording a video of yourself reading one of the Declaration’s articles. Article 18 in Malayalam: To record your own video, click here.

World Scientists’ Second Warning to Humanity: On the 25th anniversary of their first warning to humanity, the Union of Concerned Scientists issue a second warning to humanity on environmental destruction. They stress that climate change is an urgent issue; humanity must act now. To read the full report, click here.

C-ROADS is a free, award-winning computer simulator that helps people understand the long-term climate impacts of actions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. You can use it to rapidly test strategies for tackling climate change. To use the simulator, click here.

SDG 13: Climate Action: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

What you can do: There are many simple actions you can apply to your everyday life to help reduce the effects of climate change like using public transport, eating less meat, consume less, recycle more, and support leaders who make policy to stop carbon emissions.

Medical students at COP23 demonstrating the negative health effects of climate change.

Recent Developments for SDG 13: The Bonn Climate Conference (COP23) was held in November, with Fiji as the president. The small island state brought a sense of urgency to events that is reminiscent of COP21, when the Paris Climate Agreement was born.  Civil society organizations had a large presence at the COP23, and pushed for action on climate-induced displacement. Much of the conference was geared towards urgent implementation of the Paris Agreement.

The U.S. held a side event on “cleaner fossil fuels” at COP23, which was met with protests. Another peoples’ delegation– governors, mayors, large companies, and universities were strongly present. Many countries reaffirmed their commitment to combating climate change in the wake of the U.S.’s drop-out of the Paris Agreement as the only nation.

A must-watch video on climate action: click here.

Upcoming events and Registrations: important information

Urgent Attention:This year, a new platform is used for managing NGO registration to meetings and events at the UN in NY. The platform is called Indico. It replaces CSO-net. In Indico, each CSW participant registers herself individually, for increased online security. Conference focal points of MMS (Celine and Mafe) then approve the individual registration of their representatives.

Commission on Social Development CSOCD 56:Jan 29- Feb 7 2018 Register by Jan 15

Commission on the Status of Women CSW 62:  12-23 March 2018 Register by Jan 25                                     Click here to register for CSW62

Signs of hope

  • President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana refused financial assistance for development from French President Macron. He believes it is time for Africa to develop independently and without assistance from the western world because foreign aid has not helped Africa develop in the past. This new path for Africa will hopefully lead to a better life for its residents and a better world.
  • The Justice and Peace Commission for Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference wrote a letter to 21 mining corporations in South Africa and asked them why they use tax havens for the majority of their profits. Shedding light on tax avoidance is an important step to ensuring the rich pay their fair share of taxes so they can be used to provide social assistance to the marginalized.
  • The International Labor Organization has created a flagship program on social protection floors as part of the efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Representatives of developing countries, international donors, and the United Nations met in Geneva to plan how to expand social protection floors. MMS are part of the Global Civil Society Group campaigning for global social protection floors.
  • 2500,Mining company licenses are cancelled in Indonesia:
  • The World Bank has decided to stop financing oil and gas exploration and extraction by 2019. This will help shift the global economy towards investing in renewable clean energy and reduce fossil fuel emissions.

Thank you From Alexis

This is my final month interning with the Medical Mission Sisters at the UN. I would like to thank Celine for her hospitality and guidance this semester. The past four months have been a wonderful experience helping advance the goals of the Medical Mission Sisters and learning about NGO work at the UN. –  Alexis

We wish the readers the peace and Joy of Christmas and a more humane, inclusive and dignified new Year for all.

Peace,   Celine Paramunda MMS & Ms. Alexis Keller